Moscow Starts Developing Heavy Engine for Joint Chinese-Russian Airliner

Russia has informed China about the beginning of the development of a heavy aircraft engine with a thrust of 35 tons for the Sino-Russian long-range wide-body aircraft. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin told reporters on Monday after a meeting of the Russian-Chinese intergovernmental commission on the preparation of regular meetings of the heads of government that this is the key point of the project for the development of a joint airliner.

“In addition, we informed the Chinese side of the beginning of the work on Russia’s heavy aircraft engine in the thrust segment up to 35 tons, the decision on creating which was made by the Russian president recently – in May, and the necessary funds were allocated”, he said. “This almost solves the problem associated with the creation of a long-range wide-body aircraft, because the plane is impossible without an engine”, Rogozin added.

The parties have agreed that Russian and Chinese aviation companies would first of all determine the operational life of the aircraft currently used on the leading air routes.

Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) and Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China Ltd (COMAC) began in early 2015 preliminary design of their proposed joint 250-280-seat wide-body airliner, which Moscow now expects to enter service in 2025.

The engine will be among the most powerful in the world, more powerful than that used on Boeing 787-10 with 340 KN thrust. Russia will be in charge of building the engines while China, the body of the airliner. Russia will build an engine plant for the airliner while the airliner will be assembled in China.

The airliner will be developed on the basis of Russia’s Il-96 airliner, which is quite reliable as it is used as Putin’s presidential aircraft. However, Il-96 is much smaller than the airliner that Russia and China have been jointly developing. It uses 4 engines while the airliner will only use two engines with much higher fuel efficiency.

Production of first prototype will be completed in 2023

China has recent work on a large domestic engine that they put on the Il-76

An Il-76 installed with Chinese homegrown turbofans. It shows that China has made powerful large bypass ratio turbofan engines for its large transport aircraft including Y-20.

China’s engine is noisier and less fuel efficient, and a generation of technology behind Russia engines (which are behind american engines)

China’s engine on a Russian Il-76

SOURCES – Russia Insider,