Singapore

Nanyang Polytechnic students build fully functioning plane from scratch

Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) has a fully-functioning plane capable of carrying a pilot and passenger on a round trip from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur.

And it is built by students.

Student Bao Zheli, 19, is one of the 34 NYP diploma students in Aeronautical and Aerospace Technology (DAAT) and Aerospace Systems and Management (DASM) who built the fully functioning aircraft from scratch.

Mr Bao told The New Paper: "The project made me relive my passion for aerospace and I am looking to work in the industry in the future."

The 6.7m-long short take-off landing (STOL) CH750 aircraft has a functional engine, sophisticated electronics, a glass cockpit, two seats for a pilot and a passenger, and a luggage space.

The plane weighs about 352kg and can carry a total weight of about 599kg.

It is able to fly up to 710km, which is equivalent to a round trip from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur.

COST

The total cost of building the plane is $120,000.

Under Singapore aviation law, the NYP students are not allowed to fly the plane but the aircraft is an approved flying design by Federal Aviation Administration under the Certification and Operation of Amateur-Built Aircraft.

The project started in 2014, where two students would work on a specific part of the plane each school semester for 12 weeks as part of their Final Year Project (FYP), before passing the project on to the next pair.

Mr Bao, who was tasked to build the windshields, and his partner, Mr Neo Ming Jing, 21, who did the flight control system and the glass cockpit, were the last pair to work on the aircraft.

"There was a lot of pressure but we are glad that we did not mess anything up because if we did, all the efforts from our seniors would have gone to waste," said Mr Neo.

Muhammad Hariz Roslan, 26, was one of the first few students who worked on the aircraft.

He was assigned to work on the flaps.

He told TNP: "Even though I had done my part, I still wanted to do more.

"I wish I could work on the plane's interior."

Lecturer-in-charge Mr Lim Poh Ghee, 58, who teaches in NYP's School of Engineering and oversaw the project from start to finish, said that the plane was made for educational purposes.

He said: "It would not benefit the students if the school had just bought an aircraft for them.

"It was a good learning experience for them to build it on their own."

Mr Lim added that the plane will be used to train subsequent batches of Engineering students in NYP.

"The NYP students are very capable and I am very proud of the work they have completed," said Mr Lim.

Education