The Tu-95 is in many respects an unlikely aircraft. It is an heavy bomber
with a slender fuselage, swept wings, and four extremily powerful turboprop
engines driving contrarotating propellers -- more than enough for the West not
to take it serious at first. But more than 30 years after its first appearance,
it was still in production as a marimitime patrol aircraft and cruise missile
carrier. Air force designation was Tu-20, but "95" project index
preserved to save lots of paper. Never sold to foreign countries.
The govermental order dated July 1951. Draft project - September 1951. First
"95-1" built - 20-Sep-1951. First flown 12-Nov-1951. Four TV-12
|"95-1" - proto - Range 14200km. Speed 890km/h max. Altitude
13500m max. Max take-off mass 156t.
|Tu-95 proto [Type-40] - service designation Tu-20; later the NATO
Reporting Name 'Bear' was assigned; first seen 1955 Soviet Aviation Day,
Bear-A - Original 'Bear-A' was a free-fall bomber and carries only small
radar under nose. Four 14795hp Kuznetsov NK-12M. Range 13200km. Speed
905km/h max, 750km/h cruising. Max alt 11900m. Max take-off mass 182t.
|Tu-95 Bear-B - has the 'Top Crown' radar under nose and refueling probe in
front of cocpit
|Tu-95 Bear-C - a dual recco and bomber version. Differs from 'Bear-B' by
having blisters on both sides of the rear fuslage. Capable to carry AS-3
'Kangaroo' under belly.
|Tu-95 Bear-D - equipped with 'Mushroom' chin radar and the enormous 'Big
Buldge' under the belly is a general purpose maritime version.
|Tu-95 Bear-E - maritime recco version similar to "Bear-A' but has
refueling probe, rear blister fairings and cameras in the veapon bay.
|Tu-95 Bear-F - an anti-submarine version with smalled under-belly radar
than one of 'Bear-D'. It also features extended forward fuselage and MAD
projection from the tailfin.
|Tu-95K Bear-G - looks like 'Bear-B/C' but subsonic 'Kangaroo' is replaced
by supersonic air-surface AS-4 'Kitchen'.
Bear-H - the new-build cruise missile (AS-X-15) carrier. It has radar
similar to the 'Top Crown' of the 'Bear-B/C'. 1985.
«Independant Military Review», No14, 1997
- Strategic missile carrier. Tu-95MS is intended to
strike with nuclear and conventional missiles against the most important
targets at remote regions and in the depth of continental operational
Developed by Aviation Science and Technology Complex (ANTK) named after
Produced by Samara Aviation Production Union (APO). First a/c were
assembled at Taganrog machinery plant.
Tu-95MS is a freely carrying arrow-wing middle-winger. Four NK-12MP
turbofans (two engines redundancy). Aerial refuelling system. Max
take-off weight: 185t. Max combat load: 20t (normal: 9t). Fuel: 84t.
Practical range at normal load: 10,500km (6,500km at max load). Max
speed at high altitude: 830km/h (550km/h at ground level). Practical
ceiling: 12,000m. Dimensions: length 49.6m, heigth 13.3m, wing span
50.05m. Crew of 7. Crew comfort significantly improved as compared to
previous versions. "All conditions" operations.
Tu-95MS can carry 6 cruise missiles X-55
(rotary launch unit) in the bay. There were versions for 6 and 16
missiles (extra 10 missiles under the wings), but they were converted to
6-missiles Tu-95MS under «SAL-2 treatment».
Self-defense weapon consists of rear firing 23mm twin gun and ECM
system. Targeting radar is capable to search, track, and fire against
enemy fighters in the rear semisphere automatically.
Tu-95MS is the last version of Tu-95 bomber (first flown in
12-Nov-1952). Experimental missile carrier was built in Sep-1979. Serial
production - since 1981 to early 1990s. First Tu-95MS entered service in
1982. USSR had 84 Tu-95MS to 1991 (mostly in Ukraine and Kazakhstan).
Some sources report 65 Tu-95MS in Russian VVS today. 21 Tu-95MS left in
Ukraine. Obsolete Tu-95K and Tu-95K-22 are now dismounted.
Tu - 95 Bear Album Pics