China’s deal with Ukraine for the World’s heaviest plane the An-225 and the South China Sea runways

Ukrainian aviation company Antonov announced in a press release that they will work with China for joint series production of the An-225 in China under licence. Series production is low levels of mass production.

The plane is the heaviest in the world. It has maximum weight of 700 tons, 200 tons more than a 747, and 50 tons more than the Airbus AN380–800F

The plane packs 32 wheels (the A380 has 22) and can fly at a cruising speed of nearly 500 miles per hour with a maximum range of around 9,500 miles — without subtracting for tonnage added inside Mriya’s enormous hold.

The An-225 needs a minimum of 11,500 feet while carrying its maximum payload to takeoff.

China’s runway at the Fiery Cross Reef [South China Sea] is 3,000 meters (10,000 feet) long and is one of three China has been building for more than a year by dredging sand up onto reefs and atolls in the Spratly archipelago. So it is not long enough for maximum An-225 payload unless it is lengthened another 1500 to 2000 feet.

China does have at least seven 4000+ meter runways

SOURCES – Antonov, war is boring, reuters, wikipedia