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An-124 Antonov
An-124 Ruslan
ASCC codename: Condor
Heavy Transport

DESCRIPTION:
Until the appearance of the related An-225, the Antonov An-124 was the largest aircraft in the world, narrowly beating out the similar C-5 Galaxy. The An-124 built on experience with the giant An-22 turboprop but added several improvements to make the Ruslan more effective.

The An-124 is equipped with an upward-hinging nose and a tail ramp for true roll-on roll-off loading capability. In addition, the two sets of nose wheels can be retracted on the ground to lower the nose and ease cargo loading. The An-124 design also features full-span leading-edge slats on a swept wing allowing excellent short-takeoff ability for such a large plane. The landing gear also feature 24 wheels so that the An-124 can operate from rough fields. A large compartment for up to 88 passengers is provided aft of the flight deck in addition to the 118 ft x 21 ft x 14.5 ft main cargo deck for a total volume of 44,725 ft.

The An-124 first entered commercial service with Aeroflot and was used primarily to transport outsize cargo. Many of these aircraft are now available for leasing by Western companies. A number of An-124 aircraft were also acquired by the Russian military for strategic transport duties. A total of 54 An-124 aircraft were built from 1984 to 1997. By 2000, 26 were in service with the Russian Air Force and 21 with civil operators while five had been lost in accidents. Budget restraints prevented any further military sales but production for commercial customers was continuing at the rate of about four planes per year until about 2003. Although manufacturing had been stopped, Russia and Ukraine have agreed to restart the production line in the second half of 2008 if enough orders are placed.

Last modified 17 March 2011

HISTORY:
First Flight 26 December 1982
Service Entry

1987

CREW: six: pilot, co-pilot, navigator, communication operator, engineer, electrical engineer
military models also carry a loadmaster
up to twelve cargo handlers and a second primary crew for long flights may also be carried

PASSENGERS: 88

ESTIMATED COST:

$150 to $160 million [2008$]

AIRFOIL SECTIONS:
Wing Root unknown supercritical
Wing Tip

unknown supercritical

DIMENSIONS:
Length 226.46 ft (69.10 m)
Wingspan 240.48 ft (73.30 m)
Height 69.10 ft (21.08 m)
Wing Area 6,760 ft (628.0 m)
Canard Area

not applicable

WEIGHTS:
Empty 385,810 lb (175,000 kg)
Normal Takeoff 864,210 lb (392,000 kg)
Max Takeoff 892,870 lb (405,000 kg)
Fuel Capacity (An-124) 471,215 lb (213,740 kg)
(An-124-100) 468,150 lb (212,350 kg)
Max Payload

330,695 lb (150,000 kg)

PROPULSION:
Powerplant four Loratev D-18T turbofans
Thrust 206,360 lb (918.0 kN)

PERFORMANCE:
Max Level Speed at altitude: 530 mph (850 km/h) at 25,000 ft (7,620 m), Mach 0.77
at sea level: unknown
cruise speed: 465 mph (750 km/h)
Initial Climb Rate unknown
Service Ceiling 39,335 ft (12,000 m)
Range 2,430 nm (4,500 km) with 330,695 lb (150,000 kg) payload
6,480 nm (12,000 km) with 88,185 lb (40,000 kg) payload
ferry: 8,690 nm (16,090 km)
Endurance 20 hr
g-Limits unknown

ARMAMENT:
Gun none
Stations none
Air-to-Air Missile none
Air-to-Surface Missile none
Bomb none
Other

none

KNOWN VARIANTS:
An-124 Military transport model
An-124A Proposed military version that would have used six sets of tandem wheels on the main gear instead of five to permit operations from rougher airfields
An-124-100 Civil version modified for compatibility with cargo loading infrastructure at commercial airports
An-124-100M Improved model equipped with uprated D-18 Series 3 engines allowing greater range and shorter takeoff distance, also fitted with more advanced Western avionics allowing crew size to be reduced from 6 to 4 by eliminating the communication operator and engineer
An-124-100V An-124-100 aircraft modified with noise-reduction covers on the engine nacelles to meet noise pollution standards
An-124-100MV Model incorporating the improvements of both the An-124-100M and An-124-100V versions
An-124-100M-150 Upgrade for An-124-100M models to increase payload and maximum takeoff weight, extend flight hours from the original 7,500 to 24,000 (and ultimately 40,000), and replace outdated equipment
An-124-102 Proposed model with a three-crew cockpit
An-124-130 Proposed model, details unknown
An-124-200 Proposed upgrade to add General Electric CF6-80C2 turbofan engines to the An-124-100M
An-124-210 Similar to the An-124-100M but to be equipped with Rolls-Royce RB211-52H-T engines as well as new avionics
An-124AK Proposed launch platform for the Shtil-3A ballistic missile used for launching satellites into orbit, the missile would be carried in the main cargo hold to an altitude of 36,090 ft (11,000 m) and deployed through the aft cargo doors using a parachute before its motor ignited
An-124FFR Proposed firefighting model capable of carrying over 440,000 lb (200,000 kg) of water or fire retardant
An-124KC Aerial refueling tanker proposed to the US as a replacement for the KC-135
An-122KC Believed to be a twin-engine version of the An-124 aerial refueling tanker offered to the US Air Force but few details are known

KNOWN COMBAT RECORD:

none

KNOWN OPERATORS:
Civil Aeroflot
Air Foyle
AJAX
Antonov Airlines
Antonov AirTrack
Atlant Soyuz Airlines
HeavyLift Cargo Airlines
Libyan Arab Air Cargo
Maximus Air Cargo
Russian State Transport Company
Titan Cargo
Transaero Airlines
TransCharter Titan Cargo
Volga-Dnepr Airlines
Polet Airlines
Rossiya
Military Russia, Voyenno Vozdushniye Sili (Russian Air Force)
Ukraine, Viys'kovo-Povitriani Syly Ukrayiny (Ukraine Military Air Forces)
Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Voyenno Vozdushniye Sili (Soviet Air Force)

3-VIEW SCHEMATIC:

An-124


SOURCES:
  • Airforce Technology An-124 site
  • Donald, David, ed. The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft. NY: Barnes & Noble, 1997, p. 58, Antonov An-124.
  • Donald, David and Lake, Jon, ed. The Encyclopedia of World Military Aircraft. NY: Barnes & Noble, 2000, p. 39, Antonov An-124 Ruslan 'Condor'.
  • Gunston, Bill, ed. The Encyclopedia of Modern Warplanes. NY: Barnes & Noble, 1995, p. 49, Antonov An-124 Ruslan 'Condor'.
  • Gunston, Bill, ed. The Osprey Encyclopedia of Russian Aircraft. Oxford, UK: Osprey Publishing, 1995, p. 35-36, An-124.
  • Rendall, David. Jane's Aircraft Recognition Guide, 2nd ed. London: Harper Collins Publishers, 1999, p. 123, Antonov An-124 Condor.
  • Taylor, Michael. Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1996/1997. London: Brassey's, 1996, p. 254-255, Antonov An-124 (NATO name Condor).
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1999/2000. London: Brassey's, 1999, p. 238-239, Antonov An-124 (NATO name Condor).





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