The world’s largest mechanical transportation system will reopen.

The storied aircraft transport An-225 can be rebuilt by the Antonov business for at least $500 million USD using 30% of the original parts.

Prior to being obliterated during the Russian-Ukrainian War, an Antonov An-225 aircraft. Image: A Creative Engineering

Engineering work has started on the second Antonov An-225 freight jet, the Antonov firm announced on November 8. The rebuilding of a massive aircraft with an 88-meter wingspan, also known as the Mriya, will cost at least $500 million. The corporation claims that since it is too early to talk about specific costs, the total could rise much further.

Dmytro Kuleba, the foreign minister of Ukraine, also spoke about the proposal to rebuild the airplane model. Where the money for the Antonov An-225 originates from is unclear. According to a prior press release from the business, billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin Airways will be responsible for financing.

The parent corporation of Antonov, Ukroboronprom, at first predicted that the repair work would take more than five years and cost more than $3 billion. The Antonov firm estimated that roughly 30% of the original aircraft’s parts destroyed during the Russia-Ukraine war may be repurposed to construct new aircraft after a comprehensive analysis.

The An-225 was first flown on December 21, 1988, from the Svyatoshyn manufacturing facility’s airport by an Oleksandr Galunenko-led crew. The Buran space shuttle and its components were intended to be transported by the An-225 for the Energiya rocket. The reusable aerospace transport system (MAKS), which can employ a tiny space shuttle with a tank and a plane as its first stage, is anticipated to use An-225 as its launch pad. The second floor is where you may find fuel.

The An-225 has 32 landing gear, 6 engines, and a 640-ton cargo capacity. It can transport massive objects up to 200 tons in the body or exceptionally large loads up to 250 tons in the inner compartment. Another An-225 was constructed in the late 1980s. However, this proposal was shelved after the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1990. Only one An-225, operated by Antonov Air Carrier, is still in operation as of this writing before being destroyed in February 2022.

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