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Next Saras prototype by 2010, says NAL

A File photo of NAL Saras

NEW DELHI (BNS): The National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) will deliver 15 Light Transport Aircrafts to the Indian Air Force as agreed, despite setback caused by the crash of the second prototype of Saras in March, media reports said.

MS Chidananda, head of the Centre for Civil Aircraft Design and Development (CCADD), announced this at the inauguration of the newly constructed Aircraft Hangar at the NAL Belur Campus in Bangalore, on Saturday.

He said the 14-seater third prototype of the Saras will be ready by the end of 2010. HAL will manufacture the aircraft at its Kanpur facility. The Saras would now weigh 500 kg lesser and that was achieved using composite wings and tail.

The Indian Air Force has expressed interest in acquiring 15 Saras aircraft. The NAL would also be delivering another 30 aircrafts to the IAF and is expecting to make the first delivery in the third quarter of next year, reports said.

SARAS is a multi-role light transport aircraft. Currently, two prototypes are flying. The Saras PT1 was flown in Aero India 2007 during the inaugural display.

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