Türkiye to conduct bird strike tests on domestic aircraft projects

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  • June 28, 2022
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Türkiye will begin conducting bird strike tests for its domestic aircraft projects, one of the people involved in the process said Monday.

The country's first Bird Strike Test Facility will support the development and production processes of aircraft such as the TF-X fighter jet, Hurjet light attack aircraft and Gokbey general purpose helicopter.

With the facility, the infrastructure to be used in the studies carried out to ensure that the aircraft suffer the least amount of damage from bird strikes, which are considered one of the biggest threats to aviation, was brought to Türkiye.

Damage to aircraft components as a result of firing gelatin bird molds of various sizes at the aircraft will be determined and the test data will be used for the aircraft’s design.

Omer Faruk Turkmen, structural test manager of Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI), told Anadolu Agency that the facility became operational two months ago and that it is ready for tests after the finishing touches.

Turkmen said aircraft manufacturers should test aircraft under two conditions -- resistance and survivability.

"This is basically completed by firing the gelatin (at the aircraft) and obtaining a certificate if there is no problem after the impact," he said.

Everything is recorded, including the weight, size, volume, geometry, impact speed, tension, force, dispersion of the gelatin and shape of the plane, he added.

Test cost to decrease

Turkmen said that before the test facility was established, bird strike tests were carried out abroad for the most critical parts of the aircraft.

He emphasized that conducting bird tests domestically provides a significant cost advantage.

"We can do these tests with one fifth of the fee paid abroad," he noted.

He said the facility could serve TAI as well as Aselsan, TAI Engine Industries, subcontractors that make transparent structures and companies that make wind turbines and blades.

The facility is able to take all measurements thanks to its infrastructure, Turkmen said.

In one of the projects, a 1.8-kilogram bird model will be used, and the test process will be observed with two laser sensors and three fast cameras, he said.

A 1.8-kilogram bird combined with the speed of the aircraft creates an impact of approximately 25 tons for the aircraft, he added.

Source: Anadolu Agency