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Company News

27 December 2007

AEROFLOT to say goodbye to its legendary tupolev 134 liners

December 27, 2007. Moscow – On the edge of the New Year, on December 31 Aeroflot stops operation of the legendary Tupolev-134 (Tu-134) airplanes. The SU753 flight from Kaliningrad to Moscow (departure 11:00, arrival 13:50) will become the last one in the history of commercial operation of this liner on the Aeroflot’s routes. Some of these 14 airplanes currently owned by the Aeroflot will be offered for purchase to its subsidiaries, “Aeroflot-Don”, “Aeroflot-Nord” and “Aeroflot-PLUS”.

Tu-134 jet has been furrowing the skiesfor more than 40 years, being the most popular and mass manufactured air vehicle in the entire history of the national aircraft engineering. It has been designed and first built to replace regional airplane called Tu-124. And the first take-off the new jet has made in 1963 under the name Tu-124A. In 1965 the plane has been renamed as Tu-134, and one year later its serial production has been started at Kharkov Aviation Plant.

There were totally 852 airplanes of this type in various modifications made. As of the January 1, 2006 the state registry of civil aircraft of the Russian Federation contained 223 Tu-134 airplanes, from which 162 vehicles were in operation.

The Tu-134 is a short-haul passenger liner. From the moment of its commissioning it has been used by the Aeroflot almost on all commercial directions in Eastern and Western Europe, except Madrid and Lisbon. Tu-134, piloted by the crew under command of A. S. Gavrilov, has made its first international flight from Moscow, Sheremetyevo airport, to Stockholm on September 12, 1967.

Within the last time this airplane operated on internal airlines of Russia, in CIS countries, in Northern Africa, Middle East and Couth-Eastern Asia. The JSC “Aeroflot – Russian Airlines” has been using this plane primarily for the flights toSt.-Petersburg, Volgograd, Perm, Kiev, Kaliningrad, Astrakhan, Minvody, Chelyabinsk, Ufa, Dnepropetrovsk, Riga, Samara, Sochi, Arkhangelsk, Naryan-Mar, Omsk, Yekaterinburg, Rostov-na-Donu, Krasnodar, Tyumen, Kazan, Minsk, Simferopol. Such a huge popularity and wide industrial use of this plane have been based on its simplicity in operation, ease of piloting and sufficient comfort for passengers. East German “Interflug” airline (1968) and later the "LOT" (Polish airlines) were the first foreign airlines to acquire the Tu-134. Upon adoption of the Chapter 3 of the Appendix 16 of the ICAO, which has toughened noise and other emissions related requirements to the aircraft, the door to Europe for the Tu-134 has been closed.

For the entire history of the Aeroflot the company operated the fleet of over 600 Tu-134 vehicles. The average volume of passenger traffic by Tu-134 airplanes from total amount of all passengers served by Aeroflot, is 7 – 9%. For the period from 1995 through 2007 the Tu-134 airplanes have delivered to their destinations by charter and regular flights more than 6.3 million passengers, almost 18 thousand tones of cargo. According to some estimates, for the entire period of their operation these airplanes have carried over 10 million passengers and more than 30 thousand tones of post and cargo.

Tu-134 airplanes maintenance and ensuring of their compliance with flight safety standards, as well as regular technical servicing, have been made by the ATC ATK of Aeroflot. And within the entire time of these airplanes operation they have been subjected to constant modernizations, including enhancing of in-flight resources, installation of new on-board equipment and avionics. Customized airplane of this type with VIP passenger cabin was extremely popular.

For the entire period of operation total in-service time of the Tu-134 aircraft has come to half a million hours, these airplanes have made more than 250 000 landings in various airports of the Russian Federation and foreign countries. In terms of efficiency and reliability index K1000 this airplane has been recognized as fail-safe and almost infallible vehicle. For the entire term of operation by the Aeroflot there were no registered accidents with this airplane, which fact once again evidences excellent quality of technical maintenance.

Technical characteristics of the Tu-134:

Passengers capacity­68 people
Diameter of fuselage ­of 2,9 m
Length of the plane -­37,1 m
Scope of a wing -­29,0 m
Height of the plane -­9,02 m
Maximum take-off weight -­47,6 t
Pay load -­8,2 t
Cruiser speed -­850 – 900 km/h
Flight range -­2000 km

Tu-134s will be replaced with the new generation aircraft designed by Sukhoi design bureau and the mid-range airplanes A319 and A320, which are already successfully working in the Aeroflot.

The new generation airplanes will be more comfortable, efficient, modern. They meet all the up-to-date international operation safety and comfort standards. Original design solutions will allow the company to offer the passengers the brand new quality product. Simple and easy access to the luggage shelves will ensure simple and safe storage of suitcase carts approved by the IATA as the hand-luggage, there will be also enough space for overcoats.

The on-board technical maintenance system capable to detect any malfunctions, including those which may occur in separate design modules in all the aircraft systems, will allow easy and quick fixing of any defects, which would in turn facilitate avoiding of any delays.

Another great advantage is provided by combination of the new SSJ jet high performance features with the SaM146 engine, including 10% reduction of fuel consumption per one passenger seat, which fact will assist in restricting of tariffs growth. Modern design and production technologies used in the SSJ will allow the company to enhance service quality, improve flight safety, provide required flight frequency and regularity.

Joint Stock Company "Aeroflot - Russian Airlines" (AFLT) is a recognized leader on Russian civil aviation market, in fact the company is the national carrier. Being the biggest aviation company in the country Aeroflot annually serves more than 8 million passengers, same figure being taken together with Aeroflot subsidiaries comes to 10 million passengers a year, i.e. almost 25% from total number of Russian air passengers. Having a fleet of 83 jetliners the company makes flights to 93 destinations in 47 countries worldwide (302 flights a day). The company controls 51% of Russian international flights and approximately 12% of internal flights. Net profit of the company in 2006 was 7.9 billion Rubles (US$258.1 million of consolidated net profit as of the IFRS).

Aeroflot is one of the oldest aviation companies in the world and one of the most famous brands on the globe. Established in 1923 the company is now being based in Moscow in Sheremetyevo international airport. In 2006 Aeroflot became first Russian aviation company to join global SkyTeam alliance. Integrated flight network of the alliance combines 841 destinations in 162 countries around the world. This ensures ultimately unlimited traveling opportunities for all Aeroflot' passengers. Aeroflot' clients may enjoy all frequent flyer and bonus programs of the alliance partners. More information is available on www.skyteam.com.

Aeroflot is the one and only IOSA safety standard certified aviation operator in Russia. On-line booking may be accomplished and paid on www.aeroflot.ru.

Department of public relations