Test pilots from HAL, Indian Air Force and the Indian army carried out the trial tests between Aug 24-Sept 2.
Designed and developed by the state owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) has proven its high altitude capability in hot and high weather conditions in the Himalayas.
Test pilots from HAL, Indian Air Force and the Indian Army carried out the trial tests between Aug 24-Sept 2.
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At the end of the tests carried out, R Madhavan, CMD, HAL said, “The LUH has complied with all the requirements of the users and with the completion of hot and high altitude testing, it is close to operational clearance certification.”
Giving technical details of the tests carried out, according to HAL all the tests had been planned and were successfully demonstrated and completed. It all started with a comprehensive test carried out at Leh (3300m) under extreme temperatures which could go up to International Standard Atmosphere (ISA) +32 degree C and this also included envelope expansion, performance and flying qualities.
The LUH lifted off from Leh and was put to tests where it demonstrated both hot and high hover performance at Daulat Beg Oldie (DBO) Advanced Landing Ground (ALG) at 5000m and this was then followed by another forward helipad (5500m at ISA +27degree C).
LUH cleared these extreme weather conditions without any problem as it is designed for such operation. These extreme weather conditions often impose flight restrictions on all other civil and military aircraft. The three days 3000 km flight of the LUH started from Bengaluru to Leh and it flew over many civil and military airfields. Through the three day journey, it was undertaking trials at high altitude, and in the process proved that it has high reliability without any service support. According to HAL, the composite trials team had designers, flight test crew of HAL, the IAF and Indian Army. There were representatives of CEMILAC and ORDAQA who were witnessing these trials for both military and civil certification requirements.
This indigenous helicopter had completed hot weather trials at Nagpur last year and earlier this year the cold weather trials at Leh. The sea level trials were held in Chennai in 2018 and this year at Puducherry.