Ruslan international – the joint venture company which manages and markets the 17-strong fleet of Antonov An-124 aircraft belonging to its shareholders Antonov Airlines and Volga Dnepr Airlines – has handled the movement of a massive deck loader for the Boeing 747 Dreamlifter.

The special cargo loader –which is used for loading and unloading 787 parts from the 747 Dreamlifter – weighed 109,000 kgs. At 33.13 m long, 6.08 m wide and 3.44 m high, it was one of the largest and heaviest pieces ever carried in the giant An-124, and fitted the aircraft with only 10cm clearance.

The wheeled loader was winched onto the An-124 at Riverside Air Force Base, Riverside County, California, and flown to Charleston Air Force Base, South Carolina – a distance of 1,900 nm / 3,500 km.

The Boeing Dreamlifter is a modified 747-400 passenger aircraft, and is the primary means of transporting major Boeing 787 Dreamliner assemblies from suppliers around the world to the 787 final assembly plant in Everett, Washington State. Four Dreamlifters are in operation.