The AN-12 first appeared in 1958. The aircraft is a cargo development of the AN-10 transport and went into Soviet service in 1959. The pressurised cockpit and crew cabin will hold up to 14 people. The cargo area size is 2.6x3.5x13.5m and the reinforced floor will take up to 1,500kg/sq-m. Maximum payload is in the order of 20,000kg (44,000lbs). Around 850 aircraft were built up until 1973, and served with numerous armed services (including Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Indonsia, Iraq, Poland, Sudan, Syria, and Yugoslavia) and commercial operators. Following the break-up of the Soviet Union this aircraft type can now be found all over the world
The example below is owned by Air Sophia of Bulgaria, who also operate AN-12 aircraft from Singapore, Vienna, and London. LZ-SFL is chartered by CargoAir NZ who transport bloodstock between New Zealand and Australia. Hamilton airport is at the centre of the Waikato region which is noted for its horse studs, so the aircraft often makes several flights a week. The cargo area can be fitted with up to 15 stalls to accomodate the race-horses. Although the aircraft cabin is pressurised the cargo area is not, so when carrying horses the aircraft needs to stay below 12,000 feet.
During a recent Vintage AeroClub fly-in, CargoAir kindly made their aircraft available for inspection. I obtained the images displayed below at that time.
Last Update:- 9 September, 1997
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© 1997 Phillip Treweek, all rights reserved