The new Russian strategic airlifter fleet is growing steadily. The fourth modern Ilyushin IL-76MD-90A arrived last weekend with the Russian Air Force, being produced by the Aviastar – Ulyanovsk Aviation Plant and sent on its delivery flight on 29 April 2015.
Aviastar plans to deliver another two new “Candids” – as the NATO reporting name for the type goes – this year, while another eight machines are in various other stages of construction. The state company confirmed assembly of the first new IL-78M-90A tanker aircraft has started.
The IL-78M-90A is a further development of the IL-76-MD-90A, which in turn builts on the legendary IL-76 designed by Ilyushin. Compared to the old versions the 90A has a new flight-navigation system, new autopilot, new communication systems and a “glass” cockpit of digital avianics, helping the pilot with more precision in flight and landing operations. The more powerful PS-90A-76 engines take the place of the D-30KP2s used on the old Candids, while the wing and body of the planes are modified and reinforced to help carry more and heavier loads.
Featured image: Delivery flight of the fourth IL-76MD-90A on 29 Aril 2015 (Image © Aviastar-SP)