By Bjorn Fehrm
April 19, 2017, ©. Leeham Co: In our second article about Aeroflot, the Soviet Union flag carrier that transformed to a modern airline, we will cover the period from the fall of the Soviet Union until 2010.
This was the difficult period for all participants. The old structures no longer existed and were replaced with… nothing, followed by uncertainty and a long struggle to get back to normal.
By Bjorn Fehrm
April 12, 2017, ©. Leeham Co: Aeroflot, established as the Soviet Union’s flag carrier in 1923, transformed from a state enterprise to a modern airline group after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.
The airline is today Europe’s seventh largest airline, two-thirds the size of Turkish Airlines, but having the same fast growth since 2005. We will cover Aeroflot’s journey in a series of articles, starting with the group’s history.
September 30, 2016, ©. Leeham Co: In our Corners on East bloc aeronautical industries, we will now look at the Chinese civil aircraft industry.
The Chinese aero industry has similarities with the Russian industry in its overall structure. From the start of the industry in the 1950s, it was structured after the Soviet model of research institutes, design bureaus and production companies.
The difference to the Soviet Union was that its own Chinese aircraft designs only started in the 1970s. Before that, the industry built Soviet designs on license and then modified versions of licensed designs.
The first own aircraft designs were presented in the 1980s with a focus on military designs for the first 20 years. Read more
September 23, 2016, ©. Leeham Co: In our Corners on East bloc aeronautical industries, we now look at the main Russian civil aircraft engine companies. As with the aircraft side, there is one overall Russian engine company since 2008, United Engine Corporation (UEC), Figure 1.
This is a state-owned holding which incorporates 80%of the gas turbine engine companies from the Soviet times, employing 80,000 people.
The aim is to coordinate and optimize Russia’s engineering and production resources around present and future gas turbine engines for Aeronautical, Naval and Stationary use.
Soviet and Russian engines have historically been named after their chief designer in the design bureau. We will now describe the main entities in UEC that work with airliner engines. Read more
July 15, 2016, ©. Leeham Co, Farnborough Air Show: We have been at Farnborough Air Show this week, the highlight of the year for an aircraft geek like me. This year there were several interesting aircraft that visited the show for the first time.
Embraer brought over the brand new first prototype of the E-jet 190-E2 and the prototype of their military transporter, the KC-390. Bombardier had their first customer/production CS100 from Swiss to visit the show in addition to their Flight Test Vehicle (FTV) no 5. And Lockheed Martin had the F35B, the vertical landing version, come and hover over the airfield the days that were reasonably rain free in the afternoon.
One thing is clear with the new generation of Single Aisle aircraft: their high bypass engines dominate the visual appearance. Figure 1 shows the 73 inch version of the Pratt & Whitney GTF on the E190-E2 prototype. Huge diameter engine on a not so huge diameter aircraft.
By Bjorn Fehrm
July 14, 2016, ©. Leeham Co, Farnborough Air Show: The company Antonov is world renowned for its rugged transport aircraft. The recent An-124 Ruslan and An-225 Mriya super-heavy transporters are the world’s largest transport aircraft. Both fly daily for the Antonov companies own airline, transporting outsize cargo for companies like Boeing, Airbus, GE, Rolls-Royce and others.
The air freighter company is what keeps Antonov afloat, for it has been hit hard by the fall of the Soviet Union and Ukraine’s decision to split with the Russian Federation and orient itself to the West. Read more