THE UNIQUE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE AN124100 Dennis Gliznoutsa Vice President of Ruslan International Ltd Ruslan International Ltd is a joint venture company, formed in 2006 by Antonov Airlines and Volga-Dnepr Airlines to market their combined fleets of 19 An-124-100 freighter aircraft. The An-124-100 is the world’s largest series-produced transport aircraft. It has a massive capacity and a range of unique features that make it perfect for the transportation of outsize and heavyweight air cargo. However, what makes this aircraft particularly special, according to Dennis Gliznoutsa, Ruslan International’s Vice President, is that it carries its own loading and unloading equipment on board, along with an ability to ‘kneel down’ the nose of the aircraft to make the cargo hold accessible to a wide range of cargoes. “It has its own on-board cranes and winches for loading,” says Gliznoutsa. “These can be especially important when operating in airports and airfields without on-site handling systems.” In addition, the aircraft was designed to fly to remote, unpaved airfields, and over the years it has successfully deployed to over 1,200 airports in more than 190 countries. According to Gliznoutsa, the An-124-100 is incredibly versatile. It can carry an impressive range of cargoes from satellites, rocket sections, fuselages, wings and aero engines to all manner of heavy-wheeled vehicles. “It regularly delivers urgent and strategic shipments for customers in the oil and gas (O&G) and energy and power (E&P) industries, as well as many other sectors.” Gliznoutsa reveals the utility of such a capability, saying, “Whereas big, heavy cargoes used to spend weeks travelling by road and sea, the An-124 is able to
The Antonov An-124-100 in ‘kneel down’ position
deliver them within a matter of hours anywhere in the world. This is especially important when we are asked, for example, to deliver an urgent piece of O&G equipment to enable a customer to resume operations and save millions of dollars a day in lost production.” However, Ruslan International is not merely an emergency service. “The diverse nature of our business means that some flights have to operate at very short notice while others, supporting big infrastructure projects, can be years in the planning before involving very intensive flight programmes.”
MILITARY EXPERIENCE Ruslan International does not just support commercial operations. On the contrary, it has extensive experience of working with military organisations. Most notably, this includes supporting peacekeeping operations in the Middle East, carrying equipment and supplies on behalf of numerous nations.
Antonov Airlines and Volga-Dnepr Airlines also have a second joint venture, Ruslan SALIS GmbH, which has provided strategic airlift services to NATO members and partner countries. “We have been proud to provide this solution since 2006, which again recognises the importance and capability of the An-124-100. For international governments, the ability to quickly and efficiently move defence and peacekeeping forces and equipment to fields of operations all over the world is a vital component in achieving their military objectives,” says Gliznoutsa. “Ruslan International Ltd and Ruslan SALIS GmbH have a proven and respected track record of providing unique airlift solutions to support military partnerships, earned over many years of operations,” says Gliznoutsa in conclusion. “We have built trust and confidence in our capabilities and we are confident the An-124-100 will be a vital part of military logistics projects and humanitarian missions for many years to come.” firstname.lastname@example.org