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Tupolev Tu-88 / Tu-16

Tu-16 Badger D

The prototype flown under OKB designation Tu-88 on 27 April 1952 was overweight and Andrei Tupolev delayed production until a second prototype flew in 1953 with uprated AM-3A turbojets and 5,500kg weight reduction. The maximum speed increased to 992km/h at a cost. The maximum IAS of only 700km/h at low altitude was achieved instead of the originally required M0.9

Deliveries began in 1954 and nine Tu-16 took part in the May Day 1954 flypast over Moscow, and 54 in the Aviation Day flypast 1955.

The Tu-88 entered service service in 1954/55 as the Tu-16 series in for a number of missile-carrier and reconnaissance roles. NATO code name ‘Badger’, the Tu‑16 was notable in having only two engines, mounted on the sides of the fuselage inside the roots of the swept wing. The mid-set wings, sweptback at 40 deg 30 sec on the inner sections and at 37 deg 30 sec on the outer panels, and with slight anhedral. Bogie main landing gears fold backwards into compartments in streamlined fairings on the trailing edge.




By the 1960s at least 2,000 aircraft in this family had been delivered and 11 main versions have been identified for use as bom-bers, missile carriers, anti-ship attack aircraft, reconnaissance aircraft and EW/ECM platforms. The Long-Range Aviation force had almost 600 still in service in 1984, while the AV-MF (Naval Avia-tion) still used some 300. There have been many updates of systems and equipment, and the EW/ECM versions are all rebuilds of free-fall bombers.

The first (“Badger A”) version had blind-bombing radar and glazed nose, and a few were supplied to Egypt and Iraq. The 'Badger-A’ pioneered inflight -refuelling using a looped hose be-tween wingtips. The B carried two “Kennel” cruise missiles on underwing pylons and served the AV-MF (Navy) and Indonesian AF. C carried the large Kipper” stand-off missile on the centreline, with panoramic’ nose radar for ship search and missile guidance. D is a maritime reconnaissance type, with comprehensive radars and ECM. E is a photo and multi-sensor reconnaissance type, F is an E with major new ECM and ESM installations, and G is an updated B which launched many missiles against Israel in 1973.


Total production exceeded 2,000, and production (without Soviet aid) continued in China in the 1980s as the Xian H-6.



Armament: in most variants, six 23 mm NFI-23 cannon in radar-directed manned tail turret and remote-aimed upper dorsal and rear ventral barbettes; versions without nose radar usually have seventh NR-23 fixed firing ahead on right side of nose. Internal weapon bay for load of 19,800 lb (9000 kg), with certain versions equipped to launch missiles. Payload: 8377 lb (3800 kg) bombs or 2 stand-off missiles.



Operated with SovAir in strategic bombing role (Badger-A and -B), and with SovNavAir in ELINT, ECM, photographic and electronic recce, and anti-shipping roles (Badger-C to -H, Badger-J- to -K).

Engines: 2 x AM-3M, 19,290 lb (8750 kgp) thrust
Wingspan: 111 ft 6 in
Length: 118 ft
Height: 35 ft 6 in
Wing area: 1820 sq.ft
MTOW: 175,000 lb approx.
Fuel capacity: 10,000 gal approx
Max speed, clean at 35,000 ft: 587 mph (945 km/h)
Initial climb, clean, about 4,100 ft (1250 m)/min
Service ceiling 42,650 ft (13,000 m)
Range with maximum weapon load, no missiles: 3,000 miles (4,800 km)
Extreme reconnaissance range, about 4,500 miles (7250 km)
Armament: 4 x 23mm guns

Bombload: 10,000 lb approx.

Type: multi-role bomber/ reconnaissance/ECM aircraft
Crew: 6
Engine: two 9500-kg (20,943-lb) thrust Mikulin RD-3M turbojets
Max speed: 1000 km/h (621 mph) at 6000 m (19,685 ft)
Service ceiling: about 14000 m (45,930 ft)
Range with 3790-kg (8,355-lb) bombload: 4800 km (2985 miles)
Empty wt: 37200 kg (82,010 lb)
MTOW: 72000 kg (158,730 lb)
Wing span: 32.93 m (108 ft 0.5 in)
Length: 34.80 m (114 ft 2 in)
Height: 10.80 m (35 ft 6 in)
Wing area: 164.65 sq.m (1,772.3 sq ft)
Armament: three power turrets each armed with two 23-mm cannon, and usually one 23-mm cannon fixed firing ahead
Internal bombload: 9000 kg (19,841 lb)

Engines: 2 x AM-3M, 93.1kN
Max take-off weight: 72000-79000 kg / 158734 - 174166 lb
Empty weight: 37200 kg / 82012 lb
Wingspan: 32.9 m / 108 ft 11 in
Length: 34.8 m / 114 ft 2 in
Height: 10.9 m / 36 ft 9 in
Wing area: 164.7 sq.m / 1772.81 sq ft
Max. speed: 1050 km/h / 652 mph
Cruise speed: 850 km/h / 528 mph
Ceiling: 13000 m / 42650 ft
Range: 5800 km / 3604 miles
Range w/max.fuel: 7200 km / 4474 miles
Crew: 6
Armament: 7 x 23mm cannons
Bombload: 3000-9000kg

Tupolev Tu-16




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