L15 Falcon Trainer Jet
The L-15 Falcon is an advanced trainer aircraft currently under development by Nanchang-based Hongdu Aviation Industry Corporation (HAIG). The aircraft made its maiden flight on 13 March 2006. The aircraft's development was reportedly assisted by Yakovlev OKB of Russia. JL-9/FTC-2000 Mountain Eagle trainer jet from Guizhou Aircraft Industry Corporation (GAIC) is is a direct competitor of the L-15. L-15 has a wide range of more advanced features comparing JL-9, however JL-9's development and production would not rely on key components that can only be imported from foreign suppliers, which is a key benefit comparing L-15 heavily relies on AI-222 series turbofan engine from Ukraine.
HAIG unveiled a full-scale mock-up of its L-15 advanced lead-in trainer (LIFT) in the 2004 Zhuhai Airshow. The two-engine, two-seat L-15 reportedly features the latest advanced technologies such as digital quadruple fly-by-wire (FBW), glass cockpit, and hands-on-throttle-and-stick (HOTAS) flight control. The aerodynamic performance of the aircraft is enhanced by its large leading edge extensions (LEX) design, which gives a maximum angle of attack of 30°. This is very useful when trying to simulate the maneuvers of advanced fourth-generation fighters such as J-10 and J-11.
Analysis of the world arms trade, according to the Russian Center on August 19 2010 reported that China's new coach - L-15 fighter development work has been completed, about to enter the small batch production.
So far, China's Hongdu Aviation Industry Corporation produced a total of six L-15. Of these, five will become the basis for small-volume production models, and section 6 will be equipped with an afterburner for the first time installed the AI-222-25F engines. It is reported that Ukraine engine company has been delivered to China in June this year the first batch of the engine.
According to the plan, the first six L-15 trainer aircraft first flight test will be conducted this year in September. In addition, the same engine equipped with afterburning section 7 L-15 of the assembly work has begun, is expected to be completed by 2011.
Hongdu Aviation Industry Corporation has begun to design single-seat type of L-15. It is reported, L-15 in the future will also be converted into a light attack aircraft. Have the operational capability of the L-15 except for equipment outside the Chinese Air Force, will also be to the international market. Meanwhile, the company will not rule out the Science and Development of the Chinese Navy L-15 derivative models of possibility.
Honduras in 2008 at the China Air Show will be the first time that L-15 engine with afterburner. And the first six L-15 equipped with the AI-222-25F engine in afterburner mode, the maximum force up to 4200 kg, the maximum flight speed trainer began to 1.6M.
Delivered to China in AI-222-25F, while Ukraine company also developed a greater thrust of AI-222-28F (thrust 4500 kg) and AI-222-30F (5000 kg thrust) engine. The latter two may be introduced for the equipment and load up more L-15, of course, they may also be used to equip other aircraft in China.
Currently, Ukraine has L-15 program as Ukrainian military-technical cooperation in the field of the most successful and most promising projects.
In addition, Russia is also L-15's development process provided assistance to the Chinese side. It is reported that Yakovlev Design Bureau in 2003-2005 during the design of L-15 had been assessed and provide a scientific - technical tracking service.
L-15 is so far developed the most advanced training aircraft, its maximum takeoff weight of 9,800 kg, practical service ceiling 16,500 meters, body length of 12.27 meters, wingspan of 9.48 meters. L-15's fuselage structure, 25% of carbon composite materials. The machine's service life up to 10,000 hours (30 years). L-15 can be used for training pilots to master control of F -10, F -11 and F-16 fighter jets and other third-generation skills.
According to Science and Company, L-15 price (basic model is priced at about 10 million U.S. dollars) will be very much lower than its performance with other similar models, including the Russian Jacques -130, South Korea and Italy, T-50 M-346. Chinese experts believe that the aircraft in the international market will have very good sales prospects, especially those equipped with a K-8 trainer aircraft L-15 countries will be an important potential customers. China Aviation Industry Corporation recently had Xuanbu, Cai Gou L-15 trainer aircraft of Guo Jia Jiang will likely be its Guoneishengchan Zai Zhe Zhong advanced equipment of Xuke Zheng Hang Kong, China will carry out production for foreign customers to provide necessary assistance.
It is reported that authorized foreign production of L-15 not only will retain all the key features, and more importantly, developing the aircraft's potential customers, L-15 also is a relatively inexpensive advanced fighter . In the current national trainer has a relatively saturated market, the development of China's L-15 can be said to be a high flight characteristics, can be used to train fighter pilots of the most modern and advanced trainer aircraft.
Some African countries have had problems sourcing L-15 had contact with the Chinese side. In addition, the Venezuelan Government is also L-15 on the feasibility of purchasing assessment.