These TU-128 planes are pretty rare. In the 1970s, only ten planes were produced and this is probably the only one that survived. It was found at the plane repair plant in Rzhevsk, Russia. They were used to train Soviet border guard interceptor pilots, and what made them particularly unique is that the instructor pilot’s cockpit is on top of the plane.
On the normal TU interceptors of that time the instructor’s dome was absent and the radar was there, but those ten planes had no additional radars there but had an instructors cockpit, which had glass windows and an emergency escape chair.
Basically, the TU company was known for making long range bomber planes that could carry nuclear bombs, but these are TU interceptors, which are pretty rare – usually interceptors were MiGs or SUs.
Because of its weird appearance this plane was called “A Pelican” by the pilots.
Place to mount bombs or missiles.
Locals say that one day they wanted to set it up as a monument in the city square, but it couldn’t fit through the factory’s front gate – that’s where they got those scratches from.
Some vandals broke its wing.
Even though it was called “A Pelican” they still found it to be a nice looking plane.
And this is another plane that probably went through the factory gates fine and became a monument in a square. It’s a SU-15 jet.
SU-15 interceptor jets are connected to one sad accident in 1983. At that time, a Russian pilot, Genadiy Osipovich, had shot down a Korean Boeing 747 which went deep inside the Soviet territory and wasn’t responding to radio messages.
Same city, Rzhevsk, has one more monument – a MiG-17 plane.
Big thanks to Marina, a plane photographer enthusiast, for her effort and photos!