The first upgraded Il-76MD-M makes its maiden flightOn February 28, 2016 the first upgraded military-transport Il-76MD-M made its maiden flight.
The upgrade project was developed by Ilyushin Aviation Complex (which forms a part of UAC) in compliance with performance specifications, submitted by the Russian Aerospace Forces for modernization of their fleet of heavy military-transport Il-76M and Il-76MD aircraft. Specialists of JSC “Myasishchev Design Bureau” were also involved in the development of design documentation. Modernization activities were carried out by OJSC “Il” at the company production facilities in Zhukovsky.
Modernization included flight navigation, radio communication, light, utility and defensive equipment. Outdated (out of production) equipment was replaced with modern items. Assigned service time of the aircraft was extended from 30 to 40 years.
In the first flight the aircraft was flown by the crew under the command of OJSC “Il” chief-pilot, Hero of the Russian Federation, honoured test-pilot Nikolay Kuimov. The flight went in normal, it was made from Gromov Flight Research Institute aerodrome in Zhukovsky.