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Russia & CIS Observer

â„– 2 (35) november 2012

Russia & CIS Observer № 2 ( 35) nov e mbe r 20 12

from the publisher of


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More operators

Regional conundrum: Russian

for Sukhoi Superjet 100 ........................2

regional operators are in need

Evgeny Semenov

Russian Helicopters announces

of new aircraft ....................................15


several new programs ..........................6


Maxim Pyadushkin Art Director Andrey Khorkov Commercial Director Sergey Belyaev Advertising Manager Oleg Abdulov All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without the written permission of A.B.E. Media.

© № 2 (35), November 2012

Shifting trend in Russia’s air transport ......................................18

•DEFENSE Shift in priorities: analysis of Russia’s defense export to China........................8 Second life for Ilyushin Il-76 heavy lifter ........................................11

Top 20 Russian airlines in the first half of 2012........................20 •BUSINESS AVIATION

Phazotron-NIIR’s new radars ............12

Russian bizav fleet

Antonov An-70 transport resumes

set to grow further ..............................21

flight trials..........................................13 Su-30SM flight trials begin ................14


Russia, India launch MTA

The new face of the Russian space

preliminary design..............................14

program ............................................23

Tel./Fax: +7 (495) 933 0297 Correspondence: P.O. Box 127, Moscow, 119048, Russia

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More operators for Sukhoi Superjet 100 Maxim Pyadushkin


he list of airlines operating Russia’s new Sukhoi Superjet 100 regional jetliner is set to expand shortly. In the next few months, the manufacturer Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company plans to begin deliveries to more Russian customers and also to hand over the first examples to carriers in Indonesia and Laos. In a parallel effort, preparations are under way to deliver several SSJ 100s to the first Western operator, the Mexican carrier Interjet. These airframes will be delivered through SuperJet International (SJI), a joint venture between Russia’ Sukhoi and Italy’s Alenia

ber. Following the flight trials this “green” aircraft (serial no. 92023) arrived in Venice, the home town of SJI, on October 6. Customization work on the aircraft will be carried out at the SJI completion center at Marco Polo airport in Venice, whose hangar can accommodate three SSJ 100s at once. SJI will paint the aircraft in the Interjet livery and install a new passenger cabin interior designed by the Italian company Pininfarina (all previous SSJ 100s have a cabin from the US company B/E Aerospace). In the next few months the Russo-Italian JV expects to obtain an EASA supplementary type certificate for the newly equipped version of the aircraft.

The first SSJ 100 with the Interjet logo at the SJI hangar in Venice

Aermacchi. SJI is also responsible for customizing the airliners to meet the customer’s requirements. The first SSJ 100 for Interjet was assembled at SCAC’s production facility in Komsomolsk-on-Amur in Septem2

Interjet has 20 SSJ 100s on order for a total of $700 mln; 15 of these were ordered in 2011 and a further five got converted from options in summer 2012. All the aircraft will have 93 alleconomy seats. The Mexican aviation


authority validated the SSJ 100 type certificate in April 2012. Interjet is expected to receive its first SSJ 100 in March 2013. According to SJI CEO Nazario Cauceglia, the JV plans to deliver nine SSJ 100s to Mexico in 2013; the remaining 11 are to follow in 2014. All these airliners will be in the SSJ 100/95B baseline version, although Interjet earlier announced its intention to have some of the batch in the long-range variant. “Earlier this year together with SCAC specialists we conducted in-depth analysis of Interjet’s route network and came to a conclusion that the baseline variant is the most preferable for this airline,” Cauceglia explained. Interjet, the second largest airline in Mexico, operates from Mexico City and Toluca airports to 32 domestic destinations, and also flies to the USA, Cuba, and Costa Rica. Its fleet currently consists of 34 Airbus A320s. Cauceglia does not rule out that Interjet will get the SSJ 100LR version in the future as part of its 10-ship option. According to Mikhail Pogosyan, president of SCAC parent company United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), the first long-range modification (with a range of 5,578 km against the baseline’s 3,048 km) will be delivered to the Russian carrier Gazpromavia in July 2013. SJI was set up in 2007 and is in charge of marketing, sales, customization and deliveries of Superjet 100 aircraft to Europe, the Americas, Oceania, Africa, and Japan; its functions also include crew training and worldwide aftersales support. The company currently employs 260 personnel, 30% of whom are Russian. In November this year the company expects to receive a Thales full-flight



Yakutia is expected to begin operating its first SSJ 100 shortly

simulator for its training center in Venice to support Interjet pilot training from January 2013. At present, cockpit and ground crew training for SSJ 100 customers is being carried out at a facility in Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, which has a range of training equipment, including a Thales Reality 7 FFS. Although SJI is keen to promote SSJ 100 on the European market, these efforts have not been successful so far. Italy’s largest carrier Alitalia preferred not to wait for the aircraft’s EASA certification (completed in February 2012) and instead chose Embraer E175 and E190 aircraft to renew its regional fleet. SJI currently has an MoU with another Italian airline, Blue Panorama. The carrier signed up for 15 SSJ 100s in 2011 but the future of the deal is questionable. SJI president Carmelo Cosentino says the signing of a firm contract has been delayed by Blue Panorama’s attempted merger with Alitalia. The merger eventually failed, but now Blue Panorama is looking for new investors to take a final decision on the SSJ 100 purchase, Cosentino explains.

Corporate version takes shape SJI is also responsible for the development and completion of the SSJ 100 VIP variant. The version was launched in 2011 with the order for two such jets (plus two options) from the Swissbased VIP charter operator Comlux. 4

The Sukhoi Business Jet is expected to be based on the SSJ 100/95LR modification, with additional fuel tanks in the cargo hold, integral stairs, and satcom equipment. According to SCAC, the SBJ will come in three cabin layouts: the eight-passenger VIP version, the 19-passenger government modification, and the 38-seat corporate charter, with 7,880 km, 7,415 km, and 6,450 km range, respectively. The SBJ list price stands at $50 mln; certification is expected in 2014. The VIP version is expected to attract the interest of Russian customers too. According to Pogosyan, Russian government agencies could order about 30-40 airframes. In October 2012 the Russian Cabinet discussed the possibility of placing a consolidated order from various government and paramilitary organizations for domestically manufactured commercial aircraft, including the SSJ 100. This measure is seen as a new method of supporting the country’s aircraft industry, to replace direct subsidies.

Breaking into new regions The SSJ 100 order backlog currently stands at 179 aircraft. SCAC has already delivered 10 examples to Russia’s largest carrier Aeroflot: five in 2011 and another five this year. In October 2012 the manufacturer finally managed to settle a dispute over the terms of SSJ 100 deliveries to the launch operator Armavia (Armenia).


In summer 2012, Armavia threatened to cancel its order for two SSJ 100s and to return the first aircraft, which it had been operating since April 2011. The conflict broke out due to the parties’ failure to reach a compromise on the lease agreement drafted by Russia’s Vneshekonombank. Armavia’s first SSJ 100 (serial no. 96007, tail no. EK 95015) stayed in Russia for several months following a regular check, then was returned to the operator on October 2 after the parties had agreed that it would be leased directly from the manufacturer. According to SCAC, this agreement will be valid for six month, “after which the parties will meet again to continue discussions of the issue.” Negotiations are ongoing on the terms of delivery of Armavia’s second SSJ 100 (serial no. 95021), SCAC says. This airframe was originally slated for delivery on June 22; it is currently kept at the SCAC center in Zhukovsky. In November this year the manufacturer plans to start deliveries to Russia’s Yakutia Airlines, which has two on order. The carrier has already started training four flight crews for the new type. The first Yakutia SSJ 100 has been painted in the carrier livery at the Aviastar plant in Ulyanovsk. In summer 2012 SCAC started outsourcing SSJ 100 completion operations to this UAC-controlled production facility as part of the general effort to increase production rates at its main facility in Komsomolsk-on-Amur. In late 2012 — early 2013 SCAC is expected to deliver the first SSJ 100s to the Indonesian carrier Sky Aviation (12 aircraft on order) and to the Laotian operator Lao Central (three aircraft). The first airframe for Indonesia commenced flight trials in October; deliveries should start as soon as the Indonesian Directorate General of Civil Aviation has validated the SSJ 100 type certificate. The validation process has been reportedly delayed due to the crash of a SSJ 100 during a demonstration flight outside Jakarta in May 2012; the DGCA is now expected to announce its decision within weeks. Laotian approval of the SSJ 100 certificate could follow in December 2012 or January 2013.


Breaking into new market segments The Russian Helicopters holding announces several new programs

Maxim Pyadushkin


ver the past several months, the Russian Helicopters holding has taken several important steps to break into the market segments for light and medium rotorcraft; these niches have remained historically underserved by Russian helicopter manufacturers. The company also identified the initial parameters of a future heavylift aircraft to eventually replace the best-selling Mil Mi-8/17 family. In early September this year, Russian Helicopter landed its first civilian contract for the Kamov Ka-226T light helicopter. The 3,600-kg MTOW version differs from the Ka-226 baseline in the more powerful Turbomeca Arrius 2G1 engines. The Ka-226T was originally developed as Russia’s bid in the Indian defense ministry’s tender for 197 light helicopters. The Russian defense and

emergencies ministries, as well as the Russian Federal Security Service have also been named among potential customers for this model. Although the contract for the 18 Ka226TG helicopters was formally placed by NefteGazAeroCosmos research and production centre, in reality the first commercial examples of the aircraft will be delivered to Gazpromavia, one of the largest rotorcraft operators in Russia. The first six airframes are to be delivered in 2013, with the remaining 12 to follow in 2014. Gazpromavia will use the helicopters for pipeline patrols, repair operations, personnel and corporate transportation in the interest of its parent company – Gazprom gas monopolist. The Ka-226TG version is developed especially for Gazpromavia, to be operated in Far North and arctic shelf areas, in poor visibility and extreme differentials in air temperature. It carries

Russian Helicopters

Gazpromavia became the launch customer for Turbomeca-powered Ka-226T helicopters



the KBO-226TG equipment which allows for operations far away from home base, at night, in fog and heavy precipitation. The aircraft has an extra fuel tank for additional flight range. Russian Helicopters general director Dmitry Petrov says one Gazpromavia-standard helicopter comes with a price tag of over 300 mln rubles ($10 mln). Before the end of 2012 Russian Helicopters expects to begin deliveries of 6.4-ton AgustaWestland AW139 medium helicopters. The aircraft will be assembled at the Russian-Italian joint venture HeliVert in Tomilino, outside Moscow. The first knockdown kits were shipped to Russia in May 2012. AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolinin told Russia & CIS Observer this summer that the first two Russian-assembled AW139s would be delivered before year-end. The partners decline to name the launch customer but there are indications that it


HeliVert is to roll out the first Russian-assembled AW139s by the end of this year

Russian Helicopters

will be either UTair Aviation or the Russian presidential air wing. In 2013 the Tomilino facility is expected to assemble between seven and 10 helicopters, and should reach its annual design capacity of 20 airframes by 2015. These helicopters will be sold in Russia and the CIS. Russian Helicopters and AgustaWestland earlier this year announced their plans to further expand cooperation. The partners signed a framework agreement to jointly design, manufacture, and market a 2.5-ton signle-engine helicopter. Spagnolini told it would be a completely new model that would have nothing to do with the Italian manufacturer’s existing 2.5ton AW119 Koala product. The partners will share the development costs on a parity basis; they promised to announce the rundown of responsibilities at a later date. The new helicopter will be marketed all over the world. Spagnolini declined to speculate on the possible date of the first flight, saying it will take place as soon as feasible. He added that the new helicopter will be manufactured in Russia: “Our joint venture with Russian Helicopters has enough floor space to assemble this model.” Also this summer, Russian Helicopters publicized the results of another phase in the program to develop a highspeed helicopter. In the early days of this effort, the corporation’s Mil and Kamov helicopter design houses were working on individual high-speed concepts, codenamed Mi-X1 and Ka-92 respectively (the latter was to have coaxial main rottor). Both projects had an aft pusher propeller for a sharp increase in airspeed. In June 2012, Russian Helicopters presented a mock-up of the Russian Advanced Commercial Helicopter (RACHEL), which is being developed under the high-speed rotorcraft program. RACHEL is planned as a 10-12ton commercial utility helicopter capable of carrying 21-24 passengers. It is meant as an eventual replacement for the Mi-8/17 family, whose latest modernized version, the Mi-171A2, will

shortly become available. Russian Helicopters expects RACHEL to join the heavier Mi-38 transport in strengthening the corporation’s positions on international markets. The Russian manufacturer has already conducted a market analysis, defined the future model’s technical priorities and specifications, and run a feasibility and risk-assessment study. In

helicopter. Both designs received high marks from the Russian Helicopters jury panel. The Mil design however was found to better reflect the demands of the market, so this design house will now continue work on the RACHEL program. RACHEL, dubbed V-37 by the developers, is a classic helicopter design with one main rotor and one tail rotor. In its

“High efficiency of commercial operations was our main criterion in developing the concept of the new [RACHEL] helicopter” Dmitry Petrov, Russian Helicopters CEO the course of discussions with potential commercial customers the developers arrived at the conclusion that high speed is not currently a key priority frame price. “High efficiency of commercial operations was our main criterion in developing the concept of the new helicopter,” says Petrov. “A joint market study in cooperation with helicopter operators allowed us to define a number of key parameters to be implemented, and to arrive at several conceptual solutions which we believe will fortunately combine innovative technology, environmental friendliness, and high economic efficiency.” Mil and Kamov in 2011 and 2012 ran against each other in a contest for the best conceptual design of a high-speed

baseline configuration it will have a convertible passenger/cargo cabin. The helicopter will have two new turboshaft engines, a new-generation main rotor, and advanced avionics. The V-37’s range and cruise speed are expected to be significantly higher than those of the Mi-8/17 family. The prospective rotorcraft will be able to travel at up to 360 kph, primarily thanks to streamlined main rotor blades and fuselage. Mil plans to build a flying testbed in 2013 to verify technology solutions being proposed for the V-37. The results of these tests should be analyzed by 2014, after which Russian Helicopters expects to select primary suppliers in a tender. Certification of the future helicopter is set for 2018, with deliveries to follow in 2020.




Shift in priorities UAC

Once the largest importer of Russian armament and military aviation equipment, China is growing increasingly picky about its procurement needs

Konstantin Makienko


or the first 15 years, since the collapse of the Soviet Union, China has remained the major buyer of Russian weapons, primarily in the domain of military aviation equipment. The situation is changing however: continuing development of the domestic arms industry has prompted Beijing to become more selective in its choice of Russian-made armament. If this trend continues, China may eventually evolve into one of the world’s largest military aircraft exporters.

The glorious past China used to actively cooperate with Russia on a number of armament programs in the past, including the delivery of 48 Sukhoi Su-27SK/UBK fighters in the 1990s, the license production of up to 105 Su-27SK (locally designated J11) fighters in Shenyang, and also the contracts to deliver 28 Su-27UBK combat trainers, 76 Su-30MKK multirole fighters, and 24 Su-30MK2 carrier-based fighters (these deliveries ran 8

from 2000 to 2004). In all, China purchased and license-built 181 Sukhoi Su-27/30 warplanes. That number does not include the indigenous unlicensed J-11B/BS models, copied from the Su27SK and Su-27UBK respectively, and also the J-16 fighter (copied from the Su-30). This makes China the largest customer for Russian-designed heavy fighters to date, far ahead even of India, which has ordered a total of 248 Su30K/MKI fighters. It was largely through these massive combat aviation acquisitions that China retained its top position in the volume of Russian weapons imports until 2007. The peak was reached in 2000, when the share of deliveries to China amounted to 60% of Russia s total military exports. On average, this figure stood at 40-50%, for the exception of 2004 when the delivery to India of two Talwar-class frigates, 10 Su-30MKI fighters, and the first four Su-30MKI knockdown kits for licence assembly at HAL, boosted India s share in total exports to 43%, whereas the Chinese share for that year dropped to 38%.


Having purchased that much equipment in the late 1990s and the early 2000s, China then focused its efforts on producing unlicensed clones of the Russian Su-27/30 fighters. The country also achieved considerable progress in the indigenous program to design the single-engined J-10 fighter and the export-oriented FC-1/JF-17 light fighter. Following the 2003 contract to supply 24 Su-30MK2s for the Chinese navy, which was completed in 2004, the only other order to come from China was for 38 Ilyushin Il-76/78 military transports and aerial tankers; this deal was never seen through. As a result, ever since 2007 India has remained easily ahead of China as the leading international customer for Russian military hardware. Back in 2007, Indian orders accounted for 30% of the $6 bln worth of Russian arms exports, against just 24% for China. Even more striking was the disparity in the value of the newly placed orders for that year: the Indian contracts accounted for 45% in the total worth of $11 bln in newly placed orders for Russian weaponry, compared with China s meagre 6%.


In other words, the radical change that took place five years ago marked the beginning of China s gradual departure from the top customers of Russian military aviation equipment.

Helicopters and powerplants Between 2007 and 2010, China found itself overtaken in the volume of arms imports from Russia not only by India but also by Venezuela (which, at the peak of its arms purchases in 2011, took up 16% of Moscow s total military exports by volume), and also by Algeria (12%), Vietnam (11-12%), and even Syria (9% as of early 2011). The year 2011 brought signs of a major revival of China s interest in Russian equipment. Beijing’s primary interests currently lie in air-borne munitions, helicopters, and aircraft engines. The latter category has seen the most impressive buying spree: in 2011 alone China signed contracts for the purchase of two powerplant batches, for its J-10 fighters and for the J-11/16 family of aircraft. The contracts were for 123

is planning to build. For example, the purchase of the 290 AL-31Fs indicates that Beijing could assemble at least another 100 J-11B/BS and J-16 airframes; these would require 200 engines plus around 30% spares. Part of the AL-31Fs could also be used for re-engining Beijing s existing fleet of such fighters. Based on a similar formula (one engine per airframe plus 30% spares), the contract for the 123 AL-31FNs suggests China s intention to build up to 100 more single-engine J-10s. In addition, China in 2009 and 2011 purchased two batches of D-30KP-2 engines: first 55 and then another 184. The first 12 powerplants were delivered by the Russian manufacturer NPO Saturn in October 2012. Some 20 to 30 of these might be used to re-engine the oldest examples in China s Ilyushin Il76 fleet, while a further 12 to 16 engines could be involved in testing the new Chinese Y-20 military transport, a rough equivalent of the Russian Il-76 with elements of design adopted from the Boeing C-17 Globemaster. The re-

Russian Helicopters

In August China has ordered in Russia 52 Mil Mi-171E helicopters with the delivery through 2014

Salyut AL-31FN engines, valued at around $500 mln, and for 150 AL-31Fs (up to $700 mln). Another contract, signed in 2012, envisaged the purchase of a further 140 AL-31Fs. In just under two years the Chinese air force effectively bought 413 fighter engines for an estimated total of up to $1.9 bln. The procurement figures allow for a tentative analysis of how many aircraft China 10

maining 200 or so engines will most likely end up powering China’s new cruise missile-capable H-6K bombers, of which 60 to 70 might be built, judging by the number of powerplants on order. Finally, China continues to purchase Russian assault helicopters. Under a $700 mln contract signed in 2012, the Ulan-Ude production plant will build 52 Mil Mi-171E rotorcraft for Beijing.


Uncertain future The future of the Russian-Chinese military aviation cooperation remains extremely uncertain. Theoretically, China could purchase Sukhoi Su-35 landbased and Su-33 carrier-based fighters, a number of Il-76MD-90A military transports, and may continue to buy Russian-designed aero engines and helicopters. However, none of these potential contracts is immune from significant obstacles and risks. The possible Su-35 deal is being stalled by the parties disagreements over the size of the batch to be ordered. Russia is interested in selling at least 48 airframes, possibly more, and would also like Beijing to promise not to clone this most recent fighter design, which will continue in service as the backbone of Russia s tactical fighter aviation until the production launch of the fifth-generation model. Similar problems, exacerbated by the fact that the type is not in series production in Russia, apply to the possibility of selling Su-33 carrier-based fighters to China. In addition, China appears to be implementing its own program to develop the J-15 carrier fighter, which seems to be functionally equivalent to the Su-33. As for possible Il-76MD-90A deliveries, China does indeed require aircraft of this class, but whether or not the contract will be implemented depends on Beijing s progress with the effort to design its own Y-20 military transport. Besides, the price tag of the Russian airframe if built at the Ulyanovsk production plant may prove prohibitively high. In general, Russia s highest hopes with regards to Chinese exports are for continuing sales of aircraft engines to that country, or perhaps even of their individual hi-tech components (such as hot sections), and also for new Mi-17 contracts. Overall, however, the continuing growth of China s industrial, technological and research capabilities might soon promote Beijing from an importer of combat aircraft to a net exporter of first trainers and military transports, and then eventually of strike airplanes.


Second life for Ilyushin heavy lifter Maxim Pyadushkin



he Ilyushin Il-76 transport aircraft program has recently received a new shot in the arm that can significantly prolong the service life of this model, which enjoys steady demand from both civil and military operators in Russia and abroad. On September 22, the first modernized Ilyushin Il-76MD-90A military heavy-lifter, developed under the Il-476 program, made its 40minute maiden flight from the factory strip of Aviastar-SP, the Ulyanovskbased subsidiary of Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC). This prototype (tail number RA-78650) was rolled out on July 5; the center wingbox and outer wing of another prototype are currently undergoing static and endurance tests at TsAGI Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute in Zhukovsky outside Moscow. The start of the Il-76MD-90A flight trials was immediately backed by a launch order from the Russian military. On October 4, the Russian Defense Ministry inked the contract for the purchase of 39 such aircraft; the deal is valued at 140 bln rubles (about $4.5 bln). According to UAC, deliveries should start in 2014 and continue until 2018. Aviastar-SP has already reportedly started to assemble two more Il-76MD90A prototypes to join the flight trials in 2013. The Defense Ministry is likely to expand its order as the current defense procurement plans call for the purchase of about 100 aircraft of this type. The four-engine Il-76MD-90A is a heavily modernized version of the Il76MD baseline which has been operated by the Russian Air Force for more than 20 years and used to be built at the Tashkent, Uzbekistan-based TAPO

Deliveries of the improved Il-76MD-90As to the Russian military should start in 2014

plant. The new modification features an improved wing and reinforced landing gear to accommodate the increased MTOW (210 tons, against the baseline’s 190 tons). Maximum payload has been increased from 48 to 60 tons. The original 12-ton thrust D-30KP2 turbofans have been replaced with the more powerful PS-90A-76 engines each with a thrust of 16 tons. The designers say the new powerplant improves the aircraft’s fuel efficiency from 232 to 187 grams per ton-km and improves its take-off performance. The aircraft’s range with 48 tons of payload has been increased from 3,800 to 5,300 km, and the maximum-payload range is 4,000 km. The Il-76MD-90A’s new Kupol-3 digital avionics suite includes satellite navigation and a glass cockpit. According to the designers, it will allow for reducing the crew headcount from the current five people to three. Although the Il-76MD-90A was developed specifically for the Russian Air Force, the launch of its production in Russia opens up opportunities on the commercial market as well. As of late 2011, 43 Il-76s were in operation with Russian civilian carriers. Russia’s largest cargo operator Volga-Dnepr Airlines currently uses several examples of the Il-76TD-90VD modification for charter freight services. This version is

close in technical parameters to the Il76MD-90A but was built at TAPO, which has since stop production of the type. Earlier, Ilyushin announced that a commercial version of the improved aircraft could be ready by 2015. It will be crucial for potential commercial clients that the modernized freighter comply with the existing and future requirements of ICAO and Eurocontrol and can be operated all over the world. The new phase of the Il-76 program further expands the aircraft’s export opportunities. In 2005, China contracted Russia for the purchase of 34 Il76MDs and four Il-78 aerial tankers. That order was never carried through because the Tashkent facility, which was at that time outside Russia’s control, could not build the aircraft. Now China and Russia could renegotiate the deal. The Il-76 was also used as the platform for the Beriev A-50EI airborne early warning and control aircraft ordered by the Indian Air Force. Three such aircraft, fitted with Israelimade radars were delivered to India in 2009 and 2010. Two examples of the Il76MF freighter, which is a stretched version powered by Aviadvigatel PS90A-76 engines, were handed over to Jordan International Air Cargo company in 2011.




Phazotron-NIIR’s new radars Maxim Pyadushkin


hazotron-NIIR Corporation, Russia s leading radar specialist, is working to create a next-generation radar with an active electronically scanned array (AESA). Its first applications will be on future Russian unmanned aerial vehicles, but Phazotron specialists say the new radar will also find its way onto other aircraft types. Phazotron-NIIR General Designer Yury Guskov told Russia & CIS Observer that the corporation had won a government tender for the development of a radar based on 3D technology earlier in 2012. The 3D technology will help reduce the radar’s size and weight and make it less expensive than Phazotron’s previous AESA radars. “Many aircraft developers complain of AESA technology being prohibitively expensive, so we would like to hope that our 3D-based radar overcomes this price threshold,” Guskov said. In a 3D radar, the transmit/receive modules (TRM) are arranged not on

the usual two-dimensional surface but in several progressively elevated layers. As a result, each TRM is several times more compact and lighter than the usual module, while retaining the standard technical parameters. Module-level reliability also increases. “It will take several years to mature the technology and launch series production, but that period will be shorter than the five years we took to develop the previous TRM. This is the way towards a smart-skin radar,” Guskov notes. According to him, in a month from now Phazotron-NIIR will have to complete the first development phase. The project is being funded by the Russian ministries of education, defense, and industry & trade. A benchtest prototype will be built in 2013, with flight tests to begin in 2014. “We are off to a good start and I cannot see any technology-related problems so far,” Guskov says. Phazotron s new radar will probably debut on the two Russian MALEclass UAV designs currently being de-

Evolution of AESA TR modules developed by Phazotron-NIIR 2012-2013

2011 < 10 gr

2009 80 gr

170 gr



veloped for the Defense Ministry by the companies Transas and Sokol. The former will weigh in at 500 kg; the latter s weight is going to be 5 tons. Guskov says the radar for the Transas UAV will have to have a range of 200 km, against of 20-30 km for the radar to be installed on Sokol s UAV design. He believes both aircraft will require a radar able to produce high-resolution imagery of up to 30-50 cm in the mapping mode, in any weather, day and night. Durable reliability is also of essence for these long-loiter reconnaissance drones. “I am convinced that these two conditions can only be met through the use of an AESA radar,” Guskov stresses. Data acquired by the radar will be partially processed on board the UAV platform and partially transmitted to the ground control station for further processing. Guskov is confident that demand for 3D AESA radars will continue to grow in Russia because further development of this technology is sure to drive the prices down. The next step may become the creation of so-called smart skins, i.e. integration of new-generation TRMs into the platform’s fuselage, he says. Phazotron-NIIR in its time pioneered Russian AESA research by creating the Zhuk-AE radar for the Mikoyan MiG-35 bid in the Indian Air Force MMRCA tender. The prototype successfully completed around 1,000 hours of flight tests. “There were no hardware malfunctions,” Guskov recalls. The company is currently working on the full-scale-AESA Zhuk-A version for Russian Air Force MiG-35s. “We already have around 70% of what we need and are now looking for a manufacturer that would build [the radar] at a reasonable cost,” Guskov says.


Antonov An-70 transport resumes flight trials


Imroved An-70 prototype takes off near Kiev


he Ukrainian aircraft maker Antonov has resumed flight trials of its An-70 medium military transport aircraft. The first three test flights were performed on September 27-30 outside Kiev, and involved the only existing prototype (tail no. UR-NTK) with improved powerplants and avionics. The An-70 program was launched in the 1980s. It can carry 47 tons of payload to 3,000 km and has a cruise speed of 700-750 kph. This transport aircraft is powered by four D-27 engines with SV-27 counter-rotating propfans. The counter-rotating propeller design produces additional airflow, thus increasing wing lift for better short take-off and landing performance. According to the designers, An-70 can operate from 600 to 700-m unpaved runways with 20 tons of payload. The development program was hampered by the collapse of the Soviet Union, a protracted lack of funding, and technical problems. The An-70 performed its maiden flight in Kiev in 1994. One of the prototypes was lost in a crash in 1995, another sustained serious damage in an incident in 2001 but was later restored. The program is now being financed jointly by Russia and Ukraine, since the aircraft is being developed in the interest of both countries’ air forces. According to Antonov, the latest improvements include the installation of low-noise propfans, a new engine and propfan control system, and an upgraded APU. Almost all components of the avionics suite, including the displays, have been modernized to meet the requirements of the Russian Air Force, which plans to purchase up to 60 such transports through to 2020. The Ukrainian military could reportedly buy up to 10 of the type through to 2017.

The program of preliminary trials, approved by the defense ministries of Russia and Ukraine, involves 20 flights. It will be followed by the final stage of joint evaluation tests, which will involve 75 more flights. Antonov representatives told Russia & CIS Observer that the Russian military is in talks over the


possible purchase of two An-70s currently being built by Antonov for the Ukrainian Air Force. Earlier this year the Russian government announced its plan to open an An-70 assembly line in Russia, at the Kazan-based KAPO aviation plant, a subsidiary of United Aircraft Corporation.



航天业的供货商 RUSSIA/CIS OBSERVER № 2 (35) NOVEMBER 2012



The first Su-30SM prototype landing after its maiden flight


in turn, was derived in the late 1990s from the heavily upgraded Su-30 twoseater under the Indian Air Force requirement. This 34-ton MTOW aircraft is powered by a pair of AL-31FP bypass turbojets, which accelerate it to Mach 2 in horizontal flight. The Su-30MKI carries a combat load of up to 8,000 kg on 12 hardpoints to engage airborne, ground and sea-surface targets. India has already ordered 230 of the type, both in form of direct purchases

rkut Corporation, a subsidiary of Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation, has started flight-testing the twinseat Sukhoi Su-30SM multirole fighter. The first aircraft completed its two-hour maiden flight on September 21; the second prototype joined the flight tests on September 25, the manufacturer reports. The Su-30SM, under development for the Russian Air Force, is based on Irkut’s best-selling export platform the Su-30MKI. The baseline platform,

Irkut Corp.

Su-30SM flight trials begin and through local license production at Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. IAF is expected to sign up for a further 42 Su30MKIs by the end of this year. India is not the sole foreign customer for the type: 44 airframes in the Su30MKA version have been delivered to Algeria, while Malaysia has received 18 fighters in the Su-30MKM modification. To date Irkut has exported in excess of 190 Su-30 fighters in different variants. According to Irkut, the Su-30SM meets the specific requirements of the Russian Air Force, including a new radar, communications and IFF equipment and also new ejection seats. The aircraft can also carry new types of weapons. In March 2012 the Russian Defense Ministry placed an order for 30 Su-30SM fighters, with deliveries to continue through to 2015. The first two airframes are expected to be handed over at the end of this year.

Russia, India launch MTA preliminary design



signed in order to complete the design and development phase. The 15- to 20-ton-class MTA design is being developed to meet the requirements of the Russian and Indian military, as well as for marketing to other countries. According to HAL, the MTA will be designed for cargo and troop transportation, as well as for operations involving paradropping and airdropping of supplies, including with The launch customers for future MTA aircraft will be the air forces of Russia and India


ussia and India have taken a significant step towards joint development of the long-awaited Multirole Transport Aircraft (MTA). On October 12, the parties involved in this project — the Transport Aircraft subsidiary of Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC-TA) and India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) — signed the Preliminary Design Phase (PDP) contract with the Russo-Indian joint venture Multirole Transport Aircraft Ltd (MTAL), which acts as the program customer. The signing of the PDP Contract, which followed the signing of the general contract May 2012, paves way for an immediate start of preliminary design work on the MTA, to be carried out by a joint team of HAL and UACTA specialists in Moscow. This phase will take 10 months, after which a Detail Design Phase contract is to be


the use of a low-altitude parachute extraction system. The Russian Air Force is expected to order 100 aircraft of this type, while the IAF is to purchase 45. The designers estimate the total demand for the MTA to amount to 205 airframes. Manufacture of the MTA prototypes and subsequent series production are to take place at HAL Transport Aircraft Division in Kanpur.


Regional conundrum Russian local and regional operators are in dire need of new equipment but there are no easy ways to renew obsolete fleets

Single-engine aircraft


One realistic — though admittedly not the cheapest — solution to Russia’s thirst for single-engine aircraft seating up to 10 passengers would be the nineseat Cessna 208B Grand Caravan tur-

he economy of regional airline services is much more intricate than the principles applied to mainline air transport. Among the key problems in this sector are the low purchasing power of the population and the high specific costs associated to the smaller seating capacity of regional aircraft and the relatively short route legs they are operated on. This is why, whenever the mainline segment in Russia enters periods of stagnation, the regional air services market begins to shrink; similarly, the recent explosive growth of mainline airline transport has been accompanies by very insignificant improvements on the regional market. Another problem is that an effective method of interaction between the network and feeder carriers was never really introduced in Russia. The majority of regional and local carriers are therefore unable to accumulate enough capital to purchase new equipment, so continue to operate Sovietmade aircraft. As a result, these airframes are fast approaching the end of their service life, and regional carriers lack not just money for fleet renovation purposes but even reliable business models that could attract external funding. This unfortunate state of affairs prompts market players to seek inexpensive solutions to the problem of ageing regional fleets. The range of options for airliners seating over 50 passengers is more or less obvious; as for smaller aircraft, a great many projects of varying feasibility are being proposed.

Leonid Faerberg /

Alexei Sinitsky

3T is not getting much demand, probably due to its hefty price tag ($1.5 to $2 million). SibNIA Siberian Aeronautical Research Institute has come up with an alternative solution, dubbed An-2MS, which implies re-

Russia’s An-2 fleet currently stands at about 1,500 airframes, but only some 300 of these are actually being used

boprop. The type is already operated in this country by the Siberian carriers AeroGeo and Tomsk Avia. There are however many alternative proposals out there. The idea of re-engining the veteran Antonov An-2 biplane has recently been making rounds in the Russian aviation community. The primary argument being voiced by proponents of this solution is that the aircraft’s original ASh-62I piston engine runs on gasoline, a type of fuel that is expensive and not always readily available in Russia. In fact, a re-engined version of the An-2 already exists: some 30 aircraft have been upgraded to the An-3T standard through the installation of the TVD-20 turboprop powerplant. It appears however that the An-

placing the original engine with an overhauled Garrett TPE-331 turboprop at $800,000. It is as yet difficult to say whether this latter variant will be popular with regional operators. Besides, it is unclear how many An-2s still in operation can actually be re-engined. The total Russian An-2 fleet currently stands at about 1,500 airframes, but only some 300 of these are actually being used. The An-2 OEM, the Ukrainian company Antonov, has its own An-2 re-engining offer dubbed An-2-100. This modification is powered by the Motor Sich MS-14 turboprop engine and also includes minimal upgradation of the avionics suite. Antonov aims to have the re-engined version certified by early 2013; the cost of upgrading one An-2




to the -100 standard is estimated at $900,000. Certification of a re-engined An-2, regardless of the variant, may pose a problem in itself. Under the current Russian regulations, a single-engine commercial aircraft cannot carry more than nine passengers. The original An2 design seats 12. The prospect of giving up 25% of the airplane’s passenger capacity will hardly enjoy popularity with potential customers. Besides, it is not entirely clear whether the original An2 design itself can meet the rigorous contemporary certification requirements. Despite the abundance of re-engining choices, one thing is clear: a refurbished An-2 is unlikely to sell in any significant numbers without government support. This is why all projects mentioned above are targeting budget funding. Work continues on further improvements to the single-engine Myasishchev M-101T Gzhel aircraft. Russia’s Dexter air-taxi service briefly

plans include the development of the eight-seat M-103 passenger/cargo version, the M-107 trainer, and the M201GP twin-engine aircraft seating up to 16 passengers in a pressurized cabin. This latter design will have a MTOW range of 2,166 km and a cruise speed of 510 kph. Again, this is not the only multi-engine project currently being offered to Russian local and regional operators.

Multi-engine designs Perhaps the only realistic option for Russian carriers looking to get new aircraft seating up to 20 passengers is the 19-seat L-410 UVP-E20 modification of the once-ubiquitous Czech-made Let L-410 Turbolet twin-engined STOL airplane. If bought in Russia the aircraft will be priced at 150-160 million rubles (upwards of $5 million), but this sum includes reimbursable VAT. The Czech manufacturer Airсraft Industries (which is controlled by Russian Ural Mining and Metallurgy Company) says 17 UVP-E20s were sold The Czech manufacturer Airсraft Industries delivered 5 L-410 UVP-E20 turboprops to Russia in 2012

operated several examples but eventually switched over to the Pilatus PC-12. Now Myasishchev and Nizhny Novgorod-based Sokol production plant are developing an upgraded version, the M-101TM, to be powered by the General Electric H80 engine. The modification will have wingtip fuel tanks and a number of other improvements. Myasishchev’s longer-term 16

in Russia and the CIS between 2009 and 2011, and another 11 were delivered to customers in other countries. Five aircraft have been delivered in 2012, all of them to Russia, and there are orders for nine more. From 2013 onwards all new UVP-E20s will be fitted with the more powerful and fuel-efficient General Electric Н80 engines, hiking the aircraft s price by 7-10%.


The project to develop in Russia the twin-engined Progress 10-seat, Rysachok turboprop seems to have fallen through. Originally designed as a multi-engine training aircraft for flying schools, the Rysachok s specification underwent several revisions during the development process. At MAKS 2011 air show the aircraft was being promoted as a potential replacement for the An-2, but its future however is uncertain. The development program has been marred by several legal battles; in May 2012 the Samara-based TsSKB Progress manufacturer won a lawsuit worth some $5 million against the Rysachok developer, the Moscowbased company Technoavia. Two flying examples have been built to date, and one airframe remains partially assembled. Attempts are being made to launch several aircraft production projects within the Ulyanovsk special port economic zone. These include possible resumption of de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter production, local assembly of the new French SK-105 Skylander design, and the Czech Evektor EV-55 Outback project. AeroGeo in late September 2012 signed an MOU with Evektor for the purchase of 29 Outbacks (nine orders and 20 options). A technology transfer agreement was also signed at the time as part of the Vektor NG RUS joint venture, whose General Director Aleksandr Berezin says talks are in progress with the Ulyanovsk zone authorities on possible launch of local Outback production from 2014, by which time the type is expected to obtain a Russian certificate. The fundamental problem of the Russian regional airline market is that it differs from similar markets in the rest of the world, where small-sized aircraft are primarily purchased by GA operators and not by commercial carriers. Such airplanes are usually produced in large numbers, which drives the prices down. In Russia, GA is barely surviving and private pilots are simply unable to produce any sort of solvent demand for small aircraft types.


Shifting trend Polina Zvereva


Sergey Sergeev

ussian airlines carried 17% more passengers in the first six months of 2012 than they had over the same period in 2011; the total number of passengers carried this year is expected to top 70 million people, for the first time in Russia’s recent history. The top five airlines in passengers carried have not changed from one year ago but their order in the rating got somewhat rearranged (see the table at p. 20). The combined share of these five largest market players in the total number of passengers carried continues to grow, but the rating of leaders in international passenger services is significantly different from the overall results across the industry — a reflection the growing presence of individual airlines on international routes originating in Russian airports outside Moscow. The increasing role of international charter services is also playing a role here. The only change in the top five of Russia’s largest airlines from last year is that UTair Aviation has beat S7 Airlines to third place in total passengers carried. Although UTair lost to Aeroflot and Transaero both in passengers carried and in passenger kilometres, its results proved higher than the combined figures for S7 and Globus (another S7

Group carrier, which also operates under the S7 Airlines brand). Aeroflot’s leading position remains unreachable even for the closest rival Transaero. The ranking of airlines in terms of passengers carried on international routes differs from the overall leaders list. It has also changed year-on-year, with Ural Airlines ousting OrenAir from its third place after the steady performers Aeroflot and Transaero. S7 Airlines came fourth, an improvement from its sixths position one year ago. UTair also saw its standing improved from eighth to fifth place. UTair, S7 and Ural Airlines are predominantly scheduled network airlines; charter operations form a minor portion of their business. The current growth in international passenger numbers can be explained, among other factors, by the intensified airline activity on scheduled routes to destinations in CIS countries and farther abroad. Such flights often originate in Russian regional centers outside Moscow. For example, Urals Airlines in 2012 launched scheduled services between Yekaterinburg and Harbin, between Nizhny Novgorod and Prague, between Irkutsk and Guangzhou, and between Moscow and Cologne. Last winter the carrier introduced flights from Chelyabinsk to Vienna, Harbin and Dubai (its winter schedule listed flights to Dubai from nine Russian

Partnerships with TUI allowed Russian charter operator Kolavia to increase quickly the number of passengers carried



cities), and also expanded its offer of flights to China. S7 Airlines increased its frequencies from Novosibirsk to Frankfurt and Prague, and also from Moscow to Chisinau. The carrier this summer resumed services to Hannover, Burgas, Varna, and Simferopol, and additionally opened new routes from Moscow to Pula and Odessa. Unlike S7 Airlines, which is gradually reducing the number of charter flights in its operations, UTair has only recently entered the tourist charter market. Since 2010 the airline has been operating Boeing 757-200s and several other aircraft types in the interests of a tour operator, thus expanding its route network. UTair is also active in the international scheduled services segment, particularly with regard to the CIS routes, many of which have seen a faster growth in passenger numbers than services to destinations farther away from Russia. Although Russia’s charter operators have somewhat lost their market positions due to the growing presence of the largest network airlines in the international segment, they are still to be reckoned with. Nordwind Airlines and OrenАir are sixth and seventh, respectively, in the ranking of the leading Russian carriers on international routes. Kolavia, which entered a partnership deal with TUI earlier this year, has risen from 19th to 10th place on the list.


Russian Researchers Expect a Leap in Short-haul Efficiency Russian researchers continue to push forward a proposed medium-haul, widebody aircraft design which has been under development since 2010 in the framework of an expanding joint program involving a number of Russian and international research and consultancy organizations, including the Central Aerohydrodynamics Institute, the International Air Transport Association, the MATs Inter-Sector Analytical Cente), Infomost Consulting, and SH&E/ACF. Widely known as Frigate Ecojet, the project was launched in the form of a self-funded initiative by the private diversified aviation group Rosaviaconsortium, whose activities include the development of civil aircraft in Russia. Over the last 15 years the Rosaviaconsortium team of aircraft engineers has been behind several development programs, including the cargo version of the Tupolev Tu-204 jetliner (several Tu-204C examples have been successfully operated by TNT in Europe) and also the Tu-204-300, a shrink version of the same baseline. Frigate Ecojet is based on a fundamentally new, innovative aerodynamic and structural design. Work on the aircraft is being undertaken in conjunction with the Russian center for aviation science at the Central Aerohydrodynamics Institute. It stands to become a major platform for advanced design technology and innovation in the Russian aviation industry. The main objective of the program is the development of the Frigate Ecojet next-generation wide-

body short- and medium-haul aircraft that would be competitive on the international civil aviation market through the application of conceptually new aerodynamic and structural design. A study of the overall trends in aircraft development and the most advanced Western aircraft design reveals that the conventional aircraft body design has reached the maximum level of aerodynamic refinement, and that future perfection of design stands to benefit most from exploiting the application of new aerodynamic schemes. The completely new design approach of the IS-1 aircraft represents an engineering breakthrough potentially satisfying the needs of next-generation aerodynamics and serving as a prototype for future development in this area. The result of the conceptual design phase demonstrated the feasibility of a new widebody aircraft for short- and medium-haul routes with low technical risks. The aircraft demonstrates a high level of safety and comfort, as well as a high degree of competitiveness. Concurrent with the aircraft development process using an integral aerodynamic scheme, engineers have obtained a wealth of experience and taken out more than 50 patents. Frigate Ecojet is expected to enter series production in 2019-2020. Its operational performance is expected to exceed that of the most advanced civil aircraft of 2010 by 15-20%. The main characteristic of the twin-engine aircraft is an elliptical fuselage which would accommodate 300-350 passengers in a

three-class, triple-aisle configuration. Contemporary studies of the global air transport market have revealed a segment with a flight range of 3,000 to 4,000 km in which the operation of widebody aircraft is very effective. Over 56% of all global flights of widebody long-haul aircraft is actually for less than 3,000 km. In some regions of the world this percentage is much higher. Analysis of the Russian air transportation system provides firm data substantiating a flight range bracket between 500 and 3,500 km as the core for a potential target market segment. Consequently, a key market requirement for the range vs. maximum payload criterion could be set at 3,500 km. Another key market requirement is a single-class capacity of 295 to 300 seats. Analysis of airline route networks has demonstrated that the Ecojet’s 302-seat version operating at ranges of up to 3,500 km will exceed the economic efficiency parameters of all sameclass aircraft currently in operation on these routes by 25%. During flights with 352 passengers to a range of 2,500 km, the economic efficiency gain would reach 30%. Currently the Frigate Ecojet team is gathering an impressive consortium of international consultants including Ernst &Young, ICF SH&E and Infomost Consulting, as well as Russia’s MATs to study scenarios of future development of the project - either as a standalone effort or a part of certain national, e.g. UAC’s potential wide body program, or international venture.


Top 20 Russian airlines, by passenger carried and passenger kilometers flown in the first half of 2012 Passenger kilometer Passenger km, thousand

Passenger carried


Ranking in 1H 2012 (1H 2011)

Aeroflot – Russian Airlines Transaero UTair S7 Airlines Ural Airlines NordWind OrenAir Rossiya Airlines Globus Vladivostok Air Yakutia Airlines VIM-Avia NordStar I Fly Kuban Red Wings Donavia Yamal Kolavia Nordavia

1 (1) 2 (2) 3 (4) 4 (3) 5 (8) 6 (5) 7 (6) 8 (7) 9 (12) 10 (9) 11 (11) 12 (10) 13 (16) 14 (19) 15 (18) 16 (14) 17 (20) 18 (25) 19 (24) 20 (13)

International and domestic routes 22,619.0 +19.98 18,053.4 +26.04 6,849.6 +57.29 5,644.9 +21.47 4,079.6 +55.24 * * 3,880.6 +27.68 3,773.8 +29.06 1,898.2 +48.68 1,610.9 -20.85 1,424.3 +11.17 1,395.1 -13.01 * * * * 735.0 +26.01 693.9 -27.51 685.2 +49.08 647.3 +76.80 602.1 +64.13 519.4 -49.82

Aeroflot – Russian Airlines Transaero NordWind OrenAir Ural Airlines UTair Rossiya Airlines S7 Airlines VIM-Avia I Fly Red Wings Kolavia NordStar Kuban Bashkortostan Moskovia Airlines Tatarstan Vladivostok Air Yakutia Airlines Donavia

1 (1) 2 (2) 3 (3) 4 (4) 5 (7) 6 (8) 7 (5) 8 (6) 9 (9) 10 (11) 11 (10) 12 (16) 13 (14) 14 (23) 15 (21) 16 (13) 17 (15) 18 (19) 19 (17) 20 (18)

15,564.3 14,596.8 * 3,226.1 2,907.4 2,672.3 2,409.8 2,313.1 939.1 * 624.7 602.1 * 401.5 * 325.1 309.4 292.7 209.1 204.6

Aeroflot – Russian Airlines UTair Transaero S7 Airlines Globus Rossiya Airlines Vladivostok Air Yakutia Airlines Ural Airlines NordStar OrenAir Yamal Nordavia Donavia VIM-Avia Kuban Gazpromavia Alrosa RusLine Ak Bars Aero

1 (1) 2 (2) 3 (4) 4 (3) 5 (6) 6 (8) 7 (5) 8 (9) 9 (7) 10 (16) 11 (20) 12 (18) 13 (10) 14 (22) 15 (15) 16 (12) 17 (19) 18 (21) 19 (24) 20 (28)

7,054.7 4,177.4 3,456.7 3,331.8 1,699.9 1,364.0 1,318.2 1,215.2 1,172.2 * 654.5 573.7 492.9 480.6 456.0 333.5 318.2 270.7 * 164.1

Note: * No official data available at the moment of the issue's release.

Source: Russian Transport Clearing House.



Change to 1H 2011, %

Ranking in 1H 2012 (1H 2011)

Passengers, thousand

Change to 1H 2011, %

1 (1) 2 (2) 3 (3) 4 (4) 6 (7) 8 (8) 7 (6) 5 (5) 9 (13) 11 (14) 14 (16) 10 (10) 12 (20) 19 (26) 15 (15) 18 (17) 13 (19) 17 (23) 20 (31) 16 (9)

7,938.4 4,345.1 3,570.8 2,716.1 1,500.0 * 1,163.4 1,857.7 832.6 539.5 460.9 604.8 * * 439.4 252.6 466.2 359.8 237.2 402.3

+27.22 +26.15 +53.44 +20.96 +50.59 * +14.28 +25.10 +56.07 +1.44 +15.15 -4.74 * * +8.37 -28.39 +49.47 +62.08 +83.68 -43.92

International routes +17.59 +27.48 * +16.15 +88.50 +104.89 +27.83 +43.73 -20.28 * -30.13 +110.61 * +217.15 * -0.51 +1.73 +21.70 -25.29 -19.11

1 (1) 2 (2) 6 (4) 7 (3) 3 (7) 5 (8) 8 (5) 4 (6) 9 (9) 11 (11) 12 (10) 10 (19) 14 (18) 13 (20) 15 (23) 17 (15) 19 (16) 16 (14) 20 (17) 18 (12)

4,731.3 3,326.8 * 934.9 1,018.0 967.1 912.4 980.8 362.9 * 227.6 237.2 * 196.2 * 121.8 113.3 130.7 87.1 117.0

+19.82 +21.69 * +9.74 +87.80 +95.72 +24.53 +45.48 -12.07 * -32.34 +151.60 * +128.95 * -1.95 -0.99 +2.72 -20.78 -16.98

Domestic routes +25.61 +36.94 +20.31 +9.67 +54.37 +31.29 -26.55 +21.36 +7.98 * +150.02 +89.70 -45.56 +132.52 +7.09 -26.97 +9.21 +19.23 * +49.85

1 (1) 2 (2) 4 (5) 3 (3) 6 (8) 5 (4) 8 (11) 10 (14) 7 (9) 12 (21) 16 (19) 13 (17) 9 (6) 11 (18) 15 (15) 14 (13) 17 (20) 22 (29) 19 (22) 20 (28)

3,207.1 2,603.7 1,018.4 1,735.3 755.3 945.2 408.9 373.8 482.0 * 228.5 327.7 387.5 349.2 242.0 243.2 167.9 117.8 * 137.7

+39.98 +42.05 +43.31 +10.44 +65.37 +25.65 +1.04 +28.76 +6.16 * +37.59 +69.94 -41.09 +104.27 +8.85 -23.95 +1.79 +17.50 * +28.17


Russian bizav fleet set to grow further The Russian business aviation market has considerable potential for growth


he number of business aviation movements in Russia has grown more than threefold over the past seven years, from 50,000 in 2005 to the expected 160,000 for all of 2012. These figures were quoted by Valery Ochirov, President of the Russian United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA), at the opening of the JetExpo 2012 exhibition in Moscow this September. Foreign bizav manufacturers also note the continuing development of the Russian market. According to the latest Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC) research, Russia features in four of the top 10 country pairs for the highest 2011 growth rate in business flights across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Flights between Russia and Latvia top the list with 475% growth last year, followed by bizav operations between Russia and the Middle East (up 122.2%). Business flights between Russia and the UK grew by 14% in 2011, coming seventh in the HBC rating and followed by Russia-Switzerland operations (up 13.3%). “Russia undoubtedly remains one of the fastest growing and most interesting markets,” says Sean McGeough, HBC president, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific. “Its recent accession of the WTO will contribute to the liberalization of Russia’s trade relations with other countries, stimulating its economy and potentially prompting further growth in demand for business aviation services.” The Russian bizav fleet has been growing steadily in the past few years.

The HBC study says 82 business aircraft were delivered to this country from 2007 to 2011, or 110% more than in 2002-06. Market forecasts are also optimistic: according to the JetExpo organizers, 525 business jets will be brought into Russia and the CIS by the year 2020, to be followed by a further 1,016 between 2021 and 2030. This will bring the total regional bizav fleet up to 1,700 units by the year 2030; by that time, the global business aviation fleet will have reached 30,000 aircraft. At present, according to the JetExpo study, there are 158 business aircraft registered in Russia. The overall number of Russian-owned airframes exceeds 400, meaning that about two-

needs. Only 17% are operated in the interests of private owners. Corporations prefer high-capacity aircraft such as the Dassault Falcon 900 and the Gulfstream 450/550; these are typically operated to a fixed schedule on a number of pre-defined routes to meet the business travel needs of the top management. Businesspeople choose smaller models, such as the Cessna Citation, which present a more affordable charter option, whereas private owners go for the Embraer Legacy 600, to be used in personal travel. Business charter services have recently been growing in popularity in Russia, the JetExpo study indicates. Although a charter is 40-45% typically The number of business aviation flights in Russia has grown more than threefold over the past seven years

Sergey Sergeev

Polina Zvereva, Ekaterina Sorokovaya

thirds of Russian owners prefer to have their aircraft registered abroad. There are several reasons for this, including financial considerations such as high customs duty, expensive insurance, etc., and also owners reluctance to own up to their ownership of a business jet. A total of 83% of Russian-registered business jets are owned by business and charter operators, or by large businesses that purchase aircraft for corporate

more expensive than a first-class airline ticket, the cost of flying a group of six to eight people on a short-distance route (for example, between Moscow and St. Petersburg) proves to be cheaper than buying them first- or even business-class seats on a scheduled carrier. Charter flights are priced per flight hour, are independent of airline timetables, and can operate non-stop to the desired destination, the JetExpo study points out.




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The new face of the Russian space program Igor Afanasyev, Dmitry Vorontsov


The ExoMars rover is to be delivered to Mars by Russian Proton-M launch vehicle

number of Russian satellites in orbit is planned to have grown by over 100%, reaching 188 from the current 71. The comsat constellation should reach 53 units by the year 2020, and 77 to 2030. The number of Earth remote sensing satellites is to grow to 27 by 2020, and to 34 by 2030; that of navigation satellites to 30 and 36, respectively. The Glonass global positioning system is to become equal to GPS in accuracy and other parameters. “In the next 20 years we must make headway in such new technologies as millimeter radio waves and beam antennas,” Popovkin noted. The Russian space program reached an important milestone on July 22, 2012 with the launch of the Canopus-B and BKA Earth remote sensing satellites in the interests of Russia and Belarus. Russia is planning to orbit its new, high-performance Resurs-P satellite on November 30 this year. This


he plans to revise the Russian space program, first announced in late 2011, have been further refined this year all because of another in a recent row of launch failures. On August 6, two communications satellites (Express-MD2 and Telkom-3) found themselves stranded in low orbit due to a malfunction of the Proton-M launch vehicle’s Briz-M third stage. The incident proved the last straw for the country’s leadership, which then demanded an overhaul of the Russian space program. In August and September this year, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev held special government sessions to tackle the systemic crisis in the space industry. The measures outlined by the government include retooling; increased productivity; and ensuring Russia’s global competitiveness on the space services market. One of the crucial issues requiring immediate attention is the selection of the right technical strategy for further development of the industry. In the autumn of 2011, Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) head Vladimir Popovkin named the following space program priorities: applied programs, scientific research, manned space exploration, and the development of new launch vehicles. The same set of objectives was included in the draft strategy to develop Russia’s space activity through to 2030 and beyond (Strategy 2030), which was submitted to the government in March 2012. In keeping with these priorities, the first objective is to ensure an increase in the quality and size of the national satellite constellation. By the year 2030, the

spacecraft is on a par with foreign equivalents in terms of accuracy, productivity and spatial resolution, and only yields to them in size and weight. In late 2012 or early 2013, Russia should launch a new-generation Persona military satellite. A Kondor-E radar satellite is to be launched before year-end. The civilian and military remotesensing spacecraft to be launched in 2013 include Meteor-M, Baumanets-2, totos-S1, Bars, Kobalt-M, Musson-2, and Canopus-ST. In 2014, these will be joined in orbit by Meteor-M, ElektroL, Kobalt-M, and Canopus-B. The 2015 launch plan includes Meteor-M, Elektro-L, Musson-2, and Elektro-VO. Another Meteor-M and a further Elektro-VO will be launched in 2016, to be followed by Elektro-M in 2017. The number of scientific satellites in orbit is to increase significantly. This process started with the launching of




with the placing of an automatic station in the Moon’s orbit. The year 2017 will see the beginning of the Luna-Resurs project in the form of a Russian-Indian automatic mission to land a probe on the Moon’s south pole. Phase two of the same experiment envisages the return of lunar soil samples to Earth in 2019. Russia will participate in the European Space Agency’s ExoMars mission to search for possible biosignatures of Martian life. The program will involve a Mars orbiter, an entry, descent, and landing demonstrator module (EDM), and a Martian rover, and is aimed at investigating the planet’s subsurface and search for traces of life. In the first phase of the program, to start in 2016, the orbiter and EDM will be launched towards Mars. Russia’s participation in this phase will be restricted to the provision of a Proton-M launch vehicle and ground communications stations. The second

The European probe to be sent to Mercury in 2015 under the BepiColombo project will have Russian instruments aboard

visages the launching in 2014 and 2015 of two pairs of satellites, each to monitor one flux tube in the terrestrial magnetosphere. Scientific missions are not restricted to near-Earth space. Russia continues to plot unmanned interplanetary missions to the Moon and planets of the Solar system, as well as to outer regions of the space. In 2015, in the framework of the LunaGlob exploration program, a probe is to land on the Moon to search for water ice. The project will continue through 2016 24

phase, to begin in 2018, will see the mainly Russian-built rover sent to Mars. In 2020, Russia will launch the Venera-D probe towards Venus. The probe will include an orbiter, a lander, and one or two atmospheric balloons. In 2021, in the framework of the project to reduce the comet and asteroid threat to the Earth, the Apophis probe may be sent towards the nearEarth asteroid of the same name to confirm its orbit and study its surface. In 2022, the Laplace-P mission (also known as the Europa Lander mission)



the Zond-PP spacecraft launched along with the Canopus-V and BKA satellites. Developed by Lavochkin NPO from the new non-pressurized Karat platform, it is intended to study the Earth surface. Similar spacecraft to be launched shortly include the Relec satellite for the investigation of relativistic electron events and transient atmospheric processes. The Strannik satellite will conduct plasma research; the Arka orbital solar observatory will conduct precision observations of the Solar corona. All these spacecraft are to be orbited by 2015. VNIIEM Corporation and Moscow State University have used the Canopus-B platform to develop their Lomonosov satellite, to be launched in the spring of 2013 for the study of ultra-high-energy cosmic rays. The Resonance project that involves the study of the near-Earth space, en-

will send a spacecraft towards Jupiter to study the giant planet’s satellites and land on one of them. The project is expected to be implemented jointly with the ESA. Around 2030, Russia is planning to send an automatic station to Mercury. Earlier plans call for a joint Mercurian mission with ESA as part of the BepiColombo project, to launch in 2015 with Russian instruments installed on the European probe. The study of the interactions between the Sun and the Earth, first started in Russia back in the Soviet times, will be continued in the framework of the Interhelio-Zond project, a part of NASA’s Living with a Star international program. The Interhelio-Zond observatory is set to be launched in 2017. In 2020, Russia will train the instruments of its Polar-Ecliptic Patrol probes on the Sun. Two spacecraft will be inserted into inclined heliocentric orbit with a radius of about 0.5 A.U. in order to continuously monitor the Sun-Earth line, conduct regular observations of the Sun within and outside the ecliptic plane, and study the Sun’s polar regions. The plans related to Russia’s manned spaceflight have to do primarily with further operation of the ISS, and also with the development of the Prospective Piloted Transport System project. The spacecraft is still under development, its future largely depending on future budget subsidies. It is not clear where Russian cosmonauts are going to take the new system, either. The Strategy 2030 envisages missions towards the Moon with possible landings on Lunar surface, but no specific decisions have yet been made. Furthermore, most experts believe that no nation, however technically advanced, can possibly venture a large-scaled manned Moon exploration effort single-handedly. An international Lunar project, on the other hand, would require protracted negotiations between all the parties involved. So far it is known that NASA and Roscosmos are in talks over the possibility of setting up a habitable space station in the L2 Lagrangian point over the Moon’s far side.

Russia CIS Observer November 2012  

Latest informetion on Russia's and CIS air transport, aerospace industry, business aviation, defense and space business.

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