Acra KAM-500 Helps to Breathe New Life into the Young Eagle

Acra KAM-500 Helps to Breathe New Life into the Young Eagle

The PZL-130 "Orlik" (Young Eagle) is a single-engine, two-seat trainer aircraft designed and built for the Polish Airforce. The TCI variant has successfully operated as a trainer and acrobatic aircraft since the mid-90s, but several issues make continued operation a challenge. 

The Air Force Institute of Technology (ITWL) began a complete upgrade to the Orlik (new wings, avionics and engine) and the implementation of a new maintenance system based on Aircraft Structural Integrity Program (ASIP) principles. The ITWL required a compact form-factor DAU, capable of sampling a high number of analog acquisition channels synchronously along with avionics flight parameters (velocity, pitch/yaw/roll angles etc.). A clear upgrade path was also desired to allow for future unplanned measurement requirements. 


The SEWST program successfully concluded in 2014, and the new damage-tolerant maintenance system was put into effect at the beginning of 2015. The benefits realized by the program included: 

  • Huge savings from reducing maintenance costs (approximately $70M over the lifetime of each aircraft) 
  • Increased operational availability by eliminating downtime during overhauls (about 25% of the fleet would have to be constantly in the depot) 
  • Extension of total service life to 6,000 flight hours, with future extensions possible 


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