IL-78M-90A – Coating Before Test Flights
Coating of the first flight model of IL-78M-90A refuelling aircraft, developed by Ilyushin Aviation Complex, has been accomplished at the special purpose Spectre-Avia complex in the city of Ulyanovsk.
The aircraft was built at the Aviastar-SP factory. About 400 litres of material were used for the aircraft coating. Drying of each of the two layers lasted 24 hours. Emergency and rescue marking was then put on the aircraft, namely on the places of aircraft emergency escape, door edging strips, tail numbers, and insignia. After the flight tests, IL-78M-90A is to be painted in the livery of the customer, the Russian Defence Ministry.
Painting is going to take place at Spectre-Avia complex, with the help of special enamels developed by the All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Aviation Materials (VIAM). The flight model of the promising IL-78M-90A refuelling aircraft performed its first flight on 25 January 2018.
The model became the first refuelling aircraft produced in Russia in the post-Soviet era. In a longer run, IL-78M-90A will become the main refuelling aircraft adapted for in-flight refuelling of long-range, front-line, and special-purpose aircraft. It is capable of simultaneously refuelling two front-line aircraft and one aerial vehicle of long-range and special-purpose aviation. By efforts of the aerodrome facilities, the refuelling aircraft can easily be converted into a military and transport or a fire-fighting aircraft.