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16-toTake-off magazine March 2010
special edition for FIDAE 2010

 

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FIDAE 2010
Be-200: Russian amphibian crosses Atlantic

INDUSTRY
Russian An-148s start operations
PS-90A2 obtains type certificate
Fourth SuperJet kicks off trials
MC-21 subcontractors selected

Russian commercial aircraft production in 2009. "Supply has exceeded demand for the first time"
By tradition, early in the year, Take-off analyses the results produced by the Russian aircraft industry in terms of production and delivery of passenger and cargo planes in the previous year. Unfortunately, last year brought no drastic change: due to the global economic crisis, actual status of the advanced aircraft development programmes and orders landed, the manufacturers had managed to deliver only 13 airliners by the end of 2009. UAC President Alexey Fyodorov stated that 2009 had seen the aircraft industry’s supply for the first time exceed the demand of the Russian carriers badly hit by the crisis, with some of them having to reject the aircraft being made for them. At the same time, several things happened in 2009, serving the reason for cautious optimism. For instance, the deliveries and actual operation of the VASO-built An-148 regional airliners and Il-96-400T freighters began, the plant in Ulyanovsk launched construction of the upgraded Tu-204SM prototypes, etc.

MILITARY AVIATION

Yak-130 already in Lipetsk
The Russian Air Force took delivery of its first production standard Yak-130 combat trainer ferried from the Sokol aircraft manufacturing plant in Nizhny Novgorod to the Combat and Conversion Training Centre in Lipetsk on 18 February. The aircraft was flown by the crew with the Russian Defence Ministry’s Chkalov State Flight Test Centre, who participated in the Yak-130 successful official trials completed late last year. Now, CCTC’s instructor-pilots will devise training and combat instructions for future combat pilots of the Russian Air Force will master the aircraft. CCTC expects several production Yak-130s more this spring, and then advanced combat trainers will start fielding with the Air Force academy in Krasnodar where most of RusAF flying personnel are trained.

Fifth generation Russian style: PAK FA flew
The first flying prototype of the Future Tactical Aircraft (Russian acronym PAK FA) performed its maiden flight in Komsomolsk-on-Amur on 29 January 2010. It is a prototype of the T-50 aircraft developed by the Sukhoi company under the Russian fifth-generation fighter development programme. According to Russian Premier Vladimir Putin speaking at a session of the government on that day, aircraft of the type are to be issued to the Air Force Combat and Conversion Training Centre in Lipetsk in 2013, with combat units to start accepting production PAK FA fighters starting from 2015.
The programme came on top in the Air Force-held tender and was given the green light in 2002. Having cleared all relevant development phases, the Sukhoi managed to manufacture T-50 prototypes last year and has launched the flight trials recently.


CONTRACTS AND DELIVERIES
MiG-29K/KUB enter service with Indian Navy
Vietnam to get more Sukhoi jets

Sukhoi fighters for Latin America
Sukhoi fighters remain the mainstay of Russia’s combat aircraft exports to various corners of the world. For instance, almost 40 Su-30MK-family aircraft, including knockdown kits, were shipped to India, Malaysia, Algeria and Indonesia last year. Sukhoi fighters are known well in Latin America as well, for Su-30MK2s have for several years been operated by the Venezuelan Air Force, which flying crews and command have given them rave reports. Su-35 took part in the Brazilian Air Force’s future fighter competition, and there are good reasons to believe that Sukhoi Su-35 and Su-30MK2 fighters will beef up the region’s air forces in the near future.

Record-setting hundred
Russian military aircraft deliveries in 2009
For the first time in almost two decades since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian aircraft industry managed in 2009 to build and deliver just over a hundred new and upgraded combat aircraft, which is almost a 1.5-times increase over the previous year. The largest increase was seen in the deliveries to the Russian Defence Ministry, with the number of fielded warplanes exceeding 60 during 2009. For the first time since the early 1990s, RusAF took delivery of as many as 31 brand-new MiG fighters. Aircraft manufacturers also made good headway in aircraft export. As before, the best results were produced by the Irkut Corporation that exported to India, Malaysia and Algeria a total of 38 Su-30MKI-family warplanes. Other important events of the year included the delivery of the first batch of MiG-29K/KUB carrierborne fighters to India and the first Beriev ‘EI’ AEW&C aircraft. Overall, the total number of the Russian-made aircraft exported last year stands at 46 units.

 
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