Amol Yadav assembled a whole aircraft by himself on the rooftop of his Mumbai house. It took him six years and two trials to procure the right materials and build a six-seater plane.
The plane can reach heights of up to 13,000 feet at 1500 feet per hour. It can cover a distance of 2000 kilometres at a top speed of 185 nautical miles per hour. It is built to carry a weight of 1450 kilograms, and could seat five people.
This 40-year-old Jet Airways deputy chief pilot was inspired to build his own plane when, in 1995, he saw how aircraft enthusiasts in the US bought old planes and customised them. In 1998, he built a two-seater plane, which he couldn’t test fly. Then he built a second aircraft in 2003, that also didn’t take off due to regulations.
In 2010, he began to properly work on building the aircraft. He formed a company called Thrust Aircraft Company, under which he launched the production of the aircraft, advised by Air Marshal Murali Sundaram and a panel of IIT-B professors. His experience in the aviation industry helped him seek out the best in raw materials, technical advice, and avionics.
He lives in a 3-BHK house in the suburbs of Mumbai with 19 other members of his family. With their support, both morally and financially, he was able to complete the airplane. They even sold of ancestral jewelry to acquire a customised piston engine and a navigational suite from the US.
The aircraft was certified by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), and was featured in the Make in India campaign in February 2016.
He believes in India’s potential to produce indigenous aircraft. In a quote to Afternoon DC, he said, “One thing I want to make clear is that we Indians have tremendous potential. I have proved it. If I’m able to build an aeroplane all alone, each Indian has a capacity to do something or the other.”
He is yet to get approval from the DGCA to fly the aircraft.