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The new aircraft Il-78M-90A tanker made its first flight
Thursday, 25 January 2018

Today, January 25, the flight model of the prospective Il-78M-90A tanker aircraft made its first flight. The pilot was the pilot of the Ilyushin Hero of the Russian Federation, honored test pilot of the Russian Federation Nikolai Dmitrievich Kuimov.

This machine was the first aircraft tanker produced in Russia in the post-Soviet period. Earlier, the production of IL-78 aircraft was based in Uzbekistan.

The leading developer of the aircraft - Aviation Complex. SV Ilyushin, the manufacturer - Aviastar-SP plant.

The new improved modification of the tanker is based on the latest IL-76MD-90A military transport aircraft. Design and creation of design documentation, the production of the aircraft was carried out on the basis of modern digital technologies.

The aircraft is equipped with four engines of the new generation PS-90A-76 with a high degree of bypass ratio and increased take-off thrust. They comply with the norms on noise level on the ground, determined by the requirements of Chapter 4 of Annex 16 of the ICAO standard, as well as on the emission of harmful substances into the atmosphere. Their specific fuel consumption is 12–14% lower than that of the D-30KP engine installed on previous modifications of the aircraft fuel-servicing trucks. Therefore, the IL-78M-90A is characterized by an increased range of flight and can take more fuel to refuel aircraft.

The flight-navigation complex has been completely updated, the "glass cabin" has also been implemented on the plane, which allows to reduce the load on the crew and improve flight safety.

The newer IL-78M-90A tanker retained the possibility of using it as a military transport aircraft. Re-equipment does not require a large amount of work and is carried out at the aerodrome. If necessary, equipment for fire fighting can be installed on the aircraft.

In the future, the IL-78M-90A will become the main tanker fitted for refueling in the air of long-range, front-line and special aircraft. He is able to simultaneously fuel two front-line aircraft (such as the Su-27/30/34/35, MiG-29/35). With the tail unit it is possible to refuel long-range and special aircraft. When using IL-78M-90A on the ground, it is possible to simultaneously refuel up to four aircraft.

All work on the modernization of the aircraft from the beginning of the design to the release of the flight model was carried out in digital form using modern computer systems. The design and technological documentation for the product has been completely converted into electronic form and has been launched into serial production in modern digital technologies.

The final assembly of serial tankers will be carried out at the Aviastar-SP plant in Ulyanovsk, where work is currently underway to install the final assembly line for the heavy Il-76MD-90A military transport aircraft and the Il-78M-90A tankers. The line consists of several stations providing complete assembly of the aircraft. One of the most important is the docking station of the fuselage compartments and airframe assemblies, which include stands of a Russian-made, stepless automated assembly. Automation of processes reduces the docking time of the fuselage and the assembly of the airframe. Control over the correctness of the assembly will be performed by means of laser-optical measuring systems.

The new line will reduce the labor intensity of the docking works, ensure controlled quality, and reduce the dependence on the qualifications of technical personnel.

Contact details from our directory:
Ilyushin Aviation Complex Airframer
Related aircraft programs:
Ilyushin IL-76