Bihrle Applied Research Inc (BAR) hired by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to act as an external consultant in Identifying stability & control issues in the Intermediate jet trainer (IJT) program is confident that modifications carried out on the test aircraft would prove successful in upcoming Spin Test which has been main bottleneck issue with the program which almost killed the program.

BAR has over 40 years of experience in the aerospace industry in support of every major manufacturer and government agency and has used Wind Tunnel Testing and simulation database to collect data for upset modeling (stall, departure & recovery, spin, failures) of the IJT after which it recommended moving of the horizontal fins and rudder further down the fuselage.

HAL restarted flight testing of its HJT-36 Sitara IJT on 17 April last year and had to perform basic flight regime testing again due to major modifications to the air frame which according to sources close to has resulted in much-improved maneuverability at all flight regimes but the crucial spin tests were pending for want of integration of the spin recovery parachute as recommended by BAR. can confirm that at least Two HJT-36 Sitara IJT Limited Scale production variant has been modified as per the recommendation of the BAR since the program was restarted last year and crucial spin trials are likely to commence in June-July later this year. According to BAR, at least that the Wind Tunnel Testing and simulation database of the modified IJT and its optimized aircraft design should clear spin tests as mandated by the IAF.

Once Spin trails are cleared, HAL will be approaching IAF again to carryout Internal trials of the IAF to verify and restart the program officially. Present modification and internal trails of the HJT-36 Sitara are being done by HAL with its funds after the Ministry of Defence (MOD) pulled out of the official funding to the program due to prolonged delays.

HAL already has manufactured 16 limited serial production HJT-36 ready with it and if things go as planned then it will reengage with IAF in talks for manufacturing 83 IJTs and some more orders for the Navy with upgraded features.


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