The Russian Mi-38 medium multirole helicopter, fully assembled using Russian components, made its first flight as part of additional tests aimed at widening its range of applicability. This will increase the helicopter’s range of tasks and make it possible to use it for transporting passengers, among other missions.
Additional certification tests of the Mi-38 helicopters aimed at widening its range of applicability started at Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant, a Russian Helicopters company, part of State Corporation Rostec. The operational life of helicopters is expected to progressively improve, a number of additional programs to be executed and major modifications to the type certificate to be approved. They include takeoff weight and flying speed increase, flights in icing conditions, at extremely low and extremely high temperatures.
Russian Helicopters further plans to perform additional certification tests aimed to widen the range of applicability and obtain the Supplemental Type Certification, which prove, among other things, the airworthiness of the specialized helicopter modifications.
The next stage will be the development of passenger and offshore modifications of the Mi-38 and its certification to category A, which provides for the implementation of the most stringent requirements of Aviation Regulations 29 with regards to passenger transportation.
The first helicopter body produced at Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant was redeployed for tests for the Russian Ministry of Defense. In May 2016, the military together with Russian Helicopters decided on the procedure and delivery deadlines for Mi-38 to the Russian Aerospace Forces. At the present time, the working design documentation is being developed for the new helicopter version and all necessary components, entirely Russian-made, are being purchased.
The Mi-38 helicopter boasts high-performance flight characteristics, advanced and reliable helicopter systems, and integrated on-board equipment. The primary structural elements of the helicopter body are made from aluminum alloys, separate components and details – from steel, titanium and composite materials. Energy-efficient engines, advanced carrying system and high power-to-weight ratio ensure efficient operation of the helicopter under a wide range of conditions, while the on-board equipment makes it possible to perform flights in a variety of climatic conditions around the clock.
The passenger modification of Mi-38 is designed to transport 29 passengers accompanied by one flight attendant. The system of passenger and on-board equipment ensures the economy-class comfort level of transportation. The key requirement incorporated in the design of Mi-38 is the guarantee of the maximum flight safety. The helicopter layout, the size and number of emergency exists, emergency exits through large windows, energy-attenuating seats and landing gear, the main rotor transmission’s ability to work for half an hour without oil, triplication of the pilot hydraulic system and impact-indestructible fuel system enforce the most stringent requirements of international aircraft safety standards.