Ukrainian state-run aircraft manufacturer Antonov on Thursday held the maiden flight of its new An-178 transport aircraft in the capital Kiev, marking another step towards replacing the nation's aging transport aircraft.
Antonov began research and development on the An-178 in 2010 and based the design on its An-158 aircraft. The aircraft is powered by two engines, the same type as used by the An-148, and has a semi-monocoque fuselage. It also has moderately swept wings, winglets, a T-tail and a retractable landing gear.
"At present, we are having a variety of preliminary discussions, formulating different protocols and negotiating with many countries," said Dmitry Kiva, CEO of Antonov.
The aircraft can carry 99 soldiers, 80 paratroopers or 70 injured people. It can also take part in military operations including logistical support, troop rescue, paratrooper transport, injured people rescue and cargo and light vehicle transportation.
According to Kiva, a total of 100 orders have been placed for the aircraft and the purchasers are from China, Azerbaijan, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries.
"The total price will be 4 billion U.S. dollars for 100 aircraft," said Kiva. More on: http://newscontent.cctv.com/NewJsp/news.jsp?fileId=295034
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