OJSC “Il” General Director Sergey Sergeev, “I want the first production Il-112 to take off in two-three years.”

16 October 2014
С.А. Сергеев на ВАСОOne of strategically important projects for Voronezh Aircraft Manufacturing Company (VASO) in the nearest future, along with volume production and upgrade of the long-range airliners Il-96, the regional An-148, manufacture of aggregates for the new Il-76MD-90A carrier, will become volume production of the light military-transport aircraft Il-112. OJSC “Il” General Director Sergey Sergeev spoke about the future development of this project, about engineering plans for the new transport aircraft, and about creation of a major vertically integrated structure affiliated with United Aircraft Corporation on the basis of OJSC “Il”.

- Sergey Alekseevich, in your recent visit to Voronezh you had a meeting with executives of VASO and JSC “UAC – Transport Aircraft.” What questions were discussed there?
- To begin with, I would like point out that it wasn’t my first visit to VASO. I have been there before as UAC Director of Directorate for transport aviation programs. I want to say that the factory begins to change and these changes are for the better.

As for the meeting, the topic of discussion was implementation of the manufacturing program for the Il-96 aircraft, that are planned to be handed over to the governmental customers this and the following year. Together we elaborated decisions for various difficult issues. But the main theme of the meeting was concerned with the Il-112 project that was put on hold by decision of Defense Minister several years ago. Today the situation has improved for us.

I hope that soon we will sign the contracts for engineering and production of the Il-112 for the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. We are awaiting the decision of the Government. We plan that the Il-112 will be in demand mostly among state institutions, not only for the Ministry of Defense, but also for FSB, EMERCOM and other ministries and establishments. We consider the plans, according to which by 2030 we will supply approximately 200 aircraft of this type to the governmental customers.

- The plans are ambitious, but 2030 is still far distant. Realistically speaking, when will the first experimental aircraft be able to fly, how long will the tests take, when will the Air Force receive the first production airplanes?

- The Il-112 is a replacement for the An-26 that are still widely used by Russian operators. The deadline is strict, and cooperation between all the participants of the venture has not been fine-tuned yet. But I’m optimistic about our future. By the end of the decade the first Il-112 aircraft, manufactured by VASO, should be supplied to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. According to our plans the first prototype will fly in two-three years.

Financing of organizational production-support work will begin in 2015. At present in OJSC “Il” there has been created a separate structural department — Directorate for the Il-112 program. This directorate will also include OJSC “Il” General Designer and Deputy General Designer. A separate directorate will also be created as part of UAC. The prime contractor of the contract for supply of the Il-112 with the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation will be JSC “UAC – Transport Aircraft.”

- The Il-112 is definitely an important project, but not the only one that OJSC “Il” is occupied with today. What other advanced projects the Ilyushin team is working at?

- We have enormous challenges. A complete fleet updating in all classes of transport aviation – light, medium and heavy long range – is required. First and foremost, a major event for the whole industry is the launch of volume production of the Il-76MD-90A.

We have already mentioned the light military-transport aircraft Il-112. We plan to begin the designing of military-transport aircraft with carrying capacity up to 20 tons as a replacement for the An-12 (Russian-Indian MTA program). In 2016 we intend to start the creation of a series of super-heavy aircraft with carrying capacity of 80 tons and more. These are wide-body aircraft. There is already the project index: advanced transport aircraft “Yermak.” Volume aircraft production under this project is expected to begin by 2024.

The main objective for us is to make up, to regain our position as one of the leaders of aircraft industry. To complete this it is necessary to considerably reshape our work format. It is expected that by the end of 2015 – the beginning of 2016 a vertically integrated corporation, that executes the full cycle of works on creation and sale of aviation equipment, will be organized on the basis of OJSC “Il”. With emphasis on the development of transport branch.

- What will this corporation represent and who will become part of it?

- First of all, I would like to say that the creation of this corporation will be executed step-by-step. It is planned to conclude the first stage by union of OJSC “Il” with JSC “UAC – Transport Aircraft” and JSC “Myasishchev Design Bureau.” At the second stage – in 2016-2017 – this new holding structure is expected to include CJSC “Aviastar-SP” (Ulyanovsk) and JSC “VASO” (Voronezh). We will also consider the feasibility of incorporation of overhaul facilities.

In addition we have serious intentions of enlargement of OJSC “Il” branches in Voronezh and Ulyanovsk. In Moscow (OJSC “Il”), Zhukovsky (JSC “Myasishchev Design Bureau”), Ulyanovsk (OJSC “Il” branch) and in Voronezh (OJSC “Il” branch) we need to increase engineering and design potential by two and a half times. In the new holding company it is planned to restructure OJSC “Il” and JSC “Myasishchev Design Bureau” facilities in Zhukovsky. By that I mean the creation of united Flight Test and Development Base, Laboratory and Test Complex, etc. We begin to work up the problem of execution of complex maintenance of Il-96 aircraft at VASO. After liquidation of Domodedovo service facility this topic became relevant. Factory specialists will have to maintain airworthiness and master complex maintenance programs.

- Sergey Alekseevich, Ilyushin Aviation Complex and VASO not only have strong long-standing business connections, but also warm human relations between them. What would you like to wish VASO workers?

- Above all to be more positive. There are two main components to it: work and family. A person should go to work with joy and return home with the same kind feeling, knowing, that his family waits for him. We have so much work to do that it is possible to manage with it only if one has solid support. If one has a good family, he or she is likely to be a good worker. And of course in two-three years I want us all to see the first flight of the Il-112, to watch it fly up in the sky. As the developers of the project, we will do our best to make it happen.

  would like to say something specifically about young people in the industry. It is necessary to create conditions so that more young people would choose to work as designers, machinists, technologists, so that the prestige of these professions would increase. At present in aviation industry there is severe shortage of professional design engineers who can work with modern digital computer technologies, shortage of highly skilled production workers.

If we speak about the start of the Il-112 project, then VASO will have to employ not even 700 people, as the enterprise estimates now, at the current development stage, but not less than 1500-2000 people.

And it is not a distant prospect, it should begin in the next year. But those who will come will not get the required skill level right away. They will need to learn a lot.

It is necessary to approach these questions without delays. Both OJSC “Il” and VASO have a lot of intensive work ahead of them.