The world’s largest freight plane, the Antonov AN-225 or ‘Mriya,’ has been wrecked by Russian troops during an attack on an airport near Kyiv, Ukrainian authorities revealed Monday, amid Moscow’s war on Ukraine.
The plane was severely damaged, according to Ukrainian officials, after Russian troops raided a Ukrainian air base in Hostomel, where the plane parked. While the amount of the damage has not been determined, Ukraine has stated that the renowned plane will be rebuilt.
Mriya – The Biggest Plane in the World
The jet is known in aviation circles as ‘Mriya,’ which means ‘dream’ in Ukrainian, and known to draw large throngs of fans at air shows across the world. The remarkable Antonov AN-225, with a wingspan of almost 290 feet, was designed in what was then the Ukrainian USSR during the 1980s, during a tense race to space between the US and the Soviet Union.
History of Mriya
- It was created as part of the Soviet aviation programme to transport the Buran, the Soviet equivalent of the Space Shuttle. When the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991, the Buran programme was cancelled,
- The planes were instead employed to haul enormous cargo loads.
- Only one Antonov AN-225 was ever built by the Kyiv-based Antonov Company, the original designers of the plane.
- It’s essentially a larger version of another Antonov design, the four-engine An-124 ‘Condor,’ which is now in service with the Russian Air Force.
- The plane first flew in 1988 and has been in service ever since.
- It has recently been utilized to convey humanitarian goods during natural disasters in neighbouring countries.
- It was used to distribute medical supplies in impacted countries during the early days of the Covid epidemic.
The Attack on Mriya
Russia has been striking airfields and military bases since commencing its strike five days ago. Russia announced on Friday that it had taken control of the Hostomel airstrip, where the AN-225 was being repaired. The Mriya shot down by Russia as a demonstration of Ukraine’s aviation might.
The repair is expected to cost more than $3 billion and take more than five years.
Hi there! I’m Akash. I was born and raised in Bengaluru, India. I am a freelance content writer and a blogger. I am currently a student studying at a prestigious law school in India. I am an avid reader and writer.