Recommended Posts

China and Ukraine agree to restart An-225 production



credit Antonov



China and Ukraine have signed an agreement to recommence production of the Antonov An-225 'Cossack' strategic airlifter, media from both countries have reported.


The agreement signed between the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) and Antonov on 30 August gives China access to the aircraft's designs and technologies for the purposes of domestic production, according to China's STCN news organisation and the Ukrainian Business Channel (UBR).


Powered by six Progress D-18T engines and having demonstrated a world-record payload of 253.82 tonnes, the An-225 (named Mriya in Ukraine) is the largest transport aircraft ever to have flown. Having been originally built to carry the Soviet Buran orbiter, the aircraft made its maiden flight in 1988. Only one aircraft was ever finished to an airworthy standard and flown, and while work on a second example was begun it had become clear by mid-2001 that funding would no longer be provided and the project was shelved. The sole aircraft to be completed is now chartered by Antonov Airlines to fly outsized cargo throughout the world.


According to the reports, China now plans to fly the first of an unspecified number of An-225s in 2019.



The new agreement begins discussions to allow Airspace Corporation of China and Antonov to resume assembly of the second An-225 in phase one. A follow-on second phase would restart series production of the heavy airlifter in China under license, Antonov says. Both phases would be initiated after the signing of separate contracts.


Revival of Aging Ukrainian Aircraft AN-225 May Serve Chinese Space Program


Giant AN-225 plane deal: What China & Ukraine get out of it?





General characteristics


Crew: 6
Length: 84 m (275 ft 7 in)
Wingspan: 88.4 m (290 ft 0 in)
Height: 18.1 m (59 ft 5 in)
Wing area: 905 m2 (9,740 sq ft)
Aspect ratio: 8.6
Empty weight: 285,000 kg (628,317 lb)
Max takeoff weight: 640,000 kg (1,410,958 lb)
Fuel capacity: 300,000 kg
Cargo hold – volume 1,300 m3 (46,000 cu ft), length 43.35m, width 6.4m, height 4.4m
Powerplant: 6 × ZMKB Progress D-18 turbofans, 229.5 kN (51,600 lbf) thrust each



Maximum speed: 850 km/h (528 mph; 459 kn)
Cruising speed: 800 km/h (497 mph; 432 kn)
Range: 15,400 km (9,569 mi; 8,315 nmi) with maximum fuel; range with 200 tonnes payload: 4,000 km (2,500 mi)
Service ceiling: 11,000 m (36,089 ft)
Wing loading: 662.9 kg/m2 (135.8 lb/sq ft)
Thrust/weight: 0.234



credit Antonov



credit Antonov




credit Antonov




credit Antonov



credit Antonov


Antonov An-225 Mriya | Landing + Takeoff at Leipzig/Halle Airport | Ан-225 Мрия

video is 4:47 min.





Giant Antonov An-225 Mriya Takes off Just!!!

video is 1:37 min.




Antonov 225 Mriya COCKPIT front-view rain takeoff from Keflavik! [AirClips]

video is 3:23 min.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Generally, anywhere the An-225 lands, it gets a turnout of spectators. Here is a recent example. 16th of May, 2016


Antonov An-225 Mriya: Video shows the moment world’s biggest plane touches down in Australia for the first time



Tens of thousands of people turned out to witness the arrival of the world’s largest plane in Perth, Australia on Sunday.


The Antonov An-225 Mriya is the longest and heaviest airplane ever built. It is 84 metres long and weighs 175 tonnes without fuel. It has a maximum takeoff weight of 640 tonnes, including crew, and its wingspan is an astonishing 88.4 metres.


On its first-ever journey to Australia, it delivered a power generator from the Czech Republic to be used at a state mine site.


About 20,000 people lined the fence at Perth Airport to catch a glimpse of the “king of the sky,” The West Australian reported.


The world's largest aircraft, the Ukraine-built Antonov An-225 Mriya, is positioned after touching down at Perth Airport on May 15, 2016.  GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images




The world's largest aircraft, the Ukraine-built Antonov An-225 Mriya, is positioned after touching down at Perth Airport on May 15, 2016.  GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images




The world's largest aircraft, the Ukraine-built Antonov An-225 Mriya, is positioned after touching down at Perth Airport on May 15, 2016.  GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images


Monster Arrival | 9 News Perth

video is 3:01 min.





Antonov An-225 Mriya touches down in Perth Western Australia 15 May 2016

video is 3:08 min.





World's Biggest Plane: AN225 Mriya Landing in Perth

video is 4:44 min.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Chinese are being pragmatic and realistic about the deal by saying to the Ukrainian side: "you build one plane first and if it's capable of flying we'll buy it and order more; here's some cash for you so you can start working."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, DocM said:

The Chinese being pragmatic? 


Wow....that's a shocker :rofl:



I'm curious how the Ukrainian side fares on their side of the deal, if they're going to be lacking some Russian parts or not :D 


I mean the team that built the first An-225 in 1988 has probably retired already. Fortunately, the Antonov plant has been building other models since 1988.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Doc's post above.....nailed it perfect. Antonov and the particular Chinese freight services to be employed, are both going to make a bundle. The An-225 will definitely be used to transport launcher stages/parts across China to their various launch centers.


The An -225 is the An-124 on steroids. It had one use when built, the Buran, but global shipping has really developed as of late, enhancing the market for the An-225 and the An-124.


This contract is in two parts. Completion of the other An-225, then complete manufacturing will be in China under licence to Antonov. China is again extending another "olive leaf" on  the world stage which helps the interests of both parties. I see this as a major win for both sides.


The other An-225 was 70% complete, but not now, more like 70% robbed for common parts for the An-124's (some common parts are engines, single truck assemblies, avionics).


It will take a few years and a couple hundred million US dollars to complete. Even then, the whole point of the exercise for the second one, is to see if most of the "jigs" and documentation are present. The Chinese, if satisfied, will then sign on and start the modification process. I am sure, that even if small problems arrive, they will still go for the second contract. The Chinese are among the world leaders in many mega project area's and can easily handle this.


The future will be modern avionics, composites and new engines....engines similar to the GE CF6 series are ideal, as well as a few bigger monsters available today.

When the Chinese get done, it has been rumored that the present An-225 cargo record could be obliterated. The Chinese will also be involved in a modernized An-124.


The second An-225 is a single tail unit, which will probably continue (no Buran use). The second unit is presently stored in a few area at the Antonov facility.


Here is an older image...







I have seen images of one of the wings, will have to track them down when I have a chance.


As a side note, the An-225 has been hauling for many countries on a regular basis, Canada included (first appearance in Canada was 1989). It is based in Kiev, but operates commercially from London Luton Airport, along with a few of the An-124's. It has landed at more than 100 different airports. The An-225 even carries Atlas 5 stages for ULA , military loads and emergency equipment for various countries, satellites for Arianespace and monster wind turbine blades for China's turbine producers, to name a few. The An-225 has been used to ship equipment and supplies for many major disasters.



Time to feed Mriya – Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter



Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter


This might put things into context. Here an Airbus A-380 fuselage is loaded....on an An-124, not the An-225.



Polet Airlines An-124 swallowing Emirates Airbus A380






Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

The B-36 was nicknamed the "aluminum overcast" at 70m wingspan.  The An-225 truly deserves this title at 84m.  The Smithsonian Channel had a documentary a while back of a cargo run using the An-124. It was well worth seeing.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This topic is now closed to further replies.