MS-21 aircraft will be “electrified”
Russian government intends to increase the share of Russian-produced components in the network of MS-21 project aimed at development of the advanced short- and medium-haul aircraft. In particular, it is planned to develop a new Auxiliary Power Unit (APU), Izvestiya reports. The Ministry of Industry and Trade issued a tender for development of the APU for the advanced aircraft “in order to assure the product’s competitive ability and phase out the imported components”. APU is the auxiliary power source, which provides the start of engines in the air and assures the stable work of different aircraft systems (for instance, air conditioning system and ventilation) while on the ground. One of the primary objectives of the tender is to assess the cost of development of the new APU. The Ministry assures that the expenses are justified (the cost of research and development work is assessed at 390 million rubles). The certification of the developed components for the APU must be completed by September 2015. Russia has a vast experience in development of APUs for different airliners and helicopters, but there are no ac starter-generators with enough power (over 100 kVA) and control systems able to grant the start of the APU from the batteries. In particular, it is the reason why the MS-21 aircraft (under development) is being fitted with an APU made by Honeywell (USA) with an ac starter-generator (120kVA), the ministry explained. The development and certification of the competitive APU will allow implementing the “electric aircraft” concept by means of adapting most of the equipment to the use of electric actuating mechanisms, which help decrease weight and improve operational characteristics of the advanced aircraft, the Ministry explained. «The tender has a clear aim: development of the APU for advanced MS-21 aircraft in order to replace the foreign analogue. And we must develop the new certified product in a short period of time, — the Ministry added. — Of course the tender is open for all the candidates. Our Ministry is ready to discuss the advanced technologies in the network of this work and other projects».