May 2020: The corona virus pandemic has reached more than 4 Million cases world-wide and the need for medical supplies has reached an all time peak. Correspondingly, the need for cargo flights have skyrocketed as well.
Cargo companies have almost doubled their prices for shipping as demand far surpasses supply during the current pandemic situation, some airlines are even taking their old cargo planes out of storage and are flying some of their passenger planes on cargo only flights as well!
Helping with the cargo relief effort is the world’s largest aircraft, The Antonov AN225, Lets take a brief look on what this big old boy has been up to:
The sole Antonov AN-225 aircraft was built in the 1980s to transport space shuttles and can carry up to 250 tons of cargo. The six-engined freighter had recently been restored to flight following a substantial upgrade programme. Antonov says the aircraft departed Kiev on 11 April on the first commercial service since the modification.
Recruitment of the An-225 will provide a sixth Antonov Airlines transport for coronavirus support work. It has been deployed to transport humanitarian aid and medical equipment to European countries from China. The huge aircraft broke some records as well while flying these missions.
The first record for cargo was set on April 14 when it took off from Tianjin, China to deliver medical supplies to Warsaw, Poland. In a social media post, the aircraft charters KGHM, a Polish metallurgy and mining company, said it was transporting millions of face masks and thousands of protective overalls and helmets. In total the cargo equated to 1000 cubic meters, the largest volume of cargo the six-engine monster has ever carried.
Then less than a week later, the record was broken again when the giant bird transported 150 metric tonnes of cargo from China to France. Operating on behalf of a private cargo company called Dynami Aviation (and nothing to do with the French government’s air bridge), the giant aircraft delivered medical masks, gloves and other protective clothing. According to reports coming out of Paris-Vatry Airport (XCR), it took workers on the ground 10 hours to unload all the cargo.
Below is the flight history of the aircraft over the last 2 weeks :
Support like this, would of course help the world in this difficult times. The world needs to unite in order to end this crisis as soon as possible.
Stay home, Stay Safe!