The Antonov arrives in Adelaide to deliver military vehicles, also everything you need to know about this giant.

Antonov An-124

Today, a much loved aircraft decided to pay a visit to Adelaide just after lunch, after a delayed departure from Darwin Airport earlier in the morning. The Ukrainian mothership, the Antonov An-124 departed U-Tapao International Airport (UTP) in Thailand at 2207hrs (local time, UTC+7) on route to Darwin (DRW).

ADB2521 Route Map (Image: FR24)

The flight time to Darwin was just over six hours, touching down on Australian soil in the early hours of the morning at 0643hrs (6:43am ACST). The aircraft used the callsign ‘ADB2521’ throughout it’s journey. As the plane rested in Darwin, plane spotter’s in Adelaide was nervously watching every flight tracker to see when it would commence its journey down to Adelaide (ADL). After many delays and revised departure times, the flight departed Darwin Airport at 0929hrs (9:29am ACST).

The flight time from Darwin to Adelaide was 3 hours and 37 minutes. The sun decided to hide behind the clouds as the huge aircraft made its appearance at Adelaide Airport, landing on Runway 05 (RWY05) at 1313hrs (1:13pm ACST) and utilised the full length of the runway, all 3,100 meters of it. The aircraft turned around at taxiway ‘Bravo 2’ and followed along ‘Alpha’ until it met up with Adelaide Airport’s Operations Vehicle ‘Car 6’ at the intersection of taxiway ‘Delta 1’ and ‘Alpha 5’.

UR-82009, is registered in the Ukraine and is owned and operated by the Antonov Design Bureau. The aircraft was delivered back in 1987 when the Ukraine was still part of the Soviet Union. The Antonov name has become synonymous with their large freighter aircraft. For 30 years, until the Boeing 747-8F was released the Antonov An-124 was the world’s heaviest operating aircraft following behind the one off Antonov An-225.

There were only 50 of these freighters built during 1982 and 2004, produced in partnership with Aviastar-sp and the former Antonov Serial Production Plant.

The An-124 series of aircraft has a maximum capacity of 88 passengers on the upper deck with the potential of carrying an additional 350 passengers on a palletised seating system. The aircraft itself has a length of 68.9 meters, a height of 20.8 meters and a wingspan of 73.3 meters. The wing area itself is a whopping 628m2.

A mass of media personnel, Australian Government Officials, Defence Officials, Security and Australian Federal Police were waiting for this all important aircraft to pull into Bay 82.

UR-82009, Antonov Design Bureau An-124, Adelaide Airport. © Aussie Weekend Traveller (Bradley Hogg) 2018

The all-important cargo on board was two armoured military vehicles built by German based manufacturer Rheinmetall. On board, was one of their brand new Lynx KF41 Combat Vehicles, it’s one of the most adaptable, agile and hard-hitting combat vehicles.

“designed to confront the challenges of the future battlefield like no other”

(Video courtesy of Rheinmetall Defence, via Youtube.)

Also, on board was a Boxer Combat Renaissance Vehicle which can be configured into many different configurations due to it’s modular construction. The Boxer is a state of the art wheeled vehicle that is highly mobile and has many different variants available all under the Boxer model name.

(Video courtesy of Rheinmetall Defence, via Youtube.)

One of these military vehicles rumoured to be the Boxer Transport Vehicle is set to stay in Australia and become a part of the Australian Defence Force’s fleet. With suspicions arising that the one set to stay in Australia got dropped off at Darwin prior to its arrival into Adelaide.

UR-82009, Antonov Design Bureau An-124, Adelaide Airport. © Aussie Weekend Traveller (Bradley Hogg) 2018

Both vehicles will be on show at the Land Forces Military Conference and it is all part of the third phase of the Australian Government’s $15 Billion dollar combat vehicle contract.

The Antonov An-124 will be in Adelaide for the next week and word amongst the plane spotting community is that the aircraft will depart late next week. Of course, this is subject to change and should only be used as a guide and not relied upon as a definitive departure time.

The aircraft will remain parked on bay 82 around by the long term car park, although you can’t miss the massive Ukrainian aircraft.

So if you are heading down by the airport over the next week, do yourself a favour and check out this huge freighter aircraft, and while you are there you can check out the newly opened Atura Hotel.

DISCLAIMER: All images are copyright, and remain the property of the photographer. Please ask Permission here if you choose to use these photos. Photos are also available for purchase.
© Aussie Weekend Traveller (Bradley Hogg) 2018.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.