Kiev intends to leave the Ukraine-Russia-NATO SALIS program on the use of An-124 transport planes, the CEO of the Ukrainian aircraft maker said Wednesday.
KIEV (Sputnik) — Kiev intends to leave the trilateral Ukraine-Russia-NATO Strategic Airlift Interim Solution (SALIS) program on the use of An-124 transport planes in the Alliance's interests, the CEO of the Ukrainian aircraft maker Antonov Airlines, Oleksandr Gritsenko, said Wednesday. "We will participate [in the program] with the Russian company until December 31, and beginning January 1 we will carry out work to operate independently," Gritsenko told journalists. The SALIS program started in 2006, and involves Ukraine's Antonov Airlines and Russia's Volga-Dnepr Airlines, the world's largest operators of Antonov An-124 planes.
Read more: https://sputniknews.com/europe/20160907/1045054883/ukraine-russia-nato-antonov.html
Ruslan and the AN-124 could be forced out of business as Russia and Ukraine squabble
By Alex Lennane 09/09/2016
The future of the AN-124 aircraft is in serious doubt after Ukrainian manufacturer Antonov said it would not work with Russian companies after January 1 2017, and could halt international AN-124 operations.
Ukraine announced on Wednesday that it was leaving the trilateral Ukraine-Russia-NATO Strategic Airlift Interim Solution (SALIS), which would also see the end of Ruslan, the joint marketing agreement between Antonov Airlines and Volga-Dnepr.
CargoForwarder reported that Antonov had also announced a flight ban on all Russia-registered AN-124 operations outside of Russia – which could be a severe blow to Volga-Dnepr. The Loadstar was unable to confirm this however.
Volga-Dnepr has 10 AN-124s, and Antonov Airlines has seven of the aircraft, which are widely used in military operations as well as for commercial heavylift cargo.
With the end surely nigh for Ruslan, manufacturer Antonov will need a company to market its AN-124s. According to Cargo Facts, it has been in talks with AirX – a charter airline moving into cargo, which recently poached a number of Chapman Freeborn executives.
As Cargo Facts notes, why else would “six of its senior staff suddenly decide to work for a small charter airline that operated a handful of small passenger aircraft and one ancient narrowbody freighter”?
The row began when the Russian aviation authority threatened to stop using Antonov’s support services for AN-124s and re-engining the aircraft using a Russian company.
Antonov countered that as the designer of the aircraft and the Type Certificate holder, it was the only company able to work on or change the aircraft – and any which had been altered by other companies would not be fit to fly.
Antonov said: “In case of withdrawal of the AN−124−100 Ruslan civil aircraft from supervision by Antonov, the company will be forced to address international aviation organisations with a statement about the discharge of its responsibility for the safe operation of these airplanes on international air routes.
“Flight accidents could pose a threat to life and property of inhabitants of countries where the aircraft would be operated.”
However, yesterday the chief executive of Russian aircraft firm Ilyushin, Sergei Velmozhkin, said his company would begin research and development work on a new transport aircraft, with a scheduled in-service date of 2027.
Called the IL-106, it has proposed payloads of 80-120 tonnes – which would rival the payload of the AN-124.
The ongoing ‘war of words’ between Russia and Ukraine also explains why the latter approached China to work with it on a new line for the AN-255.
Volga-Dnepr was not immediately available for comment. http://theloadstar.co.uk/ruslan-124-forced-business-russia-ukraine-squabble/
They r grasping for straws, as Russia will find a way to continue using civilian AN-124s. Its AF is not affected.
China Intensely Investing in Creating Flexible and Capable Airborne Forces Read more: https://sputniknews.com/military/20160911/1045197033/china-airborne-forces.html
The first phase of the contract between China and Ukraine provides for the completion and upgrading of the second AN-225 at the Antonov factory in Kiev. The air force plane will be delivered to China in 2017.
Officially, China did not receive the technical documentation and rights to the production of thr An-225, but, taking into account the widespread corruption in Ukraine and Chinese interests in this aircraft, we can suppose that the chances that China will receive all necessary documentation and technological secrets is very high.
According to the Chinese side, the deal presumes the creation of an AICC-based production line for the assembly of this type of aircraft and the formation of the production base of spare parts to them in China.
The second phase of the contract provides for the establishment in China of two large production facilities for the new AN-225, located in Central and Southern China. Antonov will deliver the necessary technological and purchase production equipment for the Chinese. The first completely redesigned AN-225 is expected to start flying in 2019.
China is a booming economy, has huge funds, and can build from 10 to 15 AN-225s per year, creating up to 2025, a military cargo fleet of 50-75 [their total payload capacity=200-300 Il-76s/Y-20s!] with which they can design a worldwide force, or create an effective air bridge between the Chinese mainland and islands in the South China Sea which China claims. AN-225 planes can be adjusted to be air supply tankers. One AN-225 can carry 5-6 Chinese tanks or 12 armored personnel carriers.
The AN-225 is powered by six Progress D-18T engines with 25,000 kgf traction and the same engine as for an AN-124. There is, however, a drawback. Since the beginning of 1984, the Motor Sich plant in Zaporizhia has only produced 188 such engines, the majority before 2001. The Progress D-18T engine is an older model and has not been modernized. It has a short life span and a specific fuel consumption that is 40% higher than American or British engines. China has two types of V-generation multirole aircraft (J-20 and J-31) that uses stealth technology. If China manages to produce upgraded Progress D-18T engines, it will be able to build strategic "invisible" bombers like the American B-2 bomber. http://katehon.com/article/why-does-china-want-produce-225-largest-military-cargo-plane-world
..China is working on its own analog to Russia's D-30KP2, "which they want to put in the H-6K bomber and the Y-20 military transport plane. But this is far from the latest in aircraft engine design. I believe that the recently concluded agreement between China and Ukraine on cooperation involving the [super-heavy transport] An-225 Mriya suggests that the Chinese will try to get the Ukrainians' technology, or create it themselves with Ukrainian assistance, to give them heavy-duty engines for their military transport aircraft." Read more: https://sputniknews.com/military/20160908/1045106424/china-military-aviation-capabilities-russian-analysts.html
China's military, still largely dependent on railroads for moving troops and heavy freight, could gain a lot from having the gigantic aircraft.
The plane, the AN-225 Mriya, holds 240 world records for its size and strength. It has six massive engines creating over 300,000 pounds of thrust, and the plane can reportedly carry a 200-ton load nearly 2,500 miles. Such capability would be game-changing for the People's Republic of China. “It would provide China with the large and global lift that not even the US has possessed, except by rental,” wrote Peter Singer, an avid China watcher on Popular Science. “It’s large enough to carry helicopters, tanks, artillery, even other aircraft.” For the most part, as Singer mentioned, China will rent the massive planes, but the agreement does allow for China to domestically build An-225s. Additionally, the Center for Strategic and International Studies uncovered the fact that China has been developing large, military-grade runways, as well as military hardened hangars on it's reclaimed islands in the South China Sea. Having massively improved freight dynamics in the region could greatly benefit China. But the herculean plane lends itself to civil applications too. China could easily use it to move construction supplies, to offload its glut of steel, or to bring supplies to its several building projects as part of the "One Belt, One Road" initiative. As Marcus Weisgerber at DefenseOne points out, the adoption of old, soviet-era technology from Ukraine is an instance of history repeating itself, as China's sole aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, is also a refurbished Ukrainian hull. http://www.businessinsider.com/china-purchasing-an225-plane-2016-9
Last edited by Tsavo Lion on Wed Sep 21, 2016 9:19 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : add more quotes,links, video)