EASA next generation for An-148 after Russian approval

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Russia's civil aviation authority has granted type certification to the Antonov An-148, after a test programme covering more than 1,200h and 600 flights.

Antonov and Russia's Interstate Aviation Committee (MAK) now plan to validate the regional twinjet's certification under European Aviation Safety Agency standards.

An-148 testing began in August 2004 using two aircraft built by the Aviant plant in Kiev. Production is also being undertaken by the VASO plant in Voronezh.

The certification package from MAK includes the An-148's Progress D-436-148 powerplant, built by Motor Sich, and the AI-4500-MS auxiliary power unit.

Aviant has 10 An-148s in assembly, seven of which are for Kazakh carriers Berkut Air and SCAT. Russian outsize freight specialist Polet recently signed for 10 An-148s for delivery from next year from Ilyushin Finance.

VASO general director Mikhail Sushpanov says that the plant will complete its first two An-148s by the end of this year.

The plant's production effort has been being reactivated following the approval in January by the Russian government's military industrial commission of United Aircraft (OAK) plans for the assembly of 78 An-148s at VASO between 2007 and 2012.