Thursday, March 21, 2013

Russia will receive its first 3 IL-476 / IL-76MD-90A aircraft in 2014

According to the chief designer of the Ilyushin IL-476 / IL-76MD-90A, the first 3 aircraft will be delivered to the Russian Air Force in 2014. Viktor Livanov, the general director of Ilyushin had earlier put the number at just 2.

The IL-476 / IL-76MD-90A had its maiden flight last September and is currently conducting a series of trial flights. These tests will be used to gather data for any changes to the aircraft should those be necessary.

Last October, the Russian Defense Ministry signed a $4 billion contract with the United Aircraft Corporation for the delivery of 39 new aircraft. That number has since been increased to 48 IL-476 according to General Vladimir Benediktov of the Russian Air Force.

Russia's current transport fleet is currently quite outdated with no new deliveries in almost 20 years. Most aircraft date back to the former Soviet Union and in need of replacement.

The IL-476 is manufactured at Aviastar in Ulyanovsk, which hopes to build up to a 100 IL-76MD-90A aircraft by 2020 for Russia. Discussions are underway over a possible contract for the IL-78MK-90, a combined refuelling tanker and transport version of the IL-476.

The IL-476 is a modernized version of the IL-76 aircraft, while retaining the basic airframe of the legacy aircraft. The IL-476 specifications are:
  • a crew of 6
  • a length of 46.6 m
  • a wingspan of 50.5 m
  • a height of 14.76 m
  • a wing area of 300 m^2
  • a fuselage diameter of 4.8 m
  • a maximum speed of 830 km/hr
  • a maximum ceiling of 12000 m
  • a range of 5400 km (40 ton payload) or 4100 km (50 ton payload)
The IL-476 has added a new wing, digital flight control system, new cockpit with digital displays and four PS-90A-76 turbofan engines, each delivering 16000 kg of thrust.

The installation of PS-90A-76 engines allow the IL-476 to meet all ICAO noise and emission requirements. Their efficiency reduces fuel consumption by 12 percent at cruise speed and increases range by 18 percent.

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