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Russia’s Frigate Ecojet: Can It Compete With Boeing and Airbus?
10 February 2016

Boeing and Airbus are facing new competition from a Russian rival company, Rosavia, and its new plane.

JENNIFER BILLOCK

Frigate Ecojet (Фрегат ЭкоДжет)

Rosavia, a private Moscow-based airplane manufacturer, is poised to give Boeing and Airbus a run for their money in the race to create a better flight with a new plane concept that serves a niche market.

The new concept plane is called the Frigate Ecojet. Rosavia’s goal with this new aircraft is to bridge the gap between wide-body and narrow-body planes. According to CNN, wide-body aircraft are traditionally used to transport large numbers of bodies on long-haul flights. Narrow-body planes are for shorter flights with fewer people. The Frigate Ecojet is expected to fly larger numbers of people over shorter distances without the weight or economic issues caused by traditional planes.

The Ecojet will fall into its own category: medium-haul, wide-body planes.

It will achieve its goal mostly based on shape — an elliptical fuselage maximizes efficiency by seating more than 350 people while keeping the jet’s size under the wide-body measurements.

Boeing is supposedly looking at manufacturing a similar plane as part of its long-term goals. Rosavia plans to have the Frigate Ecojet up and running by 2018 at a cost of $120 million per aircraft, which is the same price point as the smaller Airbus A321neo.

Demand for a jet like this is already high in Asian countries, and aviation experts expect there to be a demand for up to 2,000 of these aircraft over the next 20 years.