One of the most significant losses to the Ukrainian aviation industry during the initial stages of the Russia-Ukraine war was the Antonov An-225, the largest aircraft in the world. The development of a second Antonov An-22 cargo aircraft has been announced by Antonov. The company stated on social media platforms that “currently, design works in this direction have begun.”
The manufacturer Antonov shared the information on Twitter with the following statement: “In the presentation of information with reference to the acting of the General Director of the “ANTONOV” State Enterprise regarding the construction of the new “Mriya,” published by the “Bild” publication and some Ukrainian mass media, an error was admitted.” They clarified, “At this time, design work has started in this direction.”
However, there are many issues surrounding the building of a new Antonov An-225. The funding required to construct the plane is the main issue following the ongoing conflict. According to Antonov, the company will require around 500 million euros to construct the largest plane ever.
When the Russian invasion began on February 24, 2022, the airplane was being stored at Hostomel Airport, the location of the Antonov Company. The airport, which is close to Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, was attacked on the first day of the invasion. Russian paratroopers were supposedly sent to the area to create a bridgehead so that more troops could be airlifted in. Mriya suffered severe damage during the conflict for Hostomel’s control.
The An-225’s second unfinished airframe, which was initially intended for ground testing, was kept at Hostomel. Its current location is unknown.