Huge Freighter crashes in Siberia
Uncontained Turbine Failure
Volga-Dnepr grounds all 12 AN-124-100s
The grounding of a fleet of 12 air freight aircraft is more auspicious event than first blush would indicate. Loss of the second largest cargo plane in these times, in which movement of goods around the world means so much, matters. The details of the subject crash point to a long interlude without this freighter.
The global air cargo market, defined by direct cargo revenue and airmail carriers, is valued at over $250 billion. Within that broad air freight, Volga-Dnepr Group accounted over $1.5 billion (last available report: 2015).The worldwide 2020 revenues are estimated at $250 billion.
While Volga-Dnepr does not appear among the Top 25, its AN-124-100 provides a unique service—out-sized air freight:
This unique freight capacity starts with individual loading and unloading solutions. The Russian logistics operator’s huge aircraft offer the quick delivery of non-standard (including oversized and extra-heavy) cargoes. Such services are in high demand among Russian and international companies operating in the aerospace, oil and gas, energy, automotive, engineering, and other industries.
The Rosaviatsiya investigation and the definitive of remedial actions likely will keep the “Roslan” aircraft out of operations for a while. On take off the no.2 engine (Lotarev D-18T) suffered an uncontained failure. The inboard left-hand engine of the aircraft involved shed its fan hub. The turbine’s failure cut off power to the aircraft systems- radio communications, braking system and a limitation in the trust control of the remaining engines.
Fragments of what appeared to be the fan disk were found inside a warehouse near the airport. The aircraft itself also sustained damage. Debris had penetrated the left-hand side of the fuselage and leading-edge slats. A hole in the right-hand top fuselage suggests debris had gone through one side of the airplane and out through the other.
Powerplants are extremely complex machinery. The engine was designed by the Ivchenko-Progress Design Bureau and is manufactured by Motor Sich factory in Zaporizhia, Ukraine. It was the engine design and manufacturer team that could deliver more than 20,000 kgf . Since 1980, 188 D-18T engines are in operation with a total flight time of over 1 million hours, The T-18 D has a Seven-stage IP compressor, seven-stage axial HP compressor. Its combustor system is annular, and the triple turbine includes a single-stage HP turbine, single-stage IP turbine and a four‑stage LP turbine.
Federal Agency for Air Transport will dedicate substantial technical resources. Both the aircraft and the engine are a matters of great national pride.
Their specialized capacity may be a matter of international value.
Volga-Dnepr Airlines has announced the temporary suspension of its An-124-100(-150) commercial operations as of November 25, 2020 until the investigation completion and identification of causes of aviation incident occurred in Tolmachevo Airport (Novosibirsk)(OVB).
On the 13th of November 2020 soon after take-off the airplane suffered the uncontained engine fan disk failure of series D-18T which resulted in engine failure and the loss of control systems. Carrying 84 tons of cargo with full fuel tanks, suffering engine failure and loss of control elements, the crew managed to avert the disaster, make a 180-degree, land and keep the plane on the runway, skidding off the runway.
Following the incident, the Federal Agency for Air Transport
(Rosaviatsiya) has set up a commission, including Volga-Dnepr specialists, who are identifying the causes.
On the day of the incident, Igor Aksenov, general director at Volga-Dnepr Airlines, said: “After the emergency landing, all crew members were examined by medical personnel and most importantly none were injured. At the moment we are cooperating with the aviation authorities and Novosibirsk airport with respect to this event and will thoroughly analyse the situation accordingly.”
Volga-Dnepr Airlines acknowledges understanding from its customers and partners and takes all the actions to fulfil contractual obligations and resume safe commercial operations onboard An-124-100(-150).
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