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Young Engineers Building Light Aircraft

Published on 2:10:00 PM //

Young Nepali engineers are building an ultra-light aircraft, which they intend to test fly before Tihar.
After nearly two years of research and documentation, the Light Aircraft "Danfe" Fabrication Group, a research group of twelve students of Pulchowk Engineering Campus, is nearing the realization of its dream.
"Following our dream to build a light aircraft and kick-start aeronautical development in the country, we have nearly completed essential requirements to build the ultra-light aircraft," said Bikash Parajuli, 24, a mechanical engineer, from Pokhara. "We are planning to conduct the fist test flight before Tihar festival."
The design and dimensions of the aircraft are based on a project report on the aircraft prepared by 2059-batch students of Bachelor in Mechanical Engineering, Pulchowk Campus.
As the country is still lacking a Research and Education Institution on Aeronautical Engineering, Parajuli believes that the building of the ultra light aircraft would pave the way for starting an academic institution as well as manufacturing firm of such aircraft in the country.
Owing to shortage of essential materials like aircraft fabric in the country's market, the engineers have made a wing sail by sewing cloth together. "The project is undergoing experimentation and close monitoring," Parajuli said.
Parajuli had built a small model plane when he was just a 10th grader in Pokhara. Ganesh R Sinkemana, 24, another brilliant mechanical engineer, from Bhakrapur, is sure of the success of the project as the construction work and research have been widely appreciated by senior engineers of the country.
The two-seater aircraft will have a total take-off weight of 400 kgs.
The engineers say that the aircraft can have a positive impact on the tourism industry, apart from being a useful tool for rescue and surveillance due to its light weight and portability.
Such aircraft cost around Rs 3.5 million in the international market. However, the one being built by the engineers would cost around 1.5 million.
After overcoming initial financial problems, the engineers now have the financial support of the Ministry of Science and Technology and Avia Club Nepal from Pokhara, Parajuli said. Interestingly, the National Academy for Science and Technology (NAST) hesitated to help them citing lack of a Department to look after the hi-tech project.
"Our flight test will be conducted as per the rules of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal," assured Parajuli.

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