Kazakhstan’s first Shaanxi Y-8F tactical airlifter performed its maiden flight at the Shaanxi Liugu Airport in Chenggu, China on June 14, 2018.
The Y-8F-200WA transport aircraft will be delivered to the Kazakh Air and Air Defence Forces as part of a contract signed between Kazakhstan and the Shaanxi Aircraft Industry (Group) Co. (SAIG) and China Aviation International in Beijing, on April last year. According to an agreement, the order will be completed in the first quarter of 2019.
The Y-8F-200WA is an upgraded version of the Chinese Y-8 medium-size, medium-range transport aircraft designed and manufactured by China’s Shaanxi Aircraft Company.
Shaanxi Y-8 or Yunshuji-8 aircraft is based on the Soviet Antonov An-12 turboprop transport aircraft. Y-8 has become one of China’s most popular military and civilian transport/cargo aircraft, with many variants produced and exported. Although the An-12 is no longer made in Ukraine, the Chinese Y-8 continues to be upgraded and produced.
The Y-8 is used for military and commercial operations. The aircraft is used for transporting troops, dropping supplies and functioning as an air ambulance. It is capable of hauling 20 tons of cargo, approximately 96 soldiers, or about 82 paratroopers in the cargo compartment which is 13.5 metres long, 3 metres wide and 2.4 metres high.
An estimated 169 Y-8 aircraft had been built by 2010.