Russian troops destroyed the world’s largest aircraft, the Antonov An-225, at Antonov’s base, Hostomel Airport, during the early days of the Ukraine-Russian war. Recently, the aircraft manufacturer Antonov Co. has announced plans to reconstruct the remarkable airplane.
Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba also tweeted about the rebuilding of the aircraft:
However, everything about this aircraft appears to be enormous, even the cost of bringing it back to life. After inspecting what is left of the Antonov An-225, specialists estimate that it will cost €500 million ($500 million) to rebuild the mega plane. Nonetheless, the Ukrainian manufacturer has claimed that it is too early to discuss a specific sum of money. As a result, the precise amount will be made public later.
Russian troops targeted Hostomel Airport northwest of Kyiv in the early days of the Ukrainian conflict. The Antonov An-225 had arrived at the maintenance facility just a few days before Russia launched its armed invasion of Ukraine. However, this would be Mriya’s final flight. In light of this fact, the aircraft was the target of military action by Russian soldiers, who destroyed it.
The first Antonov An-225 “Mryia” was built to support the Soviet space program Buran. Its mission was to transport the program’s orbiters, and it made its first flight in 1988.
Despite ordering multiple models of the massive aircraft, the Soviet space programme only received Mryia. Indeed, the demise of the Soviet Union came to the end of the Buran programme. As a result, the first Antonov An-225 was placed in storage, and production on the second was suspended.
The Antonov An-225 attracted much attention towards the beginning of the century, primarily for transporting goods. After that, Mryia returned to work, and Antonov planned to finish the second. The company said in 2006 that the second six-engined aircraft would be finished by 2008. But the start of construction was shortly postponed. In 2011, it was estimated that $300 million would be needed to finish the aircraft.
Unfortunately, with the emergence of the pandemic and the associated global recession, Antonov determined that it was no longer economically possible for the manufacturer to continue building the second aircraft.
Currently, it is unclear how much money would be spent on the jet; it was previously stated that Virgin Airways, owned by Richard Branson, would give funds.
The parent company of Antonov, Ukroboronprom, first projected that restoring the aircraft would take more than five years with a $3 billion cost. However, following an expert analysis, Antonov estimated that around 30% of the original plane’s parts might be used to build a new aircraft.