A report from Russia suggests that testing at TsAGI is being delayed because of missing parts (“shortfall of structural elements”) for the test vehicle. It seems the missing parts come from AeroComposite – Ulyanovsk and are being shipped by truck. The parts apparently were meant to be shipped on October 25. The distance from Ulyanovsk to Moscow, where TsAGI is based is about 550 miles.
If TsAGI starts its tests late, almost certainly the first flight will be pushed back. Thinking the first flight would be coming late this year or early next year now may be unrealistic. Perhaps late spring or early summer seems more likely.
But, even so, one might consider that UAC could still have the aircraft at Paris for the 2017 summer show. That would be playing the same card as Embraer did at Farnborough this year. It is ambitious, but almost certainly there is pressure for UAC to “show and tell”.
Co-Founder AirInsight. My previous life includes stints at Shell South Africa, CIC Research, and PA Consulting. Got bitten by the aviation bug and ended up an Avgeek. Then the data bug got me, making me a curious Avgeek seeking data-driven logic. Also, I appreciate conversations with smart people from whom I learn so much. Summary: I am very fortunate to work with and converse with great people.