Air Transportation: The Silk Road Behemoth

航空运输:丝路巨兽AN-225运输机

Date:2020-04-18 Source:strategypage By:Globalmil Viewed:

April 18, 2020: In March 2020 the world’s largest air transport, the AN-225, took to the skies again after an 18 month refurbishment and upgrades. The electronics were upgraded, one engine was replaced and various minor structural and mechanical repairs of upgrades were performed. The two hour test flight appeared to be a success but there was no news on when the only AN-225 in service would return to work. The worldwide covid19 quarantine has halted the many major construction projects that provides most of the work for the AN-225, which is often the only aircraft that can carry large or very heavy items.
2020年4月18日:经过18个月的翻新和升级,全球最大的航空运输工具AN-225型运输机再次升空。电子设备已经升级,一台发动机已被更换,并进行了各种次要的结构和机械维修。历时两个小时的试飞似乎取得了成功,但是没有消息传出唯一服役的AN-225何时重返工作岗位。全球范围内的covid19疫情已终止了为AN-225提供大部分工作的许多大型建设项目,而AN-225通常是唯一可以携带大型或超重型物品的飞机。
 
Within a few weeks of that test flight the AN-225 was cleared for regular service and got a contract to fly medical supplies from China (where most of this stuff is manufactured) to Poland and apparently there are several other customers waiting to book the AN-225, which can move 350 tons per trip. Most air transports can’t move much more than 25 tons per trip and often less than that. The only AN-255 in service will be doing the ancient, and somewhat moribund, Silk Road (China to Europe) run.
在那次试飞的几周内,AN-225已获准提供常规服务,并获得了一份合同,将医疗用品从中国(其中大部分产品的制造地)空运到波兰,显然还有其他一些客户正在等待预订AN -225,每趟可运输350吨。大多数航空运输机构每次飞行所运送的货物不得超过25吨,而且通常少于该数量。唯一一架服役中的AN-255将进行古老的丝绸之路(从中国到欧洲)运行,而且有点奄奄一息。


AN-225离开天津机场,谁名浪子心/摄
 
The An-225 is the holder of a growing number of air transport records. The latest one was in May 2016 when an An-225 set the record for the heaviest cargo (a 117 ton generator) carried by air over a long distance. The An-225 had moved this load from the Czech Republic to Australia. The heaviest load an An-225 ever carried was 253 tons (four Russian tanks) moved over a shorter distance. A Ukrainian firm owns and operates the An-225 and now has several Chinese partners.
An-225拥有越来越多的航空运输记录。最近的一次是在2016年5月,当时An-225创下了空运最重的货物(117吨发电机)的记录。An-225已将这个货物从捷克共和国空运到了澳大利亚。An-225曾经承受的最重载荷是253吨(四辆俄罗斯坦克)在较短距离内运送。一家乌克兰公司拥有并运营An-225,目前拥有数家中国合作伙伴。
 
AICC (Airspace Industry Corporation of China) wants to build new An-225s that will regularly carry rocket payloads as large as 180 tons to 12,000 meters (39,000 feet) altitude for release and launch into orbit. This project is said to be underway but there has been no confirmation. The An-225 will then land and do it again, and again. This makes it a lot cheaper to put heavy loads into orbit. The first An-225 was built for this purpose, to put the Russian Space Shuttle (the 105 ton Buran) plus booster rockets into orbit. China has a similar project underway.
中国航空工业集团公司(AICC)希望制造新型An-225,将定期运载重达180吨火箭有效载荷至12,000米(39,000英尺)高度,以进行释放和发射。据说该项目正在进行中,但尚未得到确认。然后,An-225将会降落并一次又一次地降落。这使得将重物送入轨道要便宜得多。第一架An-225的制造就是为此目的,是将俄罗斯航天飞机(105吨“暴风雪”(Buran)号)和助推火箭送入轨道的。中国正在进行类似的项目。

 
The AICC deal was initially only for reviving production of the An-225 transport and have the first new one in service by 2019. Getting An-225 could be built that quickly because there was a second An-225 that was about 60 percent finished when work was halted in 1991. Ukraine has granted a license to resume production of the updated An-225 in China. This deal may still involve resuming An-124 (the smaller version of the An-225) production as well. China and AICC is mainly interested in the An-225 and using it for their space program. The uncompleted AN-225 is still not finished and in 2017 the Antonov company was reorganized again. This was described as a liquidation but it was in fact a reshuffling of Antonov assets.
AICC合约最初仅是为了恢复An-225运输机的生产,并在2019年前投入使用第一架新运输机。可以很快制造出An-225,因为第二架An-225已完成约60%时这项工作在1991年停止。乌克兰已获得许可,可以在中国恢复生产更新后的An-225。 这笔交易可能还涉及恢复An-124(An-225的较小版本)的生产。中国和AICC主要对An-225感兴趣并将其用于太空计划。未完工的AN-225仍未完成,2017年,安东诺夫(Antonov)公司再次进行了重组。这被描述为清算,但实际上是对安东诺夫资产的重组。
 
Reviving production is a big deal because only one An-225 was built and it entered service in 1988. The six engine 640 ton An-225 is a scaled up version of the earlier four engine 405 ton An-124. Until 2014, when Russian went to war with Ukraine, the Antonov Aircraft Company was in the midst of supplying the Russian Air Force with more An-124s and there was still hope for reviving the An-225. The war between Russia and Ukraine did not interfere with China continuing to buy military equipment made in Ukraine but it did bring a halt to all cooperation with Russia.
恢复生产是一件大事,因为只有一架安-225飞机建成并于1988年投入使用。六台发动机640吨安-225是早期四台发动机405吨安-124的放大版本。直到2014年俄罗斯与乌克兰开战前,安东诺夫飞机公司正在向俄罗斯空军供应更多的安-124,恢复安-225仍有希望。俄罗斯和乌克兰之间的战争并不妨碍中国继续购买乌克兰制造的军事装备,但乌克兰确实停止了与俄罗斯的所有合作。
 
This odd state of affairs was one of the side-effects of the 1991 demise of the Soviet Union, which was replaced by a much reduced Russia and 14 new nations that had been part of the old empire. The dissolution deal had whatever Soviet assets were in the new nation belonging to it. Most of the civil aircraft manufacturing facilities were outside of Russia, mainly in Ukraine and Uzbekistan. Of the three major Soviet aircraft manufacturing firms, Antonov was concentrated in Ukraine, Ilyushin in Uzbekistan and Tupolev in Russia. Cash and other inducements persuaded Uzbekistan to allow Ilyushin to move a lot of manufacturing back to Russia. Tupolev was merged with several military aircraft manufacturers, as part of the United Aircraft Corporation. Antonov remained independent despite political and financial pressure to reconnect with Mother Russia as well, given the fact that only Antonov could design and manufacture commercial aircraft that could compete with AirBus and Boeing, not to mention many smaller Western firms).
这种奇怪的状况是1991年苏联解体的副作用之一,苏联被大大减少的俄罗斯和14个新国家取代,而这些国家曾是旧帝国的一部分。解散协议中这个新国家拥有境内苏联的任何资产。大多数民用飞机制造设施都在俄罗斯境外,主要在乌克兰和乌兹别克斯坦。在苏联三大飞机制造公司中,安东诺夫设计局集中在乌克兰、乌兹别克斯坦的伊留申实验设计局和俄罗斯的图波列夫设计局。现金和其他诱因说服乌兹别克斯坦允许伊留申将大量制造业迁回俄罗斯。图波列夫与几家军用飞机制造商合并,成为联合飞机公司的一部分。安东诺夫仍然保持独立,安东诺夫仍然保持独立,尽管在政治和财政方面也面临与俄罗斯原体系重新建立联系的压力,因为只有安东诺夫才能设计和制造能够与空客和波音竞争的商用飞机,更不用说许多规模较小的西方公司了。
 
The An-124 was designed in the 1970s, first flew in 1982 and entered service in 1986. Only 55 were built before the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991. The An-124 was originally created as a military transport but Russia and Ukraine found in the 1990s that there was a much larger commercial market for transports as large as the An-124 and An-225. The An-124 and the U.S. Air Force C-5 were the only two transports that could handle oversize material. But the An-124 was the only "jumbo" available for civilian charter and demand for that kept growing. Sensing an opportunity in 2006 Russia and Ukraine began working on a joint effort to resume An-124 production. Another fifty, or more, aircraft were to be produced, starting in 2008 and mostly for Russia. That was delayed because there were problems raising the required cash, as in at least half a billion dollars. By 2012 the money and all the resources (suppliers of components) had been found. Demand for An-124s had increased and now the plan was for at least 70 to be produced initially, and sell them for about $200 million each. The Russian invasion halted production in 2014.
An-124的设计年代为1970年,于1982年首飞,并于1986年开始服役。在前苏联1991年解散之前,仅制造了55架。An-124最初是作为军用运输机制造的,但俄罗斯和乌克兰在20世纪90年代发现,与安-124和安-225一样大的运输工具有着更大的商业市场。An-124和美国空军C-5是仅有的两种可以处理超大物资的运输工具。但是An-124是唯一可用于民用租赁的“巨型飞机”,对此的需求持续增长。意识到2006年的机遇,俄罗斯和乌克兰开始共同努力,恢复An-124的生产。从2008年开始,将再生产50架或更多飞机,主要用于俄罗斯。之所以推迟,是因为在筹集所需资金方面存在问题,至少十亿美元。到2012年,已经找到了资金和所有资源(组件的供应商)。对An-124的需求增加了,现在计划最初至少生产70架,并以每架2亿美元的价格出售。由于俄罗斯开战在2014年停止了生产。
 
The An-124 is the world's largest production aircraft and can carry a payload of up to 150 tons. The An-124 cruises at a speed of around 800 to 850 kilometers per hour. It can carry a maximum payload of around 4,500 kilometers, or carry ten tons of cargo and more fuel for up to 14,000 kilometers. There are around 28 An-124s doing commercial work, with another 25 in military service with the Russian Air Force.
An-124是世界上最大的量产飞机,可运载多达150吨的有效载荷。An-124的巡航速度约为每小时800至850公里。它可以在运载最大有效载荷下航程约为4,500公里,或者可以运载10吨的货物和更多的燃料,航程长达14,000公里。大约28架An-124从事商业工作,另外25架在俄罗斯空军服役。
 
In the late 1980s, a modification of the An-124, the slightly larger An-225, was built. With two extra engines and a larger wing, the An-225 can carry over 250 tons. A second An-225 was under construction when the Cold War ended as the Soviet Union was dissolved in 1991. New An-225s would cost over $300 million each. These are a bargain compared to the $225 million cost of a new American C-17 cargo aircraft. The C-17 also only carries around 79 tons of cargo and is about to cease production.
在1980年后期,制造了An-124的改型,即稍大的An-225。配备两台额外的发动机和一个更大的机翼,An-225可以运载250吨以上的货物。 当冷战时前苏联于1991年解散时,第二架An-225正在制造中。每架新的An-225造价均超过3亿美元。与新的美国C-17型货运飞机的2.25亿美元成本相比,这是便宜的。C-17仅运载约79吨货物,并将停止生产。

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