All true... you need skilled workers and you need engines and you also likely need to expand composite material manufacturing capacity and the avionics for the aircraft will have to be Russian as well so lots of industries are going to have to be invested in and lots of new jobs will be created, but unlike before when the prospects of Russian airlines perhaps buying 25% of their fleet as being Russian planes... now they can expect over 90% or 100% will need to be Russian products if they are good enough.
Also with the extra production capacity they will likely start canvassing the world looking for other customers of their new products now too and the Russian military will almost certainly look to start replacing old obsolete types with new aircraft... there are plenty of Il-38s and Il-20s that need replacing, and also Tu-154s and Tu-134s and other aircraft still in use in Russia and around the world.
There will be bottlenecks and problems and they will have to deal with those, but current demand for airlines for Russian air carriers is down due to Covid and they likely have rather more planes than they really need so not having to pay for leases on all those planes now likely is saving them money to be honest... and as actual demand expands more Russian types will enter the picture... Russian airlines might merge or cooperate to get the job done in a sensible way until the shortage of Russian planes has been dealt with.
It needs new engines to be competitive, and western alternatives had newer engines and were already available with bribes and likely claims that customers prefer modern western planes to old Russian types (which might be true but only for the most ignorant passengers... who will be more influenced by ticket price... as long as the plane isn't a WWII era biplane... like the AN-2...)
Now that western aircraft are not an option it becomes a good choice and with new engines even better.
The Il-106 was sabotaged by the west who killed it because it was competition for the C-17 and would have been better and much cheaper, so much better competition.
They also sabotaged other Russian aircraft to sell their own products.
The An-70 was strangled to reduce competition for the A-400M... which is ironic because the Il-476 and Tu-330 were strangled to protect the An-70 within Russian circles, and now they are all probably needed as useful and Russian... (Il-106, Il-476, Il-276, Tu-330).
They have a budget surplus and lots of new aircraft designs and new engine designs to start building... it is a very exciting time for workers in Russia.
Exactly... Russian business practises... not American... don't have shareholders... any huge company profits should be invested in improving production and paying the workers more and also as you say looking after their interests... nice houses not too far away from the factories and with CEOs and top managers living in the same areas their lowest paid workers live... no gated rich peoples areas separating the managers from the workers.
So is this what they are calling the Let-610? or is that a different aircraft and if the latter are the now in competition...
TVRS-44: in series – in four years
photo: Oleg Panteleev photo: Oleg Panteleev
Oleg Panteleev April 26, 2021
In February 2021, celebrating its 15th anniversary, Siberian Light Aviation (SiLA) organized a conference on "Development of regional and local aviation in hard-to-reach areas on Russian-made aircraft" on the Baikal island of Olkhon, which was attended by several dozen representatives of aviation authorities, operators and manufacturers of aircraft and helicopters. One of the conference reports was devoted to the TVRS-44 44-seat turboprop regional aircraft being developed by the Ural Civil Aviation Plant (UZGA JSC), which is designed to replace several types of obsolete regional airliners currently used by Russian carriers. The project will be implemented in record time: the first deliveries are scheduled for 2025. At the same time, contrary to popular belief, this will be a new aircraft, which from the L-610 chosen at first as a prototype will retain only external similarity and partially – the aerodynamic layout of the wing. Oleg Panteleev, Editor-in-Chief of the AviaPort industry agency, who attended the conference, spoke with Sergey Merenkov, Chief Designer, who presented a report on the TVRS-44, about the market potential, design features and key milestones of this project.
Today, no project starts without a market assessment. What aircraft should the TVRS-44 replace in the fleet of Russian airlines? And, looking more broadly, what is the aircraft's niche in the global market?
If we talk about Russia, the task of replacing the fleet of obsolete domestic regional aircraft has been standing for a long time. Initially, back in the USSR, in the XIII-XIV five-year plans, i.e. from 1991 to 2000, it was planned to replace the fleet of AN-24 and Yak-40 aircraft, and this is no less than 1300 aircraft. The Party and the government took appropriate decisions, and in the period from 1979 to 1983, the USSR Ministry of Civil Aviation formulated tactical and technical tasks: two companies, the Ilyushin Design Bureau and the Czechoslovak company Let, were ordered two aircraft. This is the well-known Il-114, then still 60-seater, and L-610, then 40-seater. Given the growth of the national economy and the development of the airfield network, 500 Il-114 aircraft and a thousand L-610s were required.
The Il-114 aircraft were intended for the Civil aviation Departments of the Central Regions, the North-West, the North Caucasus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltic States and Moldova. The L-610 aircraft, as a universal workhorse working from the ground, was supposed to cover the "north", all the Trans-Urals to the Far East, the highlands of Central Asia and Transcaucasia.
In general, our current TVRS-44 is designed to replace the fleet of regional aircraft with a capacity of 30-50 seats in all potential markets. Currently, approximately one thousand turboprop aircraft are operated in this class, such as the British BAe Jetstream 41, the Brazilian Embraer EMB-120, the German Dornier 328-100, the Swedish SAAB 340, and the Canadian De Havilland Canada (Bombardier). Dash 8 (in versions 100 and 200), Soviet AN-24, AN-26-100 and AN-26B-100, Western European ATR-42. Another 250 vehicles of this dimension are jet – powered, including the Yak-40, Fairchild Dornier 328JET, Embraer ERJ-135 and ERJ-140.
What markets is the aircraft aimed at? Only the EAEU, or do you have prospects in the far abroad countries of Southeast Asia, Africa, and South America?
We consider all the markets listed by you as potential for TVRS. I will correct – not only the countries of Southeast Asia, but the countries of all of Asia plus the Middle East. In Syria, for example, there are six Yak-40s that have long been in need of replacement.
How many TVRS aircraft can be produced in the next 20 years?
So far, we have been working on the production program for 2025-2035, which is designed to deliver 220 aircraft and a maximum production rate of 26 aircraft per year. Only the basic version of the aircraft was evaluated – a convertible cargo-passenger aircraft with 44 passenger seats.
The total volume of the production program can be estimated based on the prospects for deliveries of all developed options: cargo-for example, for the Russian Post, military transport, patrol, developed in the interests of both law enforcement agencies, Avialesookhrana, Rosrybolovstvo and other potential customers.
As of the beginning of 2021, 125 regional aircraft of the Yak-40, AN-24, An-26-100 and AN-26B-100 types remained in service in commercial and state aviation of Russia, a total of 184 such aircraft in the world. There is also a fleet of cargo planes, 186 vehicles, most of which are operated by the Ministry of Defense and other law enforcement agencies.
As you can see, there is little left to change. But the transportation market has shrunk for objective reasons. And if there is an aircraft that will allow you to restore flights that were stopped today and develop the market, then new prospects will appear.
Do you already have an understanding of what special versions can be created based on the aircraft? Perhaps a vehicle with a side door or ramp, ambulance, or patrol car?
Yes, we are working on all these listed options and a number of others. TVRS is designed by us as a basic aircraft for a large family.
How were the requirements for the aircraft formed?
In general, the requirements were set by the customer-the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, and are summarized in a document entitled "Tactical and technical task for the development work "Development of a turboprop regional aircraft" ("TVRS code")", approved on September 2, 2020.
UZGA JSC had already conducted a large-scale survey of potential customers-both commercial airlines and state-owned operators, in Russia and abroad, prior to the design process. In addition to correspondence, the work also included face-to-face negotiations, which made it possible to form the basic requirements for the future aircraft, which formed the basis of the TTZ.
In addition to the requirements of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, we looked at a number of absolute and specific parameters, layout features that have developed in the world since the creation of the AN-24 and Yak-40. We have tabulated these parameters. I will highlight a few: the presence of two luggage and cargo compartments and their specific volume per passenger, the location of the entrance door-ladder in the front part of the fuselage, the ability to withstand the speed in a circle at major airports at the level of 450-460 km / h.
Can I state the main provisions of the tactical and technical task? Passenger capacity, cargo and baggage handling capabilities, cargo – distance ratio?
The requirements were primarily due to the need to ensure a full replacement of the AN-24 and Yak-40 aircraft from the point of view of maintaining their base on the same unpaved airfields, with the same runway conditions. At the same time, the possibilities for temperature conditions and geography of application, including flights in natural icy conditions, will be wider.
The only thing in which the TVRS will be inferior to the AN-24 is in the maximum passenger capacity-44 seats against 48. But at the same time, the seat pitch will be 736.6 mm (29 inches) against 720 mm, and the specific capacity of luggage and cargo compartments is 0.27 m3 per passenger against 0.16, i.e. 1.7 times more.
The practical range of TVRS with a paid load of 5 tons will be 1200 km, with 44 passengers-2200 km, which is 500 and 900 km more than that of the AN-24, respectively. Cruising speed and altitude – 460-480 km / h and 7200 m, maximum cruising speed and maximum operating altitude – 530 km/h and 7620 m.
Without reducing the maximum take-off weight, the aircraft must be operated on a runway up to and including class "G", i.e. 1300 m long, regardless of the type of surface. With a reduced take-off weight, we plan to work with a runway length of 800-1000 m. Restrictions on flights from unpaved runways – ground density is not lower than 6 kgf / cm2, for strafing and taxiing we will provide 5-5. 5 kgf/cm2.
The TVRS will be piloted by a two-person crew, its avionics system will be digital with on-screen display and correspond to the CNS/ATM concept in the part applicable to regional aviation aircraft. The cockpit interface includes four 12.5-inch screens, two multi-function control panels for all technical equipment, from radar stations to aircraft transponders, and three integrated radio communication panels.
How will TVRS compare to competing products? Will it have unique features that make it stand out from the competition?
There are no unique features of TVRS – this is not the class of aircraft where revolutions are made. But we tried to go "around the envelope" of the best indicators achieved by classmates, with the exception, perhaps, of the maximum speed, which is not very compatible with basing on primers with a length of 1300 m. In terms of speed, we are inferior to jet aircraft, and, say, the same Dornier 328-100.
Separately, we should mention the capacity of luggage and cargo compartments – 12 m3 – here we surpass not only odnoklassniki, but also almost all existing aircraft of a higher class for 50-80 seats – ERJ-145, AN-140-100, CRJ-100 and CRJ-200, Dash 8-300 (Q300), SAAB 2000, Fokker 50, Il-114-100 Il-114-300, BAe ATP, ATR-72. We are second only to the 74-seat CRJ-700 and 78-seat Dash 8-400 (Q400). This is a time requirement – over the past 20 years, the nomenclature of so-called "associated" and postal cargo has shifted to relatively low densities of about 80-112 kg / m3.
The ability to convert from passenger to cargo-passenger and cargo variants is not a unique feature – EMB-120 and AN-140-100 are certified in such a technical person. But we offer options for 44 passengers and 12 cubic meters of cargo; 36 passengers and 16 cubic meters of cargo; 20 passengers and 27 cubic meters of cargo. Well, 45 cubic meters of cargo is out of any competition. The 1030x1780 mm rear cargo door allows loading in all combined versions and provides loading and transportation of "cargo 200". The dimensions of the cargo door allow you to carry a stretcher in the medical evacuation version or install a lifting device similar to those used on SSJ100 and An-148 aircraft in the EMERCOM of Russia, and in the configuration for Avialesookhrana, the door is designed with a sliding section that allows for parachute landing of firefighters.
We also expect to maintain the maximum take-off weight, which is at least one ton lower than the only commercially produced Odnoklassnik, the ATR – 42-600.
In addition, a feature that is not present in aircraft of this class is the capacity of fuel tanks, which provides a practical flight range of at least 5500 km. Of course, flying "on propellers" over such distances is not the greatest pleasure. But we look at this "range margin" more as the possibility of using a comparative large aircraft as a kind of" minibus", which, taking off from Yakutsk, for example, in Saskyli, can then follow to Tiksi, from there to Chokurdy, then to Moma and return to Yakutsk without refueling at any of the named intermediate airfields. Of course, at the same time, the maximum load capacity is not demonstrated, but this possibility, embedded in the aircraft, allows the operator to provide flexible routes to airfields that are problematic to provide fuel and lubricants.
To what extent was the basic design of the L-610 dogma?
The L-610 was considered as a prototype TVRS, but is not a basic design. Let me remind you of what our customer, the Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov, said on September 3, 2019: "We are not talking about launching production of this aircraft, but about creating a new turboprop aircraft based on the scientific and technical reserve of the L – 610 program."
In fact, it turned out to be a complete redesign of the prototype, i.e. the creation of a new aircraft. Equipment, materials and fasteners are 100% new and completely domestic. New is the fuselage, including the entire theory, cross-section, nose and tail, contours of the cockpit light, the entire structural and power scheme,the entire layout and suspension of the wing and tail.
The theory and design of the tail, the fairing of the wing with the fuselage and the fairings of the main landing gear supports have changed. New are the structural and power scheme of the wing and its execution from long milled panels. Flaps, ailerons, interceptors, and wing systems have been completely redesigned. Also, a new feature of the wing and tail design was the installation of heating elements of an electric thermal de-icing system.
To fulfill the technical specifications of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, it was necessary to lengthen the fuselage by more than a meter, apply the front location of the entrance door-ladder instead of the rear, increase the width of the fuselage on the floor by 10% (from 2020 to 2250 mm), move the wing completely beyond the theoretical contour of the fuselage, increase the capacity of the wing fuel tanks almost twice, and raise the maximum take-off weight by about 20%. The latter required the use of more powerful engines and a new reinforced chassis.
It is easier to say what remains in common with the prototype: this is the aerodynamic layout of the "smooth" wing, and then partially-only the profiling and the angle of the transverse V.
What are the targets for the cost of the aircraft and the cost of the flight hour?
The cost of a flight hour is set in the Technical specifications of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation and in 2020 prices is 150 thousand rubles. for a flight time of 150 hours per month, this includes direct operating costs and fuel costs, excluding lease payments. We have announced the price of TVRS at the level of 830 million rubles. excluding VAT (also in 2020 prices).
What decisions have been made on materials, basic production technologies, and the level of use of composite materials?
TVRS has a traditional all-metal prefabricated riveted airframe structure – fuselage, wing, keel and stabilizer. Composite materials will be used for flaps, interceptors, nose fairing and fuselage end, wing-to-fuselage fairing and fairings of the main landing gear supports. Also, the floors of the transport cabin, ceiling luggage racks and interior trim panels are made of composite materials. While the performance of rudders and ailerons is being discussed – I do not rule out the use of a conservative design.
What components and systems have already been selected? Earlier it was announced about the use of engines of the TV7-117 family, chassis, crew cabin glazing from liners mastered in production. What else to choose?
The choice of appearance and configuration has been completed for all systems and equipment, and it remains to determine some of the performers.
Yes, we do plan to use TV7-117ST-02 engines as a power plant – this is how UEC-Klimov JSC named the modification for TVRS, which is characterized by" cut-off " capacities (2300-2600 hp on takeoff instead of 2900-3100 hp for the basic version of the TV7-117ST-01 engine) and the installation of an oil radiator and exhaust pipe directly on the engine. The closed-loop oil system allows you not to drain and refuel the oil again when replacing the engine, all oil lines are very significantly shortened and guaranteed to be removed from the potential damage zone by non-localized fragments of turbine disks.
Switching to an electric launch instead of an air launch makes it easier to operate the aircraft. Currently, Mi-8 helicopters with TV2-117 engines, An-24 and AN-26 aircraft with AI-24 engines, and An-12 aircraft with AI-20 engines mainly fly beyond the Urals – all of them with electric start.
A modification of the AV-112 propeller with blades with a diameter of 3.6 m (like the SV-34) will be used – the developer of the propeller, PJSC Aerosila, gave it the name AV-44.
Taking into account the time allotted to us, we took a number of units, the creation of which requires a lot of time, including long-term tests to confirm compliance with certification requirements, from other mass-produced aircraft. This is a glazed cab light, the main landing gear struts and a number of less significant units.
Will UZGA develop any systems independently?
JSC UZGA will indeed develop and complete a number of systems independently. Among them are the steering control system, hydraulic system, fire protection system, fuel and drainage systems, oxygen system, emergency and rescue equipment, interior, household, passenger and transport equipment, general aircraft equipment control system, on-board maintenance system, ground handling facilities and a number of others.
Please name the key milestones of the project, both existing and planned.
Pre-contract work on the TVRS project was started by UZGA JSC back in December 2018 – more than 1.5 years of work on the prototype was quite enough time to confirm the decision on the need to create a new aircraft. The state contract was signed on December 25, 2020. In December 2021, the defense of the technical project and the mock-up commission are planned, and the start of working design will be given a little earlier. Initial certification is scheduled for December 2024.
Where do you plan to master the serial assembly of the aircraft? Will a glider assembly cooperation be formed, and is there any understanding of who can participate in it?
The question of serial assembly is still open. The final assembly of TVRS prototypes will be performed at our production facility in Yekaterinburg. Cooperation in the production of airframe assemblies is defined as a single one for experimental and production aircraft, and it considers the use of industrial sites in Taganrog, Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Nizhny Novgorod and Samara.
You said that it is planned to reach the serial production of 26 aircraft per year. By what time will it be reached?
We plan to reach the maximum assembly rate by the seventh year of mass production, i.e. by 2031.
Are there any estimates of pre-production costs?
The costs of pre-production and the labor intensity of production itself have already been estimated and have shown full compliance with the amount of financing provided for in the state contract.
How will the after-sales service system be built? Who will act as an integrator?
We expect to create the most flexible and" liberalized " after-sales service system, which provides for the full transfer of all possible technical operation competencies to airlines and partner service centers.
What parameters are laid down from the point of view of after-sales service – the planned complexity of maintenance, repair intervals?
All parameters are defined in the Technical Specifications of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, in particular, repairs are not provided, operation is carried out as of with a minimum interval of 500 flight hours.
Will the simulator be created, and if so, by whom and in what time frame? Where will flight and maintenance personnel be trained?
The creation of a complex of technical training tools is prescribed in the Technical Specifications of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation. It must be created simultaneously with TVRS certification and include a comprehensive Class D simulator. The developer of this simulator is assumed to be JSC "TsNTU "Dynamics".
Previously, the flight and technical personnel training center will be established on the basis of UZGA JSC.
Which potential operators and leasing companies are being negotiated with? Are there any intent protocols already in place?
We have held negotiations with nine airlines and signed protocols of intent. If we add the state aviation order currently being issued, the order portfolio will amount to about 200 aircraft.
The printed version of the article is published in the magazine" Vzlet " No. 3-4 / 2021