Russia Launches Production of Modernized Tu-160 Blackjack Supersonic Bomber

By Prei Dy, | June 07, 2017

Russia resume production of the upgraded version of Tu-160 called the Tupolev Tu-160M2. (YouTube)

Russia resume production of the upgraded version of Tu-160 called the Tupolev Tu-160M2. (YouTube)

Russia will continue the production of the upgraded version of the Tu-160 strategic bomber, called the Tupolev Tu-160M2 (NATO reporting name: Blackjack).

"A great deal of preparatory work has been done and unique technological methods of producing titanium alloy parts have been restored," Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said, adding that major components have already been built.

Like Us on Facebook

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree last February to restart the Tu-160 bomber production line at the Tupolev aircraft factory in Kazan and design a new generation strategic bomber.

All Tu-160 bombers currently in service with Russia's Aerospace Forces will be modernized pending the delivery of the new generation Tu-160MS2 version, Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov said in April.

"All 16 Tu-160 planes in service will undergo a 100-percent, deep, modernization..." Borisov said.

The Tu-160MS2 will bear a resemblance to its predecessor. But Vladimir Popov, deputy editor-in-chief of Aviapanorama journal, said that it will be "a whole new aircraft," featuring a new fire control gear, advance system of electronic jamming, a new cockpit, and cost-efficient engines.

"Everything possible is being done to extend its supersonic ability," Popov said. "This is the bottom line of the current overhaul."

The Tu-160MS2 will feature modernized engines with better endurance characteristics that will increase the bomber's range by 1,000 kilometers compared with its predecessor. Its improved performance allows the plane to cruise at an altitude of 19.3 kilometers (60,000 feet) in stratosphere, which is beyond the enemy's reach.

The new Tu-160MS2 will be replacing one of Moscow's most formidable weapons, the Tu-160. It is a supersonic variable-sweep wing heavy strategic bomber or missile carrier. It is designed to engage targets with nuclear and conventional weapons.  The Tu-160, as well as the Tu-22M3, planes have been used in Russia's campaign against terrorists in Syria.

©2019 Telegiz All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission
Real Time Analytics