The largest is currently the world's aircraft An-225 Mriya (Dream) was created to meet the needs of the Soviet space program in terms of transportation of bulky cargo. In the middle of 1989. Antonov Design Bureau was requested to design a new aircraft that could carry the spaceship "Buran", major components of the carrier rocket "Energy" and very large equipment for the oil, construction and mining industries. the basis for the design of new aircraft served as the An-124 using a plurality of identical components and assemblies to reduce the cost and accelerate the creation of a new aircraft.
The fuselage and wings of the aircraft An-225 is a modified similar units AN-124. In the fuselage, for example, keep the size of the cross-section, but the increased length; to reduce weight was liquidated rear cargo hatch with its loading devices, but the bow part remained the same; It adds a new wing center section, and has increased its scope.
Mounting engine remained the same, but their number, taking into account the two suspended on pylons under the wing section further increased to 6. Thus, the total thrust achieved incredible size - 1377 kN (309,540 pounds). Each main landing gear An-225 is composed of seven independent struts with twin wheels (the An-124 five exactly the same rack). Oversized loads that can not fit into the cabin (including the "Buran" and parts of "Energy"), carried "on the back"; cargo hold two main attachment points above the central section. To avoid buffeting the carriage of goods "on the back", when designing aircraft An-225 received dvuhkilevoe vertical tail. The prototype made its first flight on December 21, 1988., And in March 1989. in one flight with a maximum take-off weight of more than 500,000 kg (1.1 million pounds) was established 106 world records and records for this class of aircraft. Until now, only two aircraft built; the first of them flew with Buran 13 May 1989. A month later, the combination of the aircraft and the space shuttle has been demonstrated at the Paris Air Show.