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PZL Warszawa-Okęcie to modernize Orlik TC-I trainer aircraft belonging to Polish Air Force

Polish trainer aircraft PZL 130 Orlik TC-I belonging to the Polish Air Force will undergo thorough modernization so that they meet latest global standards.

Under the contract awarded by the Ministry of National Defence, Republic of Poland, PZL Warszawa-Okęcie will carry out thorough modernization of the structure and avionics on 12 airplanes and subsequently put them into service as actually new machines which will be possible to be operated for several decades.

Following the modernization to TC II Advanced standard, Orlik aircraft will join 16 similar airplanes, which are currently being upgraded to the newer standard in the plant in Okęcie. Thanks to that they will operate in a standardized fleet of such airplanes in the future.

The works will be commenced immediately and all 12 aircraft will return to service in the period between mid-2019 and October 2020, with the future TBO of 12,000 hours. The work package is divided into two stages: initially the wings, tails, engines and propellers will be replaced, while afterwards modern systems will completely substitute the flight instruments and avionics. The modernization enables the introduction of a servicing system based on physical condition instead of a calendar-based system, with the halved number of necessary inspections, which will result in a significant reduction of operating expenses.

Manuel Heredia, President and General Director of PZL, said: “This programme will ensure a profitable way for Poland to train future military pilots on an advanced airplane, which meets all equipment requirements to fly in today’s regulated and controlled airspace, at the same time remaining a fully acrobatic airplane allowing the application of latest instruction techniques. In addition, the production capacities we gain during these works will be a basis for resumption of batch production of the Orlik for export customers, for which we perceive excellent opportunities.”

An additional agreement was signed earlier on development of an Orlik flight simulator for the Polish Air Force, which will complement the package of the required instruction aids.

Technical information:

The whole scope of works comprises the following:

Replacement of airframe structure – new wings and modified fuselage, engine mount and fairing. Propulsion system – replacement of PTA6-25C Pratt & Whitney Canada engine with the power of 559 kW and Hartzell propeller with four blades. Modernization of cockpit and systems – complete replacement of existing flight instruments with digital instruments for the student and the instructor. Covers integrated indicators of flight parameters, engine operation, navigation and warning indicators; new correspondence radio stations, installation of a ground proximity warning system and a traffic alert and collision avoidance system.

Replacement of air-conditioning system, electric wiring and whole cabling.


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