With a budget of close to $7 billion, the MC-21 narrowbody airliner is the most ambitious and expensive civilian aeronautical project ever attempted by a Russian company. Irkut, part of Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. (UAC) is leading the program.
It was an airshow planned and prepared for during the worst of the past two years of economic downturn and yet Farnborough International 2010 ended up delivering gladly received evidence that a recovery is gathering momentum in the aerospace industry.
Russian aircraft manufacturer Irkut signed a memorandum of understanding with Ilyushin Finance at Farnborough for the sale of 50 MC-21 airliners, Irkut’s first announced orders, albeit MOUs. MOUs don’t strictly count until they become firm orders backed by substantial deposits, but it’s a start. Before the airshow, Irkut reported only interest from Russian and Western airlines.
Irkut has signed a memorandum of understanding with VEB Leasing, a subsidiary of Russian-based Vnesheconombank, for 15 firm and 15 optional MC-21 narrowbody airliners. The signing took place on Monday and the Russian airframer’s CEO, Oleg Demchenko, promised more contracts will come here at the show.
This week’s Farnborough airshow will provide the closest look yet at what Irkut Corp. plans to deliver when it completes development of its MC-21 airliner family. The Russian company has had an almost full-scale mockup of the single-aisle transport produced in the U.S. and it will unveil it here today.
Germany’s MTU Aero Engines has finished building the first high-speed, low-pressure turbine for Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower PW1524G, the engine destined for the Bombardier C Series aircraft.
Best known as a producer of the Sukhoi Su-30MK series of heavy fighters, Russia’s Irkut Corp. is looking to the commercial sector to provide the backbone of its future. The MC-21 airliner project is now in development and Irkut recently selected a series of Western systems suppliers as it moves toward a projected first flight date in 2014.
Pratt & Whitney’s new PW1000G–formerly known as the Geared Turbofan–found its third application this month in the MC-21 narrowbody under development by Russia’s Irkut Corporation. For Irkut, Pratt’s willingness to spend the resources necessary to adapt a 30,000-pound-thrust version of the PW1000G to power a hypothetical Russian airliner lent some much desired credibility to the still relatively obscure program.
Russia’s Irkut Corp. has chosen the Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW1000G engine to power the MC-21–a new family of 150- to 210-seat passenger jets scheduled for first flight in 2014 and entry into service in 2016. The deal gives Pratt’s PW1000G–formerly known as the Geared Turbofan–its third firm application. Mitsubishi has chosen the engine for its MRJ regional jet and Bombardier for its C Series narrowbody.
Irkut Corporation is evaluating tenders from Western engine, avionics and systems suppliers for its proposed new MC-21 family of narrowbody airliners. The Russian airframer (Hall 4 Stand C114) wants the first of the new model to enter service in 2016, and it intends to offer variants with capacity of 150, 180 and 210 seats.