|Russian Helicopters’ second Mi-38 prototype has gone airborne, conducting a long-haul mission in late December.
Russian Helicopters carried out the first long-haul flight of the Mil Mi-38, following the maiden flight of the second prototype airframe in early December. OP-2 flew 800 km (497 miles) from Kazan to Moscow in late December, arriving at the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant for further flight testing.
Earlier in the month, Russian Helicopters announced that the second prototype Mi-38 took to the skies for its first flight. Built by Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant and Kazan Helicopters, OP-2 has already conducted 26 ground run-ups and seven hover and low-speed checks. OP-2 features Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127 engines and IBKO-38 avionics from Tranzas, as well as upgrades to the hydraulic and fuel systems and main rotor blade modifications based on results from testing the first prototype, OP-1. Plans call for Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant to demonstrate OP-2 during 2011, with full production at Kazan projected to begin in 2013. A third prototype is currently in the assembly stage. The multi-role Mi-38 is intended for passenger transport, search and rescue, offshore and EMS operations. (From February 2011 Rotorcraft Report)