Tu-95 Bear Strategic Bomber Aircraft

Tu-95MS Strategic Bomber

Tupolev Tu-95MS (Nato code name: Bear-H) is a four-engine, long-range, turboprop, strategic bomber / missile carrier developed by Russian aerospace and defence company JSC Tupolev Design Bureau. The carrier is currently in service with the Russian Air Force.

Based on the airframe of Tu-142 (Bear F) maritime patrol aircraft, the Tu-95MS aircraft is a modernised version of the Tu-95 Bear strategic bomber. It is equipped with stand-off cruise missiles and can be deployed in combat missions to defeat cruise missiles and strategic enemy targets.

The Russian Defence Ministry intends to procure 20 modernised bombers by the end of 2016. The aircraft are expected to remain in service with them until 2040.

Tu-95MS strategic bomber combat aircraft orders and deliveries

A Tu-95MS prototype made first flight in September 1979. Serial production of the bomber was carried out at Kuibyshev Aircraft Works (now OJSC Aviakor Aviation Plant) in Samara between 1981 and 1992. The aircraft have been deployed by the 121st Heavy Bomber Regiment at Engels Air Base and the 73rd Heavy Bomber Aviation Division at Ukrainka Air Base.


Tu-95MS/Tu-95MS6/Tu-95MS16: Completely new cruise missile carrier platform based on the Tu-142 airframe. This variant became the launch platform of the Raduga Kh-55 cruise missile and put into serial production in 1981. Known to NATO as the Bear H and was referred to by the U.S. military as a Tu-142 for some time in the 1980s before its true designation became known.

  • Tu-95MS6: Capable of carrying six Kh-55, Kh-55SM or Kh-555 cruise missiles on a rotary launcher in the aircraft’s weapons bay. 32 built.
  • Tu-95MS16: Fitted with four underwing pylons in addition to the rotary launcher in the fuselage, giving a maximum load of 16 Kh-55s or 14 Kh-55SMs. 56 built.
  • Tu-95MSM: modernized version of MS16 with advanced radio-radar equipment as well as a target-acquiring/navigation system based on GLONASS. Four underwing pylons for up to 8 Kh-101/102 stealth cruise missiles. Eleven aircraft have been modernized as of mid-2016 and seven more will follow.

Source @wikipedia.org 

In December 2014, Tupolev handed over two upgraded Tu-95MS strategic bombers with improved avionics and flying efficiency to the Russian Air Force, as part of the state defence order. A further delivery of upgraded Tu-95MS was made in January 2015.

Flight tests

Two Tu-95MS aircraft performed a 17-hour patrol flight over the Aleutian Islands in May 2011. It was followed by a 10h air patrol flight over the Pacific Ocean in November 2011. Two Tu-95MS strategic bombers also performed a patrol flight over the Arctic Ocean for 20h in April 2012. Another patrol flight, which lasted 13h, was executed over the Norwegian Sea in November 2013.

The Tu-95MS successfully launched six high-precision cruise missiles at ground targets during a tactical flight test that lasted 7h in June 2014.

Design and features of Tu-95MS strategic bomber

Tu-95-Bear-RAF.jpgImage @theaviationist.com

The Tu-95MS strategic bomber features high-aspect ratio spar wing design and an improved, all-metal airframe. It is capable of engaging major stationary enemy targets under extreme weather conditions both during day and at night.

The aircraft is 49.6m-long and 13.3m-high, and is equipped with semi-monocoque fuselage and a retractable tricycle landing gear consisting of steerable twin-wheel nose unit and four-wheeled main units. Its maximum take-off and landing weights are 185t and 135t respectively and its maximum payload capacity is 20,000kg. The wings are swept back at 35° and the wing span is 50.05m.

The cabin in the front section of the fuselage accommodates a crew of seven, including a pilot and a co-pilot.


The Tu-95MS Bear-H aircraft is armed with two Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23 twin-barrelled, 23mm automatic cannons at the rear for self-defence against airborne threats. Each cannon has a rate of fire of 2,400 rounds a minute. Six 2,500km-range Kh-15 air-launched cruise missiles are carried in the drum launcher.

Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23 twin-barrelled

gsh23-bigImage @sovietbases.thecelotajs.com
The Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23 “ГШ-23” is a twin-barreled 23mm autocannon developed in the Soviet Union, primarily for military aircraft use. It entered service in 1965, replacing the earlier Nudelman-Rikhter NR-23 cannon.
The GSh-23 works on the Gast Gun principle developed by German engineer Karl Gast of the Vorwerk company in 1916. It is a twin-barreled weapon in which the firing action of one barrel operates the mechanism of the other. It provides a much faster rate of fire for lower mechanical wear than a single-barrel weapon, although it cannot match the rate of fire of an electric Gatling gun like the M61 Vulcan. The Gast principle has been little used in the West, but was popular in the former Soviet Union on a variety of weapons.
The cannon comes in a basic GSh-23 variant, and the more popular GSh-23L “ГШ-23Л”, differing mostly in adding a muzzle brake, lowering recoil force. This cannon was standard fit on late-model MiG-21 fighters “M, SM, MF, SMT, bis”, all variants of the MiG-23, the SOKO J-22 Orao, the HAL Tejas and IAR 93, and the tail turrets of the Tupolev Tu-22M bomber and some late-model Tu-95s. In that application, it had the unusual ability to fire infrared flares and chaff rounds, allowing it to function as both a weapon and a dispenser of anti-missile countermeasures. It is also mounted on late small series Mi-24VP helicopters in the “NPPU-23 movable mounting” and Polish W-3WA Sokół helicopter in fixed mounting. The cannon was also used on cargo aircraft; specifically, Russian/Soviet Ilyushin Il-76 aircraft were designed to accommodate twin Gsh-23L’s in a tail turret. An Il-76M with just such a configuration could be seen at the 2002 Ivanovo air show.
tu-95ms_bear_15_of_51These pictures were taken and shared with the web by Yuri Pasholok –  Image @primeportal.net



Even the fast KSR-5 left something to be desired. Storable rocket propellants are corrosive and highly toxic, making them difficult to handle, and the KSR-5’s range and capability were inadequate. In the 1970s, the US Navy developed the Grumman F-14 Tomcat interceptor, which featured long-range Phoenix air-to-air missiles. The Tomcat / Phoenix combination, backed up by the Grumman E-2C Hawkeye carrier-based radar early warning aircraft, presented a clear threat to Soviet bombers operating in the anti-ship role. The Hawkeye could provide long-range “eyes” for the Tomcat, which had long range and endurance, allowing it to fire a Phoenix at a Soviet bomber long before the Red aircraft got within range of a carrier group. If the bomber did manage to take a shot with a cruise missile, the Phoenix might well shoot the missile down.

The Tomcat / Phoenix / Hawkeye threat led the Soviets to develop the low-level launch versions of the Kh-22 and KSR-5 missiles, and also to work on a missile that was much harder to intercept. The Soviets were impressed enough by the Boeing SRAM that Raduga developed an equivalent, the “Kh-15 (AS-16 Kickback)”, which has almost the same external appearance as the SRAM. It was the first Soviet large ASM with solid-fuel rocket propulsion.


The Kh-15 is a simple spike of a missile with three tailfins. The resemblance to SRAM is so close that it is tempting to refer to the Kh-15 as “SRAMski”. Unlike SRAM, however, as with the other large Soviet ASMs, the Kh-15 was designed for both strategic and anti-ship attack. There are three versions: the standard Kh-15 nuclear-armed strategic variant, with inertial guidance only; a conventionally-armed anti-ship variant, the “Kh-15A”, with an active radar terminal seeker; and an antiradar variant, the “Kh-15P”, with a passive radar seeker. An export version of the Kh-15A, the “Kh-15S”, was also built. After launch, the missile climbs to the edge of space and then dives on the target steeply at Mach 5, making it very hard to hit.


Raduga began work on the Kh-15 in the late 1960s and it was accepted for service in the early 1980s. A Tu-22M Backfire bomber can carry six Kh-15s in a revolver launcher in the weapons bay, plus four more under the wings. It is also carried by the Tupolev Tu-160 Blackjack bomber. Source @craymond.no-ip.info


Weight 1,200 kg (2,650 lb)
Length 478 cm (15 ft 8 in)
Diameter 45.5 cm (17.9 in)
Warhead conventional or nuclear
Warhead weight 150 kg (331 lb)
Blast yield 300 kt
Engine solid-fuel RDTT-160
Wingspan 92 cm (36.2 in) maximum


300 km (160 nmi)
Flight ceiling 40,000 m (130,000 ft)
Speed Up to Mach 5


inertial guidance, active radar homing, or anti-radiation missile


Su-33, Su-34, Tu-95MS-6, Tu-22M3, and Tu-160

Kh-15 specification @wikipedia.org

The Tu-95MS-6 variant can be equipped with six Raduga Kh-55 (AS-15) subsonic air-launched cruise missiles in a rotary launcher, whereas the Tu-95MS-16 variant can carry 16 Kh-55 missiles externally.

Raduga Kh-55 (AS-15) subsonic air-launched cruise missiles


The Kh-55 has pop-out wings and fins, and has an INS to get to the target area and terrain-following system for terminal attack. It differs visibly from the Tomahawk in that its entire R95-300 turbofan engine is extended out of the fuselage after launch, not just the air intake.


   _____________________   _________________   _______________________
   spec                    metric              english
   _____________________   _________________   _______________________

   wingspan                3 meters            10 feet
   length                  6 meters            19 feet 7 inches
   total weight            1,500 kilograms     3,300 pounds
   speed                   subsonic
   range                   2,500 kilometers    1,550 MI / 1,350 NMI
   _____________________   _________________   _______________________

Production of a stretched-range version, the “Kh-55SM”, began in 1986. The Kh-55SM, which has the NATO designation “AS-15B”, has TERCOM navigation like the ALCM’s, and has additional fuel tanks scabbed onto the sides, giving it an estimated range of 3,000 kilometers (1,860 miles). It is armed with a 200 kilotonne nuclear warhead.

AS-15 Kent B [Kh-55SM, 200kT Nuclear]


General data:  
Type: Guided Weapon Weight: 1700 kg
Length: 8.9 m Span: 3.1 m
Diameter: 0.77 Generation: None
Properties: Terrain Following, Weapon – TERCOM Navigation, Weapon – Pre-Briefed Target Only, Level Cruise Flight
Targets: Land Structure – Soft, Land Structure – Hardened, Runway, Mobile Target – Soft, Mobile Target – Hardened
AS-15 Kent B [Kh-55SM, 200kT Nuclear] – (1987, Tu-95MS-16) Guided Weapon
Land Max: 2963.2 km.

Source @cmano-db.com

Kh-55 series missiles are carried by Bear and Blackjack heavy bombers. The Bear can carry six in an internal rotary launcher. It can also carry more Kh-55s externally, though in an overload flight condition: two are carried on a stores attachment between the fuselage and inboard engine, and three are carried on a stores attachment between the two engines on each wing, for a total of ten missiles. Roughly 1,500 Kh-55s were built into the early 1990s.

* A naval version of the Kh-55SM designated “3K-10 Granat” (NATO codename “SS-N-21 Sampson”) was built in parallel. Sources hint that it was strictly submarine launched. There are sketchy reports of an experimental derivative of the 3K-10 named the “3M-55 (SS-N-27)” that is intended for the antiship role, and has a “warhead” that is actually a solid fuel missile that performs a terminal attack at Mach 2.5 speed.

There was also production of a limited batch of a ground-launched version for the Red Army, the “RK-55” (NATO codename “SSC-X-4 Slingshot”) that was comparable to the US GLCM, but the INF treaty that killed off the GLCM killed off the RK-55 as well.

Source @craymond.no-ip.info

1030406230Image @sputniknews.com

The aircraft can be further modified to carry up to eight Kh-101 air-launched cruise missiles or 14 Kh-65 anti-ship missiles.

Kh-101 air-launched cruise missile


The Kh-101 is an advanced cruise missile under development to eventually replace the Kh-55 missile onboard the Soviet/Russian strategic bombers such as Tu-160 and Tu-95. The Kh-101 has a 400-kg conventional warhead, stealth features, high subsonic speed and low altitude flight profile. The conventionally-armed Kh-101 has also been referred to as the Russian counterpart to the United States Air Force AGM-129 air launched cruise missile.


The Kh-101 has a highly accurate navigation system based on the GLONASS satellite navigation system and a highly accurate Inertial Navigation System (INS) as backup with a terminal TV-based seeker for precision-attack missions. The Kh-101 development has been strongly influenced by the successes of US military campaigns in the late 1990s and the emerging role of standoff weapons in modern conflicts. Up to eight (Tu-95) or up to 12 (Tu-160) of these missiles can be carried by a single Russian heavyweight bomber.

The Kh-101 and Kh-102 air launched cruise missile are supposed to be members of the same family of missiles sharing components and overall performance. The main difference between them is their warhead. As of 2006, the Kh-101 was near ready for deployment. Unconfirmed reports suggest that the missile entered service in early 2012 or later in 2013/2014.



CEP: 6 meter

Max Cruising Flight Altitude: 10,000 meter

Max Range: 5,500 kilometer (2,970 nautical mile)

Min Cruising Flight Altitude: 30 meter


Cruise Speed: 972 kph (0.81 mach)

Top Speed: 1,236 kph (1.03 mach)


Warhead: 400 kilogram

Weight: 2,400 kilogram

Source @deagel.com

Kh-65 anti-ship missile


The Kh-65SE is a derivative of Kh-65 cruise missile intended as a long range, aircraft-launched anti-ship missile. It features an active radar seeker added to the Kh-55/65 navigation system for the terminal phase of the flight engagement.

The Kh-65SE has been designed to perform as a sea-skimming anti-ship missile with terminal active radar homing.



Diameter: 510 millimeter

Length: 6.04 meter (19.8 foot)

Wingspan: 3.10 meter


CEP: 150 meter

Max Range: 280 kilometer (151 nautical mile)


Top Speed: 256 mps (922 kph)


Warhead: 450 kilogram (992 pound)

Weight: 1,250 kilogram

Source @deagel.com


The modernization of the strategic bombers of the Russian Air Force, is being carried out, in slow tempo though, with airplanes like the Tu-95MS and the Tu-160. Until 2015 the Air Force plans on upgrading up to 159 bombers (including the Tu-22M3). The initial work of upgrading the Tu-95MS started in 1992, with the main objective of setting up the new rocket systemSigma”.

In the fall of 1999, the first modernized Tu-95MSM was delivered. Along with the modernization of the aircrafts, work is being done on expanding their “service life” up to 30 years.

The upgraded bombers scheduled to remain in service until 2025

The modernization program (to “MSM” level) concerns:



Tu_95ms_6.pngTu-95-MS-6. © Konstantinos Panitsidis – Image @redstar.gr

The version Tu-95 MS-6 was modified to carry missiles internally and 4 more missiles on external carriers (31 aircrafts were made)and cannot be upgraded to MSM level.


Tu_95ms_16.pngTu-95-MS-16. © Konstantinos Panitsidis – Image @redstar.gr

The Tu-95MS-16 with increased portability of missiles on external carriers up to 10 Χ-55 missiles, (with the “Sprut” missile system), and also is equipped with the new Gsh-23L gun. The cockpit was redesigned to provide for better visibility to the crew. (overall 57 aircrafts were made).


Source @redstar.gr


Avionics onboard the Tu-95MS Bear-H aircraft

View_from_the_cockpit_of_a_Tupolev_Tu-95MS_on_finals_into_Ryazan_Dyagilevo_Air_Base.jpgCockpit – Image @wikimedia.org06c4edb1946d6cc5c6d71ad533096097.jpgTU-95MS engineer panel640px-Cockpit_of_Tupolev_Tu-95MS_(7) (1)Tu-95MS strategic bomber, navigator panel – Image @wikimedia.org

The strategic bomber is installed with ANS-2009 celestial navigation system, developed by Concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET), to determine the plane’s coordinates. The onboard new-generation BINS-SP-2M strapdown inertial navigation system, also developed by KRET, determines location of objects and provides navigation and flight data in the absence of satellite navigation.


ANS-2009 celestial navigation system

The ANS-2009 celestial navigation system, developed by KRET, accurately determines an aircraft’s coordinates based on the position of the stars.

“This is the most reliable method during combat when navigation satellite systems are disabled by the enemy,” said Vladimir Mikheev, Advisor to the First Deputy of KRET, as quoted by TASS. “ANS-2009 can be installed on a plane along with the strapdown inertial navigation systems and does not require external guidance or signals.”

The device is designed for long-range Russian aircraft and is currently used by three types of aircraft, the Tu-95MS, Tu-22M3, and Tu-160, which will be updated to meet the needs of the Air Force. As Air Force Commander Viktor Bondarev noted earlier, the military plans to buy at least 50 of these aircraft.

It is expected that, in 2019 or 2020, the new long-range strategic bomber PAK DA will take to the skies. According to Vladimir Mikheev, the achievements obtained in creating the ANS-2009 will be implemented on the PAK DA. Source @kret.com

BINS-SP2 strapdown inertial navigation system

BINS-SP2 strapdown inertial navigation system, allows the fighters to navigate even in the absence of satellite, land-based, or offshore navigation systems. Source @kret.com

The BINS-SP2 architecture is based on three laser gyroscopes and three quartz accelerometers. The system can establish the platform’s coordinates and motion variables in the absence of external data inputs.

The system was developed by Moscow Institute of Electromechanics and Automatics, a subsidiary of Radioelectronic Technologies. General director Alexey Kuznetsov says the BINS-SP2 can operate at temperatures between –60° and +60° C, and at altitudes up to 25 km.

Anatoly Chumakov, general director of the BINS-SP2 manufacturer Ramenskoye Instrument Making Plant, predicts great demand for the system from military and civilian customers. Three examples per airframe could be installed on civilian aircraft, and two per airframe on warplanes. The system has a service life of 10,000 hours. It can also be used on sea vessels and road transport.  Source @ato.ru

The aircraft is also fitted with Leninetz Obzor-MS clam pipe navigation and attack pulse-doppler radar, and Mak-UT missile approach warning system infrared (MAWS). It can be upgraded with new equipment for improved reliability.

Leninetz Obzor-MS clam pipe navigation and attack pulse-doppler radar

000-Tu-95MS-Obzor-1S.jpgImage @ausairpower.net
General data:  
Type: Radar Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 333.4 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0.6 km Generation: Early 1980s
Properties: Pulse-only Radar
Sensors / EW:
Clam Pipe [Obzor-MS] – (Tu-95MS) Radar
Role: Radar, FCR, Air-to-Surface, Long-Range
Max Range: 333.4 km

Source @cmano-db.com

Obzor-MS is a long range pulse-doppler air-to-surface radar, fitted to the Tu-95MS. It lacks a terrain following mode, due to the Tu-95’s inability to fly low-level missions. Uses DBS (Doppler Beam Sharpening) for improved resolution mapping.

Obzor-K is an updated version of Obzor designed for the Tu-160 (Aircraft K). Linked to Sopka TFR. Range is around 300km.

A modernised Obzor radar is being developed for upgrading remaining Tu-160 and some Tu-95MS with LPI (Low Probability of Interception) and SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) modes. Source @aerospace.boopidoo.com

Mak-UT missile approach warning system infrared (MAWS)

Azovskiy-MAK-UL-Tu-95MS6-MiroslavGyurosi-2S.jpgImage @ausairpower.nettu-95ms_bear_49_of_51.jpgThese pictures were taken and shared with the web by Yuri Pasholok – Image @primeportal.net
General data:  
Type: Infrared Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 9.3 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0 km Generation: Early 1980s
Properties: Continous Tracking Capability [Visual]
Sensors / EW:
L-082 Mak-UT – (Tu-95MS) Infrared
Role: MAWS, Missile Approach Warning System
Max Range: 9.3 km

Source @cmano-db.com


General data:  
Type: Radar Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 18.5 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0.2 km Generation: Late 1970s
Properties: Pulse-only Radar
Sensors / EW:
Box Tail [PRS-4 Krypton] – Radar
Role: TWR, Tail Warning Radar & Tail Gun Director
Max Range: 18.5 km

Source @cmano-db.com

General data:  
Type: Visual Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 185.2 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0 km Generation: Visual, 2nd Generation TV Camera (1980s/1990s, AXX-1 TCS)
Properties: Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) [Side Info], Classification [Class Info] / Brilliant Weapon [Automatic Target Aquisition], Continous Tracking Capability [Visual]
Sensors / EW:
Generic Tail Gun Director [TV Camera] – (2nd Gen) Visual
Role: Visual, Weapon Director TV Camera
Max Range: 185.2 km

Source @cmano-db.com


The SPS-160 Geran series jammer aboard the Tu-95MS bomber provides self-defence from guided missiles. The bomber’s aerodynamic design allows it to fly at high-speed at a safe altitude. Two large fairings are fitted on the wings to reduce the drag.

SPS-160 Geran series jammer

General data:  
Type: ECM Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 0 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0 km Generation: Early 1980s
Sensors / EW:
SPS-160 Geran – (Tu-95MS) ECM
Role: DECM, Defensive ECM
Max Range: 0 km

Source @cmano-db.com

An electric defrost system is installed protect the canopy, tail propeller blades, pilots and leading edges of the wings. The onboard electronic countermeasures (ECM) also include Meteor-NM computer-controlled ECM system, APP-50 chaff / flare dispensers and Avtomatika SPO-32 / L150 digital warning receiver.

Meteor-NM computer-controlled ECM system

Computer controlled ECM system fitted to Tu-95MS, linking Pastel RWR, Geran series jammer, Mak MAWS, APP-50 chaff/flare dispensers.

APP-50 chaff / flare dispensers


The APP-50 passive jamming automatic units (decoy dispensers) are designed to protect aircraft from engagement in flight by airborne missile systems and air defence missile/artillery systems by dispensing radar/IR interference rounds. The dispensers are installed onboard aircraft, and can be controlled manually (from the control panel) or automatically. The APP-50 dispensers can be delivered in two variants: APP-50P for autonomous operation; APP-50A for integration into onboard electronic support systems. The dispenser can launch rounds (up to three types) in continuous, salvo, combined and emergency modes. Launch time intervals, number of salvos and number of rounds in one salvo (from 1 to 4) are set by operator or by the electronic support system.

Developer and manufacturer: Gorizont JSC


Launch altitude envelope, m 0 – 30, 000
Launch time intervals, sec 0,1 – 8,0
Round types PRP-50, PPI-50
Caliber, mm 50
Number of rounds 24
Dispenser weight (loaded), kg 53 – 56,5
Launch modes Continuous, salvo, by series

Source @ktrv.ru

Avtomatika SPO-32 / L150 digital warning receiver


The PRGS-L-150 system is designed to detect enemy radars and warn crews of their illumination and operation in the weapon guidance mode, as well as designate them to own anti-radiation missiles and control operation of their anti-radar homing heads.

The system is able to:

– Identify enemy radar operating modes: search, tracking, guidance;

– Classify radar/weapon system types, threat priority;

– Prioritize target threats;

– Select two (out of six possible) anti-radar homing heads of its own anti-radiation missiles, link them up by pairs to ensure control, target designation, and retargeting of one or two homing heads simultaneously against one radar target on pilot commands;

– Designate to a homer the pre-programmed radar targets with known geographical coordinates and known or unknown radiation parameters;

– Designate to a homer the pre-programmed radar targets with known geographical coordinates of the combat area centre and its radius with known or unknown radiation parameters;

– Designate to a homer radar targets of opportunity;

– Present visual data on the radar field for the crew to take appropriate countermeasures;

– Warn the crew with sound alarm to take required protection measures.

Developer and manufacturer: Omsk plant “Automatika”


Surveillance sector, ang.deg.:

in azimuth

in elevation

0 – 360

(+;-) 30

Operating frequency band, GHz 1,2 – 18
Number of radar types

programmed operatively (data bank)

128 +
Number of missiles guided simultaneously 2
Missile search sector, ang.deg. (+;-) 30
Weight, kg. 52,44

Source @ktrv.ru

General data:  
Type: ESM Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 222.2 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0 km Generation: Early 2000s
Sensors / EW:
SPO-32 Pastel [L-150] – ESM
Role: RWR, Radar Warning Receiver
Max Range: 222.2 km

Source @cmano-db.com

Propulsion and fuelling

The Tu-95MS combat aircraft is powered by four NK-12MP turboprop engines, driving one eight-bladed, counter-rotating AV-60N auto-feathering propeller each. Manufactured by Kuznetsov Design Bureau, the engine has a take-off power of 15,000bhp and a pressure ratio of 9.7.

NK-12MP (NK-12MA) turboprop engine


The NK-12M developed 8,948 kW (12,000 ehp), uprated in the NK-12MV to 11,033 kW (14,795 ehp) and reaching 11,185 kW (15,000 ehp) in the NK-12MA. The NK-12 remains the most powerful turboprop engine ever built. Only recently the Progress D-27 and Europrop TP400 came somewhat close. It powered the Tupolev Tu-95 bomber and its descendants like the Tu-142 maritime patrol aircraft and the Tupolev Tu-114 airliner (with NK-12MV), which is still the world’s fastest propeller-driven aircraft. It also powered the Antonov An-22 Antei (with NK-12MA), the world’s largest aircraft at the time, and several types of amphibious assault craft, such as the A-90 Orlyonok “Ekranoplan” and the Zubr class LCAC.

tu-95ms_bear_06_of_51.jpgThese pictures were taken and shared with the web by Yuri Pasholok –  Image @primeportal.net

The engine has a 14-stage axial-flow compressor, producing compression ratios between 9:1 to 13:1 depending on altitude, also controlled by variable inlet guide vanes and blow-off valves. The combustion system used is a cannular-type: each flame tube is centrally mounted on a down-stream injector that ends in an annular secondary region. The contra-rotating propellers and compressor are driven by the 5-stage axial turbine. Mass flow is 65 kg (143 lb) per second.



General characteristics

  • Type: Turboprop
  • Length: 4.8m
  • Diameter: 1.2m
  • Dry weight: 2,900kg (6393 lbs), for NK-12MV


  • Compressor: Axial flow, 14 stages
  • Turbine: 5 stages


  • Maximum power output: 11,033 kW (14,795 ehp), for NK-12MV
  • Overall pressure ratio: 9.5
  • Turbine inlet temperature: 1250K
  • Specific fuel consumption: 0.360 lb/shp-hr  0.219 kg/kW-hr for NK-12MA and NK-12MV
  • Power-to-weight ratio: 3.7 kW/kg (2.3 hp/lb), for NK-12MV

Source @wikipedia.org

Internal fuel capacity of the aircraft is 84t. Fuel is stored in four tanks integrated in the outer wings, two centre wing tanks, and in the central fuselage tank. An air-to-air refuelling probe is fixed on the nose.

Tu-95MS bomber performance

sts_tu-95ms_01_1200.jpgImage @airforce.ru

The engines provide a maximum speed of 830km/h, a cruise speed of 550km/h and a flight range of 10,500km. The range can be extended up to 14,100km with one flight refuelling. Take-off and landing rolls of the bomber are 2,540m and 1,700m respectively, and the service ceiling is 10,500m.

BTU95_vl.jpgImage @combataircraft.com


TYPE Strategical Bomber
POWER-PLANT Four turboprop engine ΝΚ-12ΜP
Power, h.p. 4 x 15.000
Length, m 47,09
Height, m 13,20
Wing span, m 50,05
Wing area, m2 295
Empty aircraft, kg 94.400
Maximum take-off, kg 187.700
Internal fuel, kg 87.000
Maximum speed, km/h 830
Cruising speed, km/h 710
Range, km 10.500
Combat range, km 6.500
Service ceiling, m 12.000
ARMAMENT 2×23-mm cannons GSh-23 or GSh-23L

Warload-normal 9.000 kg , maximum – 20.000 kg , overload-25.000 kg :

Drum launcher for 6 cruise missiles Kh-55

on Tu-95MS-6 plus 4 x Kh-55 in underwings hardpoints), on Tu-95MS-16 plus 10 x Kh-55 / 8 x X-101/102 (Kh-101/102) in 4 underwings hardpoints) free fall,  cluster and nuclear bombs.

Technical data @redstar.gr

164223.gifImage @airforceworld.com

Main material source @airforce-technology.com

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