A debate has unfolded in Russia over whether to invest further in the MiG-31 series or to concentrate funding on the Sukhoi Su-35. United Aircraft’s Sokol factory in Nizhny Novgorod continues to deliver MiG-31BM multirole aircraft modified from MiG-31 interceptors built earlier. The plant’s general director, Alexander Karezin, reported that the company handed over 15 last year, and the plant “holds a firm order for about sixty MiG-31BMs due for delivery in 2011-2018.” He added, “This is a considerable contribution to the national defense of the country.”
United Aircraft Corporation
The Russian navy introduced the first of a planned eight Antonov An-140-100 twin turboprops at Ostafievo naval air station. This follows delivery of four similar aircraft to the Russian Air Force, three of which are based at Chkalovsky airbase. But it is still unclear whether the Russian ministry of defense will order the Ukrainian design in quantity.
Russia’s aircraft interiors industry achieved 15-percent growth in revenue last year, much of it from work on business and private aircraft. According to the country’s Association of Aviation Interiors Companies, its 17 members account for 90 percent of completions work for indigenously produced aircraft.
Sukhoi announced this week that the “design and development” (D&D) phase of the Russo-Indian prospective multifunctional fighter (PMF), also known as the fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA), has been completed. The aircraft is a joint development with India of the T-50 that Sukhoi has already designed and flown for the Russian Air Force. “The airplane has been shaped completely,” the manufacturer stated.
Ilyushin and the Russian defense ministry have begun a joint flight-test and certification program for the Il-76MD-90A airlifter. The first flight in the program took place on March 18 at the Gromov Flight Test and Research Institute, in Zhukovsky, using the prototype (RA-78650) that first flew from the Aviastar manufacturing facility in Ulyanovsk in September last year.
The Indo-Russian joint venture Multirole Transport Aircraft Ltd. (MTAL) exhibited for the first time at Aero India in Bangalore this week. Under the leadership of general director N.C. Agarwal, the company was established by a framework agreement signed in October 2012 between Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) and United Aircraft Corporation’s Transport Aircraft division.
Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) expects to be able to sell between 50 and 70 of its new Superjet SJ-100 airliners to Indian carriers and another 250 to operators in China. During a press conference at this week’s Aero India show in Bangalore, UAC president Mikhail Pogosyan specifically mentioned Air India and Go Air as sales prospects for the narrowbody.
Indian-Russian joint venture Multirole Transport Aircraft Ltd (MTAL) is making its airshow debut at the Aero India event in Bangalore this week.
The Russian government has granted Sukhoi Civil Aircraft loan guarantees worth $1 billion under the credit line opened by Kremlin-controlled VEB bank to finance work related to the manufacture of Superjet SSJ-100s. The government decree, issued on December 29, calls for SCAC to repay the VEB loan within 12 years starting in January 2015. The government guarantees expire in July 2026.
Despite realignment, increased government investment and the appearance of political resolve, the Russian airliner industry has achieved little success in expanding its civil production over the past four years. Although it has nearly doubled its delivery total, from 11 jetliners in 2009, to 10 in 2010, 18 in 2011 and 19 in 2012, the industry’s hopes to launch a challenge to the Western world’s manufacturing powers remain unfulfilled and distant.