This year has already brought unexpected news for the Russian aviation industry. On January 16, the board of directors of the United Aircraft Building Corporation approved the resignation of Mikhail Pogosyan, which was replaced by Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Yuri Slyusar.
Talks about replacing the head of the UAC began last fall. One possible reason aviation experts called the corporation’s audit in 2013, which revealed numerous, including financial, violations. The Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation, Yuri Chaika, stated that the UAC leadership provided the enterprises with money allocated for the implementation of civil aircraft construction projects in the form of interest loans instead of contributing them to the authorized capital for free. The press service of the aircraft building corporation officially denied rumors about the resignation of Poghosyan.
“Everyone expected the UAC to become an analogue of the Soviet Ministry of Aviation Industry, but by no means a bureaucratic superstructure”
It must be admitted that the results of his work as head of the United Aircraft Building Corporation, which he occupied in 2011, replacing Alexey Fedorov, cannot be called unequivocal. Opinions of not only aviation specialists, but also experts, journalists, and even ordinary people were divided. On the one hand, Pogosyan was considered almost the savior of the Russian aviation industry, under whose leadership the newest combat aircraft began to flow en masse, the fifth-generation T-50 fighter took off, went into the passenger Superjet series. On the other, accusations of creating corruption schemes, failures in the production of SSJ 100, lawsuits and penalties for disrupting the delivery of equipment for the Ministry of Defense. According to the passions around his person, the head of the KLA could only be compared with the former Minister of Defense Anatoly Serdyukov.
But the discussion of the activities of Mikhail Pogosyan at the head of the KLA is mainly built around the “pieces of iron”: “Superjet”, Su-35, Su-37, etc.: soared-no, how many pieces were sold ... And significant changes in the structure of not only the corporations, but also various design bureaus, the complex relationship between the Ministry of Industry and Trade and Rostec, which arose during Pogosyan’s tenure as head of the UAC, was almost not reflected in the media.
The Military-Industrial Courier tried to find the main sights of the KLA, as well as make assumptions about the transformations that the aircraft industry is waiting for with the arrival of Yuri Slyusar.
According to most of the interlocutors, one of the main reasons for the serious conflicts between Mikhail Pogosyan and the leaders of aircraft building companies was the creation in the UAC structure of the so-called specialized directorates (programs): military aviation, civil, transport and special.
Mikhail Pogosyan and Yury Slyusar (right)
look at the pain points of the industry in their own way
“The directorates were not invented by Mikhail Aslanovich. They got him a "legacy" from Fedorov. Even then, the creation of these structures was accompanied by scandals and a power struggle. It was expected that with the arrival of Pogosyan, the situation would change for the better, ”a UAC representative familiar with the situation told the Military Industrial Courier on condition of anonymity. According to him, the corporation was created using the experience of large aircraft building holdings, such as the European AIRBUS Group (until January 2014 of the year - EADS).
The structure of "Erbas" includes three financially independent holding companies that enter into contracts and supply equipment to customers. These are actually Airbus, which is engaged in passenger aircraft, Airbus Defense and Space, which carries out military and space programs, and Airbus Helicopters (formerly Eurocopter) is a helicopter-building association. The Airbus Group itself is a financial superstructure, the role of which is to own shares of companies, delegate representatives to executive bodies and receive dividends.
“The leadership of the UAC began to leave the European scheme in 2008. The directorates lost financial independence, all contracts were concluded only with the KLA itself, which appointed the department responsible for the work and provided funding, ”the KLA employee summed up.
Such a work organization scheme was more reminiscent of the American aircraft-building giants Boeing and Lockheed Martin. But she leveled the importance of design bureaus, which in Soviet times themselves were essentially corporations. This caused sharp criticism and all opposition.
“It was thought that with the arrival of Pogosyan, the problem would be solved, the corporation would find a reasonable compromise with the management of design bureaus and aircraft building companies. We all expected that KLA would become an analogue of the Soviet Ministry of Aviation Industry, but not a financial and managing superstructure, ”a consolidated opinion was expressed by VPK by a senior industry official.
But after his appointment to the post of head of the UAC, Mikhail Pogosyan chose to continue the construction of the “Russian Boeing”. Moreover, each company was assigned to each company. In particular, for the program of transport aviation - "Ilyushin", special - "Tupolev". There is information: in October last year, Irkut passed to the Directorate of civil aviation programs in connection with the work on prospective MC-21.
“It is now easy to say that almost a corporation could be created from each KB. But when the structure of the directorates was laid down, it was difficult to finance, it was necessary to single out promising projects and consolidate all efforts to implement them. The experience of the end of 1990-x and the beginning of 2000-x, when firms were allocated money, but their ability to implement the project was not enough, it proves that we are right, ”the KLA employee explained.
According to some data, the UAC leadership, headed by Mikhail Pogosyan, in the long term assumed to switch to the so-called competition of projects, when design teams create their own aircraft engineering projects, the best of them are selected, they are transferred to the development in a special multi-purpose design office, which first brings to the experienced and then mass production. The task of the groups is to come up with what will be accepted, then - the area of responsibility of the directorates.
This principle of the creation of aircraft technology is implemented in the Boeing and Airbus. But at first glance, quite a reasonable decision of the UAC leadership caused a negative response from aircraft manufacturers and developers who suspected that KB’s activities would be reduced to the creation of promising projects, and the directorate would take on all the further work.
“There was a well-founded fear that there would be neither Tupolev nor Ilyushin — some design groups giving ideas. All design, and hence funding remains in the hands of the UAC and its directorates. The staff of the KB is compressed from hundreds, or even thousands of people to several dozen. All the others go to the directorate, ”the aircraft engineer told the Military-Industrial Courier.
It is clear that this development situation did not suit many aircraft manufacturers. But as explained by the representative of the UAC, such wild variants of turning the design bureau into certain design groups could not be considered.
“The task of the Directorate is to optimize the work. Choose priorities and concentrate all the resources of the KLA, not only its directorate, but also other departments and offices, on project implementation. In such conditions it is much easier to “knit” cooperation, to reduce financial costs. Especially now, serial plants are assigned to each design bureau. In particular, at Tupolev - KAPO, at Il'yushin - Ulyanovsk, etc., ”a representative of the UAC clarified the situation.
At the same time, the majority of specialists in aircraft manufacturing firms polled by the Military-Industrial Courier are of the opinion that, in the current state, the Directorate is an extra bureaucratic superstructure, in which financial resources allocated for the implementation of projects are largely depleted. The problem of interaction between the directorates and enterprises significantly complicated the work of the entire KLA, and it is not clear how Yuri Slusar will act in this case. Opinions of the respondents were divided equally. Some believe that the new head will retain the structure of the directorates, adjusting their work and areas of responsibility. Others suggest that Yury Slyusar, who is familiar with the conflicts between the UAC leadership and aircraft manufacturers, will abandon this scheme.
“We started at the time of Fedorov, continued at Pogosyan. Really it is not clear that the scheme does not work! We need not “Boeing”, but MAP, ”said an aircraft manufacturer familiar with the Soviet experience in managing the industry.
“Modern aerial equipment is very complex, its design requires serious expenses. Therefore, the developed project should be implemented at any cost. There are no options now when projects are created, funding is allocated for them, work is underway, problems arise, and then everything closes, but then something new is started. All resources should be focused on achieving one goal, ”the KLA representative believes.
Saving is our all
Another important decision of Mikhail Pogosyan was the creation of so-called competence centers in the UAC structure. Each of them, as follows from official explanations, “is a separate structure, built on the principle of combining key processes for the creation of aircraft technology, whose functions include the preservation and development of the competence of a corporation in terms of optimal allocation of resources. The activity of the Central Committee includes the stages of the life cycle of the product of the Central Committee: design, production, certification, after-sales service. ”
An example is a competence center created at Aviastar. According to the United Aircraft Building Corporation, it will be engaged in meeting the needs of all enterprises of the KLA, high-quality rational cast and forged billet of steel, aluminum, magnesium and titanium. According to the informed interlocutor, the creation of the Central Committee is a great way to reduce the financial costs of third-party manufacturers. Known история with the system for measuring high-speed flight parameters (SI VSP-35) for the Su-35 and T-50 aircraft, when the UAC declined the services of TsAGI and Aviapribor-Voskhod OJSC, which is part of KRET, and created its complexing center.
At the same time, a paradoxical situation arises, when profile enterprises and institutions that have many years of experience in their fields, established teams and scientific schools are out of work, and competence centers appear in the aircraft building corporation that do not have the necessary skills and potential. designed to replace the authorities.
“Well, what have you achieved in the KLA with SI VSP-35? No savings, only damages. After all, I still had to roll out a rather tidy sum, exceeding the initial estimate of Voskhod and TsAGI, to create an algorithm, prescribe it and bring it to mind. And such “savings” have become ubiquitous in the UAC, ”complains the aircraft manufacturer who is familiar with the situation.
But in the KLA strongly disagree. “Yes, the creation of any Central Committee does not pass without difficulties. It is necessary to teach specialists to gain experience. Costs are inevitable. But in the future everything will work fine. After all, the majority of third-party manufacturers, with whom we deal, often issue substantial accounts, and then disrupt all deadlines. Instead of paying each time, it is better to prepare our own specialists and production, ”one of the managers explained the position of the KLA.
By the way, one of the biggest problems of the corporation, which Pogosyan didn’t solve, was the interaction with TsAGI. As recognized not only at the institute, but also at the KLA, most of the research is carried out through the Ministry of Industry and Trade and only a small part is ordered by the corporation itself.
“The studies carried out by TsAGI require quite serious financial investments. Yes, without some, we can not do and are willing to pay the necessary amount. But we have to save on less significant ones, ”the KLA representative comments.
I must say that the problem of weak interaction within the industry, again, was inherited by Mikhail Pogosyan from the previous leadership. In particular, in the 2008 year, when the first Superjet took off, many experts were surprised to find small “crests” on its wing, they are also aerodynamic cutters of the turbulent boundary layer developing on the fuselage. The solution is typical for the 60 – 70-x aircraft industry, but not for a modern car.
“When flying on the fuselage, turbulent flows arise. It is undesirable that they spread to the wing. There are special formulas for calculating its parameters so that such a disaster does not happen, ”explained the TsAGI official.
At one time, the institute, after “purging” and research, proposed the GSS the best solution to this problem, but the “ridges” on the experimental machine did appear.
"This shows that initially the GSS approach itself was archaic - such" crests "on a military plane could somehow be understood, but on a modern civilian airliner it is yesterday, a return to the end of 60's," the conjectured suggested in the aerodynamics of the interlocutor.
True, the cutoffs did not last long and were soon removed from the experienced "Superjet." According to the “Military-Industrial Courier”, the UAC nevertheless ordered additional investigations by TsAGI.
But the most important thing that Mikhail Pogosyan was unable to do was to achieve a clear distribution of responsibilities between TsAGI and the corporation, whenever the institute performed not only current, but also basic research, for which it was created, directly for the UAC, and not through an intermediary in the person Minpromtorg.
“European counterparts of TsAGI - German DLR and French ONERA. They have a clear structure of interaction with the "Airbus". There are nine levels. The first is basic research. Ninth - mass production. The division between institutes and manufacturers is on the fourth level. That is, where the pilot production begins. It is noteworthy that at the time when research is already being embodied in the metal, their leaders are often appointed to positions at Airbus and work there as employees of the aircraft building corporation, and when they are finished they return to DLR or ONERA, ”said the TsAGI official.
We do not have such interaction and are not even expected.
“Western aircraft manufacturers and researchers draw sketches and create models of promising aircraft in close cooperation. Yes, 95 percent of these developments do not reach the serial sample. But the approach itself and, most importantly, the interaction create new promising areas and even ways to modernize the machines already created. We can only dream of such a thing, ”an aircraft engineer admitted to the columnist of the Military Industrial Courier.
At the same time, all the interlocutors of the publication unanimously acknowledged that they pin great hopes on Yuri Slyusar. They expect that there will be no unnecessary competition, the close contact of the KLA and TsAGI will resume.
“The new head of the corporation, while still working at the Ministry of Industry and Trade, was himself a participant in all these clashes and knows perfectly well what TsAGI is doing. Not once acted as an intermediary in solving these problems. Let's hope that he has enough strength to handle all this, ”said the representative of the KLA.
It must be admitted that the appointment of Yuri Slusarius as the head of the UAC became as ambiguous as the activities of Mikhail Pogosyan in this position before that.
Most of the specialists surveyed by the Military-Industrial Courier admit that the former deputy minister is familiar with the situation, he knows the problems and pain points. Another thing is that many do not have confidence that Slusar will be able to deal with all the "legacy" of Pogosyan.
“I'm glad to be wrong. But when, on the presentation of the new head of UAC, in the presence of Denis Manturov, Slyusar begins to ask the board of directors if he has offended anyone, he immediately has bad thoughts. We are not in kindergarten candy share. It requires rigidity and even cruelty. Pogosyan had all this, ”a representative of the industry expressed his opinion on condition of anonymity.