NAL to develop executive jets with Mahindra Group

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Bangalore, Sep 27 (UNI) Public Sector National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), a premier Aerospace Research and Technology Development Organisation, is developing a five-seater executive jet, NM5-100, in collaboration with Indian automobile major Mahindra Group.

Mr Sathish Rohidekar, senior NAL official, told UNI here today the first prototype of the aircraft, designed and developed in association with Mahindra Aerospace, a subsidiary of the Mahindra Group, will roll out by mid-2009.

For the first time since its inception, NAL is venturing into developing a small-sized jet with private participation.

Mr Sathish said while Mahindra Aerospace will take responsibility for marketing and serial production of the jet, a substantial part of aircraft design and development would be done by NAL.

Stating it was the first-ever public-Private joint initiative by the NAL, Mr Sathish said two prototypes of NM5-100 will be developed at the NAL facility before being handed over to Mahindra Aerospace for commercial production.

For the ambitious joint venture, the Government had released Rs 6.5 crore under the XI Plan and at present, the design and analysis work was in progress.

The luxury executive jet would be built with components sourced globally and powered by Lycoming IO-540 engine with a range of 1,300 km and a cruising speed of 280 km per hour. The cost of the all metal aircraft would be around Rs 1.5 crore each,he said.

NAL had already designed and successfully developed three-seater jet, Hansa-3, an all-composite light trainer aircraft ideal for ab initio training, sport and hobby flying with lightning protection and features for day and night flying.

It had also produced 13 DGCA-certified dual-controlled Hansa-3 aircraft so far. They were successfully flying in various flying clubs having logged in around 2200 flying hours.

''The rugged, operationally cost-effective and easy to maintain'' composite bodied aircraft costs Rs 70 lakh,he said.

NAL had also successfully designed and developed a multi-role light 14-seater transport aircraft Saras which was presently undergoing strenuous tests to get DGCA certification.

UNI MV GM MP GC1704

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