Moscow, Russia - Russian aircraft manufacturer has registered 20 order commitments for the MC-21-300 from three customers during the MAKS 2019.
Russia's Yakutia Airlines has signed a provisional order agreement with Irkut Corporation for five MC-21-300 while the Kazakh operator Bek Air signs for ten aircraft. Another five copies go to an unidentified customer under a tentative order.
There is no further information on engine options or delivery dates.
Since its launch, Irkut MC-21 has accumulated 175 firm orders and 160 order commitments from mainly Russian and CIS airlines.
Siberian operator Yakutia Airlines currently operates six Boeing 737 NG, four Dash-8, six An-24 and four Sukhoi Superjet (SSJ100). Besides MC-21-300, the airline has ten Boeing 737 MAX 7 on order that will be delivered from 2020 to 2021.
The other MC-21-300 customer Kazakh Bek Air's fleet consists of older Fokkers. The airline operates nine Fokker 100.
The MC-21-300 is currently under certification campaign. Irkut president Ravil Khakimov said that the manufacturer's most important task is to complete certification of the aircraft and start deliveries to customers on time as promised.
Russia to test in-house composites for MC-21
On the other hand, Russia's nuclear energy corporation Rosatom began testing of domestically produced composite materials for the aircraft.
The tests will be completed by the end of this year, says Oleg Demchenko, the president of Irkut Corporation.
Due to the sanctions imposed on the Russian Federation, the US supplier Hexcel and Japanese Toray Industries ceased providing composite materials required in the production of some body parts of the aircraft.
Russian- made carbon-fiber-reinforced polymers will replace the imported composites used in the MC-21's wing spars, center barrel, tail fin, and fuselage components.
In January, the U.S. government began to apply embargoes on imports of advanced materials to the country after Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine.