Ukraineian engine design bureau Ivchenko-Progress has started developing a new turbofan for the Antonov regional jet family.

Chief designer Igor Kravchenko, speaking at a press briefing in Zaporozhye, said the engine, designated the AI-28, was intended to equip aircraft types with capacity for 80-130 seats.

"We've already done a great deal of preliminary research to that effect and are now hammering out technical specifications jointly with Antonov," he adds.

Antonov's An-148 and An-158 twinjets, and the derivative -168 and -178 variants, are powered by Ivchenko-Progress D-436 engines. But Kravchenko says the AI-28 engine is to have a considerably higher bypass ratio and greater fuel efficiency.

"We'll create its key components from scratch using our substantial stock of know-how," he notes. He estimates that development work on the new engine will take around six years.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news