It is warm, the sky is blue, soft rumbling is heard from the most powerful turboprop engines in the world… We are at the aribase in Engel’s.
This is the commander. He is also a pilot and makes practice flights on Ilyushin-78.
Tu-95MS is a turboprop bomber and rocket carrier, the fastest screw plane, one of the sybols of Cold War. It is the only turboprop bomber which had a serial production. It was designed for bombing important enemy’s targets with cruise missiles under any weather contitions and at any time of the day.
On July 30, 2010 these planes broke a record of non-stop flying, after they had covered 30 thousand kilometers, crossed three oceans and refueled four times!
Tu-95SM is a carries of X-55 cruise missiles.
A double-barrelled gun GSh-23 is located in the rear of the aircraft. A range of a 23×115 milimeters bullet is 2 kilometers.
Preparing the aircraft for a flight.
Inside of the cabin of Tu-95MS.
The crew consists of seven people. There are no ejection seats for them, so in case of emergency, they should leave the plane through the entrance ports.
Tu-95 has the most powerful engine in the world (15000 hp). Its propellers have a diameter of 5.6 meters which is more than a single track tunnel of Moscow Metro.
It is also one of the noisiest aircrafts in the world and can be spotted even by hydroacoustic systems of submarines, however it is not critical for making nuclear missile strikes.
At this airbase they make practice flights twice a weak minimum.
These aircrafts are practicing take-offs and landings, refuelling in the air and long flights over Russia.
The first to take off is a rocket carrier scout plane. It makes a circle of a 300-kilometer radius.
Tu-95MS is about to take off. The two lights imitate a predator to scare birds away.
Feelings of seeing such a big, heavy and powerful plane ascending are indescribable!
Ilyushin-78 is the only plane of the air forces of Russia which can refuel other planes in the air.
It’s amazing that such a gigantic thing can fly! Moreover, it can carry up to 90 tons of load!
And the highlight of the show is Tu-160! This is a supersonic bomber rocket carrier.
Maximum speed: 2230 km/h.
Cruising speed: 917 km/h.
Maximum flight range without refuelling: 13950 km.
Operational ceiling: 15000 kilometers.
Rate of climb: 4400 meters a minute.
The plane has 4 engines with a total 100000 hp!
Russian pilots call it ‘white swan’ for its beauty and gracefulness. Americans call it ‘black knave’ for its invulnerability.
Each piece costs 7.5 billion rubles (250 million dollars). They have produced 35 of them since 1984.
Tu-160 is the the largest supersonic plane and variable geometry wing plane. It is the most powerfuland the heaviest military aircraft in the world. It has the biggest take-off mass and weapons load.
The local cafeteria. Each lunch will cost you approximately 110 rubles (30 dollars).
Museum of Aviation.
Closer to the evening, first aircrafts become arriving at the base.
Its take-off mass is comparable to the mass of 9 trolleys 71-619KT!
Over 30 specialists of the technical crew work on preparation of the aircraft for another flight.
When these aircrafts fly in the neutral territory, they are accompanied by fighter interceptors of NATO. In case they come too close which happens sometimes, Russian swans gather up their supersonic speed and fly away, leaving NATO planes behind.
These are two pictures of the air pageant in Moscow.