Russia to Retire its Fleet of the World’s Largest Turboprop Aircraft, the Antonov An-22 Antei | Aviation

An An-22A over Moscow on August 10, 2012. (Image credit: Wikimedia Commons)

A follow-on of the An-12, it was first unveiled internationally in the Paris Air Show in 1965

The world’s largest turboprop aircraft, the Antonov An-22 “Antei” will be retired from service of the RuAF (Russian Aerospace Forces). This is according to the commander of its Military Aviation Administration, Lieutenant General Vladimir Benediktov, who revealed the decision on Soloviev Live. He said the plane’s “operation will cease in 2024.”

The An-22, developed during the time of the Soviet Union, is a high-wing, ‘h-tail’ configuration aircraft powered by four turboprop engines, each turning two contra-rotating propellers. It has a circular/tubular main fuselage, with massive landing gear bulges on both sides.

Both features are prominently visible when looked at from the front. It has a capacity of around 80-tons and fly for 5,000-km with full payload at 29,000-feet. Other Russian sources say it has a payload capacity of 60-tons.

Benediktov added that a total of 67 An-22 aircraft were produced, some remained in Ukraine, and there were about 60 aircraft in the Russia’s Military Transport Aviation Command fleet. Open source Russian aviation registries show a majority of them being “cut” from service, with five “in storage”, four still flying and six lost to “catastrophes…


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