Ilyushin Il-62

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The Ilyushin Il-62 is a Soviet long range jet airliner. Conceived in 1960 by Ilyushin, it first flew in 1963 and entered Aeroflot service on 15 September 1967 with an inaugural passenger flight from Moscow to Montreal. The Il-62 was the Soviet Union's first long-range jet airliner, and the first to be put into service by several other countries. It was also the first Russian pressurised plane to have a fuselage with non-circular cross-section and ergonomic passenger doors, and the first Russian jet with six-abreast seating and international-standard navigation lights. The Il-62 became the longest-lasting type in its class of long-range civilian airliners, with some examples having been in operation for three decades. The Soviet Union/Russia was the largest operator, but over 80 were exported with more being leased by both Russian-sphere and western airlines. Special VIP and other conversions were also developed. The successors of the Il-62 include the wide-bodied Il-86 and Il-96 which were made in smaller numbers than the Il-62 and not widely exported. Although the plane's safety record does not equal that of new generation airliners, it compares favorably with other similar planes of its era, most of which are no longer in civilian service. Its hull loss rate is much lower than contemporary models such as the Boeing 707 and DC-8, and is similar to that of the VC10 even though that model had a much shorter civilian life. Several fatal accidents over four decades mainly involved runway overruns or aborted takeoffs. The braking system employed the reverse thrust of the outer engines only, and if for some reason one or other failed to engage, the plane could become difficult to steer for an unprepared pilot. In seven takeoff or landing accidents involving the Il-62 there were no fatalities, a testament to the high level of structural integrity and in two cases where there were landing overrun fatalities the aircraft had struck objects near the runway. However, the trade-off for the strong airframe is the relatively high fuel consumption rate and some airlines such as Interflug modified their planes in an effort to reduce fuel. On 23 October 1989, DDR-SEG was intentionally landed on a 900m short grass airfield of a hilltop Stölln/Rhinow in a potentially dangerous and dusty maneuver. Fire trucks and ambulance crews were positioned on hand for the landing but were not needed. The jet is used to commemorate the site of the fatal crash of Otto Lilienthal (1848–1896) at the Gollenberg hill. Nick-named "Lady Agnes" after Lilienthal's wife, it is now a museum with the fuselage divided between the Lilienthal collection and a popular wedding registry. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]







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