On April 14, 2020 the AN-225 Mriya aircraft transported a record-breaking cargo of medical supplies from China to the capital of Poland – Warsaw as part of the fight against the world pandemic of COVID-19. 

On April 13 Mriya departed from Tianjin China Airport, where it was loaded with about 100 tonnes of medicines, tests for laboratory analysis, medical masks and other protective equipment, with a total load of about 1000 m3. In the history of aviation, this cargo volume has never been transported inside the cargo hold of the aircraft. After loading, the world's largest transport aircraft made a flight to Warsaw with a landing on the route at the Almaty Airport, Kazakhstan for refuelling and crew rest. 

AN-225 Mriya aircraft
AN-225 Mriya aircraft

This flight, chartered by Chapman Freeborn Airchartering Ltd (United Kingdom), was the first for the AN-225 after maintenance and modernization performed by ANTONOV Company specialists.

AN-225 Mriya has received a new engines remote control system of the Ukrainian production, new liquid-crystal devices for control of engines’ work, also produced in Ukraine, new modern LED lighting equipment with better characteristics, more energy-saving and more reliable.

Thus, the AN-225 Mriya has joined Antonov Airlines fleet of AN-124-100 aircraft performing charter humanitarian aid and relief operations delivering medical cargo and supplies required to struggle with worldwide COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. As of now since the end of March, Antonov Airlines has already carried more than 1400 tons of cargo from China to different countries in Europe, Americas and the Middle East.

Vitaliy Shost, Antonov Airlines First Deputy Director said: “Our company is very proud of the opportunity to contribute and join the fight against the global pandemic. Planning and performing charter flights in the current difficult quarantine conditions imposed by many countries when there are restrictions applied for landing and crew rest permits, requires selfless dedication and commitment on the part of all airline staff - from commercial personnel and ops planners in the office to pilots and technicians onboard. Therefore, I would like to thank everyone who takes part in the setting up and arrangement of humanitarian flights from China and in particular those who were directly involved in the performance of the AN-225 flight to Warsaw. We extend our exceptional gratitude to our customer Chapman Freeborn and partners for their cooperation and the opportunity to jointly carry out such an important and necessary mission together. ”

The Ukrainian Mriya (the Ukrainian word for Dream) aircraft established more than 250 aviation records, in particular the hauling of single-piece cargo weighing 187.6 tons, as well as the absolute record for the payload of 253.8 tons.