Irkut has revealed more details about its MC-21 three-model family of airliners in the 150-210 passenger range. The $3 billion programme is designed to replace the ageing Tu-154 tri-jet.

Tenders will be issued soon inviting firms to bid for work on the programme, says Irkut.

The concept is to create a standard MC-21 family of three models with a seating capacity of 150, 180 and 210 passengers accommodated in a single class cabin.

Irkut president  says that tenders will be issued, which will “determine the suppliers of equipment and components, including the engine and avionics, for the new MC-21 aircraft”. 

 Oleg Demchenko

He adds that judging by the level of international co-operation on the Sukhoi SuperJet programme, it is hoped that the project will attract not just major Russian companies but world players such as Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce, Snecma, Honeywell, Rockwell Collins and Thales.

The planned timeframe will involve a draft design being submitted for analysis in August this year. The following year will be spent preparing a conceptual design, which will be followed by the construction of aircraft prototypes and the conducting of flight trials. The flight worthiness certificate is planned to be issued in 2015.

Under the Federal Task Programme for the Development of Aviation, $65.5 million has been allocated for the preparation of the draft design of the MC-21 and the launching of the conceptual design work.

Aims of the programme include: fuel economy improved by roughly 25% over existing aircraft; aircraft weight reduced by 10-15% compared to similar aircraft in operation today; and operating costs reduced by no less than 12-15%.

The MC-21 programme is being driven by Irkut and its subsidiary, the Yakovlev OKB Design Bureau, a systems integrator. The team has already partnered with several of Russia’s leading research and aerospace organisations, including the Ilyushin Joint-Stock Company, Tupolev Experimental Design Bureau, Beriev TANTK (Aviation Scientific-Engineering Complex at Taganrog) and the Sukhoi Civil Aircraft company.

The main manufacturing facility will be the Irkutsk Aviation Plant. It is planned to use a conveyer production method with a planned output of five to six MC-21s per month. Each aircraft will stay at the final assembly shop for less than two weeks, says the firm.

Demchenko says that, at this stage, 1,000 aircraft are envisaged in the production run. “This makes up 10% of the world market for such aircraft,” he says.


Source: Flight International