Russian Aviation Industry

Discussion in 'Science & Technology in Russia' started by José Moreira, Oct 24, 2013.

  1. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    An interview with Sergey Chernyshev of TsAGI about the 2020 project; I previously thought that this would simply be an airplane project, but it seems that it is something more interesting:

    http://www.aviaport.ru/digest/2013/10/21/266123.html

    Google translation with some fixes:


    The Executive Director of the Central Institute Aerohydrodynamic. Professor NE Zhukovsky (TsAGI) Sergey Chernyshev told the "News" on the project of the future - "Airplane 2020."

    - Sergey Leonidovich, which is a project of "The plane-2020"?

    - "Airplanes 2020" - the code name of the state contract that we signed with the Ministry of Industry. It will last until 2015. We TSAGI serving as head performer, although this work we immediately agreed to do in partnership with the main potential consumer of the results - the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC).

    At first glance it may seem that the project "Airplane 2020" aims to create a plane that has to climb into the sky in 2020, but this is not the case. "The plane-2020" - is primarily a technological basis of the aircraft of the future, then there is a certain set of innovative technologies that are at the turn of 2020 will form the basis of a new competitive domestic aircraft.

    - What will be the concrete result of this work?

    - We want to work out some potentially attractive market for future aircraft concepts, or, in other words, the technology demonstrators.

    - There is a belief that "the aircraft-2020" will be in demand in the market?

    - Monitoring of market trends will be carried out throughout the three years of the project. These tasks are mainly engaged in the UAC.

    - What market niches found most promising?

    - We consider the multiple market niches: in wide-body aircraft segment explores options for long-haul and medium-haul, single-aisle segment interesting options for a capacity of about 130 and 220 seats, which will complement the range of domestic aircraft Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ 100) and MS-21. We also consider the concept of a new regional jet, the new transport aircraft, as well as a supersonic business jet.

    All niches have their own characteristics. For example, is important for long-haul efficiency and speed at cruising area. Here we have, in addition to the traditional layout of the fuselage, wing, consider a non-traditional layout "flying wing". This scheme allows a 20-25% improve aerodynamic efficiency, reduce resistance for the same weight. For regional aircraft, flying at close range, on the contrary, the speed is not so important. But the big difference here is fuel efficiency and therefore profitability to ensure the availability of transport. Also, all the more important for this class of aircraft are environmental requirements. Therefore, as one of the options we are considering regional turboprop aircraft machine. But it is important for the transport plane, so that he can use for short take-off and landing, and sometimes unpaved strip.

    - There is much said about the use of composites in aircraft construction. You are working in this direction?

    - The new domestic aircraft MS-21, which should reach the market in 2017, the first time used to create a composite wing. This allowed to increase the wing aspect ratio and thus improve the aerodynamics. The experimental wing now produced in Austria, our TSAGI them from there delivered to the test. In the subsequent production of the wings of the Russian company will "Aerocomposite" now under construction on new plants in Ulyanovsk and Kazan. Subject composites will be reflected in the project "The plane-2020."

    - You mentioned the supersonic aircraft. We are talking about the revival of the Tu-144?

    - Not really. The Tu-144 was designed for about 150 passengers and weighed about 200 tons Today we are talking about a new generation of supersonic aircraft, which from the point of view of the market will be in a niche business aviation. It is an expensive machine, focused on wealthy people for whom time is important. In the framework of the project "The plane-2020" we consider supersonic aircraft flying at cruising speed 1.8-2M, which is about twice the speed of sound. This speed is a technological barrier for use in a conventional aluminum airframe materials. If fly at a faster rate, the aircraft will be heated so that the aluminum starts to lose its strength properties. Other technological barrier is the use of jet engines. Up to 3M can use regular turbojet engines, and at higher speeds, they cease to be effective. It is necessary to use the so-called ramjet engine.

    It has been over 40 years since the establishment of the Tu-144, which, along with the Anglo-French Concorde was the first generation supersonic passenger aircraft. From these machines refused for reasons of efficiency (supersonic flight of more than subsonic), as well as the problems associated with the sonic boom. We have made progress in supersonic technology and better understand how to look like a supersonic jet. There are serious developments to reduce the sonic boom. As we work together with JSC "Company" Sukhoi "already offered images of supersonic aircraft weighing about 50 tons, representing business jets. Study is under 100-ton supersonic aircraft.

    - It is known that the SSJ 100 was created in international cooperation and there are a lot of foreign components. The same applies to the MS 21. Recur if the story was a "plane-2020"?

    - We need to create a competitive plane, it's the main thing. Therefore, providers are able to offer competitive systems for aircraft, should be involved in its creation.

    When you create a plane and we have a serious organizational problem - after the plane is created, it is necessary to certify, not only in Russia but also abroad. Certification agencies in Europe and the United States have always supported their business. Therefore, if the vendor is reputable among businesses of this region, this certification is a lot easier. SSJ 100 certification in Europe took place in record time thanks to the fact that a number of suppliers of critical systems such as avionics, landing gear, control system, were European.

    Today, there are instances when our companies - suppliers of specific systems or subsystems compete with Western. For example, the Ulyanovsk Instrument Design Bureau delivers display systems for aircraft. This system of category "A" if it fails, the plane will fly blindly. This company has won the tender for the supply of display systems for the MS-21, the company Thales. In the case of the aviation industry is gradually improving, and I am confident that our companies can and should be providers of a first and second levels for our aircraft manufacturers.
    Carlo likes this.
  2. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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  3. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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  4. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    Airliner production in 2013:

    Superjet 24
    An-148 6
    An-140 3
    Tu-204/214 2
    Il-96 1

    This is a very low number, but only 19 were produced last year . The numbers have evolved from catastrophic to merely bad:

    2009 11
    2010 10
    2011 18
    2012 19
    2013 36

    Sukhoi target for 2014 is 40 Superjets which would be a nice improvement, but the 24 produced in 2013 were the target for 2012, so...
  5. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The Russian civilian aircraft industry is in much worse shape than the military. But the Superjet is a good project, is doing well (Mexican operator Interjet is 100% satisfied with the aircraft and customer support) and probably will be the start of the recovery. The Tu-204SM project, though, seems to be in a dead end, according to Russian sources. There are no orders from airlines of Tu-204 and Il-96, the very few built were delivered for the air force and the state fleet.
  6. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    Indeed, and things will not get much better until the end of the decade: the MS-21 will only start large-scale production by 2018, if the project is successful.

    Airbus and Boeing deliver more than 600 jets /year each, and that includes a lot of big birds. Embraer produces about 90 jets /year in the SSJ class. Hopefully the SSJ will help the whole industry reach at least that level before the MS-21 comes along. Mikhail Pogosyan mentioned that the target for the future is "in the 50-60 per year range".
  7. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    The Tu-204 and Il-96 were ill-fated from the start I think. The classic Soviet sphere of influence is largely gone (where there were lots of rather large economies that still suffered Western embargoes and what not, and thus presented large viable markets) and the relevant market segments elsewhere were and remains saturated by the B+A duopoly. It's difficult to get into that game from the blue so to speak and frankly, it's not worth it for the time being.

    The SSJ100 and MS-21 stand a much better chance at establishing themselves (and the SSJ is definitely on its way), crawling up in the midst of Embraer and Bombardier in a slightly more penetrable environment. Russian civil aviation industry shouldn't bother with long haulers for quite some time ahead in my opinion, maybe things will look better in the future. That said, I think there is still room to explore further military applications of the extant "big" designs. Now there is a SIGINT/ACP version of the Tu-204/214, and the Il-96 could be put to good use as an AWACS platform, perhaps even as an aerial tanker (as the current Il-78 and A-50 are less than optimal for the job, both stemming from the same bulky Il-76 airlifter). In fact, the Il-96 was proposed as a tanker by Ilyushin a few years ago, for the USAF. :D
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2014
  8. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The Tu-204 and Il-96 were conceived under a completely different political and economical environment, where Aeroflot and Eastern European carriers were not allowed to buy aircraft from the other side of the Iron Curtain. Anyway, if it weren't for the deep crisis of the 90's in Russia that prevented them reaching real mass production, they would have had a decent chance, as they were very modern for the time (FBW, high bypass turbofan engines).
    And fortunately for Russia, the Chinese ARJ21 is very behind schedule and still isn't operational (and this despite having the participation of Western manufactures, like GE, Rockwell Collins and Honeywell). If not, competition would be much tougher.
    The Tu-204 will survive as a platform for special military applications (PU, SUS, R, SR) and Il-96 as a VVIP transport. Production will remain as of now, 1 or 2 of each completed each year. Tupolev tried to keep the Tu-204 as a modern and competitive airliner with the SM program, but it will likely be cancelled as no airline seems interested. The new tanker and AWACs for the VVS, however, will come from the deep modernization of the Il-76, the Il-476 (MD-90A).
  9. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The only Il-96 delivered in 2013:
    http://russianplanes.net/id124075
    It is a PUM1, a very beautiful plane complete with all the satellite communications paraphernalia to keep the president and other officials linked to Russia anywhere in the world.
  10. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    Yes, I edited that in before you replied. Phew. :) 'Twas a pretty decisive factor when they were first conceived, so.

    Yeah, I am aware of that and I don't think it's all that great. The Il-476/76-MD-90A surely is a welcome upgrade, but the baseline design is outdated and a modern glass cockpit, new engines and various composite parts don't quite make up for the way the platform itself is lagging behind foreign modern airlifters with far more refined aerodynamics, more spaceous interiors and such. In essence, it's still a 1960's era aircraft, and that's not gonna cut it in the long run.

    I mean, I'll concede that it's enough for the time being, as a long needed update of the venerable and proven workhorse Il-76 in the airlifting role, but I really disagree with the current plan to have it make up the basis for a whole new set of derivative-derivatives with completely different roles. OK, possibly as stop-gap measures then... But IMO there is an urgent need for new thinking on the matter.
  11. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    In fact, there is a completely new design intended to replace the Il-76, the An-70. The problem is that the company is Ukrainian, and though Russia and Ukraine have signed recently (another) treaty for joint production of this plane, its future is very uncertain.
  12. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    Apparently there will be a consolidated state order of about 20 Tu-204SM, so that will keep it alive for a few more years. Cuba stated last year that they want to buy 2 Tu-204SM and 3 Il-96.

    I read that Iran was interested too, but the PS-90A2 engines of the SM were developed in a joint project with Pratt & Whitney and supposedly they are subject to USA sanctions because they use P&W patents. I'm not sure is the newer PS-90A3 is free from those constraints. If so there could still be an opportunity to produce some more for Iran and other countries under US sanctions.
  13. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    All SuperJets manufactured so far by date of first flight and Customer:

    f_d3d3LnBsYW5lcGl4LmNoL1N1a2hvaVN1cGVyamV0MTAwX1RpbWVsaW5lX0ZpcnN0RmxpZ2h0cy5qcGc=.jpeg
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  14. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Very interesting chart!
    By the way, Russian Planes page has an excellent resource of produced Soviet and Russian aircraft, mostly transport and civilian:
    http://russianplanes.net/registr
    The page is in Russian only, but navigation is simple and with a web translator anyone can understand the data.
    I am curious about Aeroflot's operation of the Superjet in 2013. In 2012, this aircraft was responsible for 40% of all technical issues the company had, even though it had a small part of the fleet. Mexican Interjet, on the other hand, stated last year that they had more than 99% of reliability, Mexican pilots giving it the nickname "El Tanquecito" (Little Tank). By logic, we should expect that Aeroflot's Superjet fleet must have reached a higher degree of reliability, specially since they started receiving the new aircraft with "full configuration" (the first ones didn't comply with Aeroflot's requirements and are being gradually replaced).
  15. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    Aeroflot likely had to deal with the bulk of its teething issues being a launch customer (much like how Armavia had quite a lot of issues as well). This is typical, and as you say it now sounds like that particular phase is more or less over.

    This recent RIA article mentions exactly that:
    http://en.ria.ru/business/20140118/186638263/Sukhoi-Plans-to-Market-New-SuperJet-Plane-in-2016.html

    ...And goes on reinforcing the 200+ order figure etc. Time will tell, but it sure looks like the endeavour has a bright future.
  16. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Russian avionics company KRET seeks to be the first such company to get international certification for its products:
    http://www.russianelectronics.ru/leader-r/news/russianmarket/doc/66868/
    This will allow the MS-21 to be sold abroad with more than half of its electronic components being from Russia. Also, in the future the Superjet (which now features French avionics) to have two-thirds replaced by Russian components.
  17. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    According to what I read in an Airliners.net forums, Aeroflot had more incidents with the Superjet in 2013 than in 2012 (http://www.airliners.net/aviation-f...5989354&searchid=5997478&s=Superjet#ID5997478). What is most interesting, however, are two facts that surely are connected: 1- Aeroflot is the only customer that didn't hire the Supercare program offered by Superjet International, thus providing its own maintenance to its SSJ fleet; 2- all other operators, including Yakutia which flies these planes in very extreme weather conditions, are having almost no issues and are fully satisfied with these planes.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2014
  18. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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  19. José Moreira

    José Moreira High Commissar Staff Member

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    SSJ100 Long Range First commercial flight

    On March 4, 2014 the first SSJ100 in the long range version entered into revenue service. The aircraft MSN 95033 in service with Gazpromavia airline made its first commercial flight from Moscow (Vnukovo airport) to Khanty Mansiysk (Autonomous Okrug in the West Siberia).
    This is the first of ten SSJ100 Long Range ordered by Gazpromavia in full economy class with 90 seats. The aircraft, which has a range of 4578 km, is equipped by the SaM146 engine with increased take off trust (5%).
  20. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    Superjet 100 in special livery - 75 year anniversary of Sukhoi Design Bureau:
    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2014

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