Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute
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TsAGI centenary in the history of aviation: the wide-body Il-86

26 December 2018

Photo from www.ilyushin.org

The first in the history of our country flight of a wide-body jet airliner Il-86 took place in December, 26, 1980. 350 passengers came on board to travel from Moscow to Tashkent.

Why did Soviet scientists have an idea to create a wide-body aircraft? The country gradually increased the flights’ numbers. Especially large passenger traffic was expected in the Olympic year — the summer of 1980th. Under these circumstances, Aeroflot essentially needed a wide-body machine with fuselage, able to seat up more than 300 passengers.

The Ilyushin Design Bureau made the aircraft development. The Zhukovsky Central AeroHydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI) made recommendations on the aerodynamic layout: the moderate thicknesses of classic profiles at average extension wing sweep provided the required characteristics. For the first time in the domestic passenger aircraft the engine pods were placed under the wing. There were introduced the flight control boost system and stability augmented system.

In addition, due to cooperation with specialists of the Centre of aeronautical science, there was created a twin-aisle seating fuselage with nine seats in a line. The cargo storage stands were situated on the lower deck. There worked the “luggage at hand system,” when passengers first left their luggage in the lower bay, and then go into the cabin. The aircraft was equipped with the latest navigation and robot- control systems that allowed a three-man crew to operate flights within the country and abroad in any climatic conditions, at any time of a day. Generally there were applied over 50 new technological solutions when creating the Il-86. In September 1981 the crew of the honored test pilot, hero of the Soviet Union Georgy Volokhov set 18 world records at the production Il-86.

But the large-scale Soviet aircraft was short-lived: because of inefficiency and engines noise the airliner was withdrawn from service from 2000. The last Il-86 regular flights were “Moscow-Simferopol,” “Moscow-Sochi,” “Moscow-Novosibirsk” in 2010.

TsAGI Press Service
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