First Post-Soviet Russian Airliner Takes Maiden Flight

By Staff Writer | May 30, 2017
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Photo courtesy of United Aircraft Corp.

Photo courtesy of United Aircraft Corp.

Irkut Corp., a United Aircraft Corp. (UAC) company, completed a successful maiden flight of its MC-21-300 commercial airliner, UAC said. The 30-minute flight took place at Irkutsk Aviation Plant in Siberia. It flew at an altitude of some 3,280 feet. This is said to be Russia’s first large airliner in the post-Soviet era.

The flight checked inflight stability and controllability, as well as the controllability of the power plant. A simulated landing approach was performed, along with a flight over the runway, consisting of climbing and turning.

“Flight mission is accomplished,” test pilot Oleg Kononenko reported. “The flight went in the normal mode. There are no obstacles revealed preventing the tests continuation.”

Yury Slyusar, UAC president, said he anticipates demand in the MC-21 segment to be about 15,000 new aircraft in the next two decades. “I’m sure the airlines will appreciate our new aircraft,” he said.

The new airliner can carry 163 to 211 passengers. UAC said the MC-21 features the largest fuselage diameter in the narrow-body category. The pilot cabin is ergonomic, and the aircraft introduces advanced avionics. UAC said it has firm orders for 175 MC-21s.

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