Russia is preparing to begin construction of the Il-276, a medium-airlift military transport aircraft that is considered as a potential replacement for the Antonov An-32 transport aircraft in the Russian Armed forces. Work on its design was officially completed in March by the Zhukovsky Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute, one of Russia’s leading aircraft design bureaux, as well as the Ilyushin Design Bureau.
Alexey Rogozin, one of Russia’s leading experts in the field of aircraft construction and a former CEO of Ilyushin (who recently stepped down from his post), told AIN that the new aircraft is also designed to replace the An-12 medium transport of the Russian fleet, most of which are seriously outdated. He also noted that the new aircraft should be completed no later than 2023, adding, “I think this is an achievable task in the case of timely funding of the project.”
It is planned that the Il-276 will occupy a niche between the light transport aircraft and the Il-76 aircraft in the Russian military transport aviation. It will be capable of transporting 20 tonnes of over a distance of up to 2000 km. Its maximum speed will be 800 km/h and it will be able to take off and land on unpaved and temporary runways.
Production of the Il-276 will be undertaken by Aviastar-SP JSC at Ulyanovsk, where the planned output is expected to reach 12 units per year. Serial deliveries of the new aircraft are scheduled to begin in 2026.
The turbofan-powered Il-276 is based on the Il-214 design, a multi-purpose transport aircraft that was initially planned in 2010 as a joint product of United Aircraft Corp. (UAC) of Russia and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) of India. However, it was suspended in March 2017.
An official spokesman in the main command of the Russian Aerospace Forces told AIN that the demand for such aircraft from the Russian Air Forces at the initial stage will be at least 55 units.