The UAE’s first home-made light attack aircraft, the B-250, is evoking significant interest among regional and international customers, says Abdulla Alsayed Alhashmi, senior vice-president of Calidus, the maker of the aircraft.
“The B-250 is ideal for Close Air Support (CAS), Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR), Counter-Insurgency (COIN), Persistent Air Support (PAS) and advanced and basic training,” Abdulla Alsayed Alhashmi says pointing at the aircraft, which is on display at the ongoing IDEX.
The aircraft is now undergoing flight tests in Al Ain; and it is getting a lot of attention as we have provided all the requirements of the end-users in this aircraft,” he adds.
The aircraft is a superior and highly efficient light attack aircraft that is designed especially for asymmetric warfare zones and it easily adapts to the most difficult terrain and weather conditions. It incorporates a superior carbon fibre structure that can brave the roughest terrain and flaunts ground-breaking technology to deliver best-in-class versatility and transportability at the low operational costs.
According to the company the operational cost is less than US$1,200 per flight hour. The aircraft can attain a maximum cruising speed of 350 KTAS and touch a maximum range of 2400 nautical miles with a maximum endurance of 12 hours. B-250 is powered by a Pratt and Whitney PT6A-68 turboprop engine equipped with a multi-stage axial and single-stage centrifugal compressor. Coupled to a single four-bladed propeller, the engine has maximum power production capacity of 1,600 shaft horse power.
The Calidus in-house team of engineers and designers in Abu Dhabi is further developing the capabilities of the B-250. Calidus has built a global network of suppliers as part of the B-250 effort, including Collins Aerospace of the US, Martin-Baker of the UK, Pratt & Whitney Canada, and Halcon Systems of Abu Dhabi.