Ukrainian airline AeroSvit launched passenger service with an Antonov An-148-100 regional jet prototype on a June 2 flight between the capital Kiev and Kharkov in the northeast of the country, replacing an An-24 and a Yak-42 previously used on this route. The 70-seat regional jet was the aircraft used by Antonov to complete certification, according to a representative from Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. (OAK).
Voronezh Aircraft Production Association
Antonov, responding to “strong market demand,” has launched a stretched version of its much-delayed 86-passenger An-148 regional passenger aircraft. The An-148-200 would seat 99 passengers in single-class and be ready for service entry in 2010, said Antonov general designed Dmytro Kiva. “We have identified a market for more than 200 aircraft out to 2015,” he said. “We’ll be ready to flight test the aircraft in 2009.
After many years of struggle, Ukraine’s aerospace industry appears headed in an upward trajectory, as a promising new civil aircraft program hits the market and some Russian defense market analysts predict Ukrainian military export activity to surpass that of its neighbor over the next decade.
The first deliveries of the Antonov An-148 are imminent, general designer Dmytro Kiva said on Tuesday during a press conference here at the Paris Air Show. The first eight examples of the 85-seater will go to Kazakh Scat airlines.
The 80-seat Antonov An-148-100 won type approval from Russian and Ukrainian authorities in late February, marking the successful completion of the first new regional jet design in the former Soviet Union since the fall of the Iron Curtain.
Antonov expects its new An-148 regional jet to win CIS AP-25 certification this month and to deliver the first production example, built by Ukraine’s Aviant, to Kazakhstan’s SCAT Airlines early next year, according to the Ukrainian design bureau’s deputy general designer, Oleksander Kiva.
An-148–Due for imminent certification by Russian and Ukrainian civil aviation authorities, the An-148 stands nearly ready for delivery this year to Russian launch operator Pulkovo Aviation of St. Petersburg and Skat Airlines of Kazakhstan. Siberia’s KrasAir, holder of a firm lease order with Ilyushin Finance Company for ten examples, expects the first of its airplanes to arrive early next year.
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