British journalists were impressed by the huge turboprop aircraft for the Russian army. The military has at its disposal a number of air transporters, which bear the title of the largest aircraft in the world among their class.
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In the middle of the last century, the USSR army needed a large aircraft to create an alternative to the An-12 and An-8 models. As a result, the An-22 was created, which is a large vehicle aimed at transporting military equipment or other oversized cargo. The authors of the article for British Simple Flying were greatly impressed by the aircraft's ability to transport 4 BMD-1 units, while the An-12 could only lift one tracked vehicle.
An additional advantage of the An-22 is its ability to take off from short ground-type runways. This was achieved by equipping the aircraft with four propellers and a reliable landing gear. Visually, the An-22 follows the tradition of transport boards with a highly placed wing and loading through the rear door. The length of the cargo compartment reaches 33 m with a useful volume of 639 “squares”. The front compartment is sealed by a bulkhead. This allows 28 passengers and 8 crew members to be accommodated with relative comfort.
“The assembly of the An-22 was completed in 1975 after the delivery of 66 units of the USSR Air Force and the transfer of part to the needs of Aeroflot,” British journalists said.
After assembling the An-22 model for the army, the aircraft was able to set 14 records. Among them, the loudest was the air rise of metal blocks with a total mass of 100 tons to a height of almost 7.85 km. Today, the 76th VTAE in Tver has 6 An-22 units, half of which are actively used. It is planned that the corresponding machines will be used until 2033, and then give way to more modern counterparts, PolitRussia reports.