MOSCOW, January 3 (Itar-Tass) —— State flight trials of the Ilyushin-76MD-90A jet, a modernized version of the military transport Il-76, also known as Il-476, will be over in the third quarter of 2014. Phase one of these trials are planned to be completed in the third quarter of 2013, Viktor Livanov, the CEO of the Lyuishin Aviation Complex, the developer of the jet, told Itar-Tass.
The industrial prototype built by UAC-Transport Aircraft, made its maiden flight in September 2012. According to Livanov, the aircraft is currently at the Ulyanovsk-based Aviastar-SP plant. It has already performed a number of in-plant flight tests and will soon fly to the Ilyushin test ground in Zhukovsky outside Moscow for the first stage of state flight trials.
“About 50 flights will be performed under phase one of state flight trials. A total of 22 flights will be made in Zhukovsky in the first quarter of 2013 to test the jet’s flight behavior. After that, about 28 flights will be performed from Zhukovsky and Chkalovsky airfields within the framework of state tests jointly with the customer,” Livanov said.
After phase of the state flight tests are over, the customer will make its preliminary opinion letter, and the jet’s technical documentation will be awarded the letter “O,” giving a go-ahead to the serial production at the Ulyanovsk-based Aviastar-SP aircraft builder.
Within phase two of special flight trials, various cargoes and paratroopers will be dropped from the jet. “It is planned to complete the entire program of flight trials in the third quarter of 2014. And after that, the first jets will be delivered to the customer,” he noted.
A state contract for 30 Il-476 jets to the Russian armed forces was signed in Ulyanovsk in the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin on October 4, 2012. The contract cost is 139.42 billion roubles.
The first mass prudiced Il-76MD-90A jet will come into service in 2014. It is planned that by 2018-202 the state will buy about a hundred such jets.
The Il-476 is a modernized version of the Ilyushin Il-76MD heavy transport aircraft. The prototype was shown publicly for the first time during the unofficial ceremony at the Aviastar-SP production facility in Ulyanovsk in mid-December, 2011. The Il-476 is the first aircraft of this type assembled in Russia. Previous Il-76 modifications were manufactured at the Tashkent-based TAPO plant in Uzbekistan, which is not controlled by Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC). Compared to the basic model, the Il-476 features a reinforced wing, modernized landing gear, new Perm PS-90A-76 engines and a digital cockpit. Altogether, the improvements are aimed at increasing the aircraft’s payload from 50 to 60 tons, as well as the range by 27% and to reduce the fuel consumption by 18%. The plane can develop a speed of up to 850 kilometers per hour.