PlaneSpottingWorld welcomes all new members! Please gives your ideas at the Terminal.

Tupolev Tu-16

From PlaneSpottingWorld, for aviation fans everywhere
Tu-16R "Badger-E"
Type Bomber
Manufacturer Tupolev
Maiden flight 27 April 1952
Introduced 1954
Status Limited service
Primary users Soviet Air Force
Egyptian Air Force
Indonesian Air Force
Iraqi Air Force
Number built 1,509[1]
Variants Tupolev Tu-104
Tupolev Tu-124
Xian H-6

The Tupolev Tu-16 (NATO codename: Badger) was a twin-engine jet bomber used by the Soviet Union. It has flown for more than 50 years and, as the Xian H-6, remains in service with the Chinese air force.


Tu-16 bomber at the Monino Museum.

In the late 1940s the Soviet Union was strongly committed to matching the United States in strategic bombing capability. The Soviets' only long-range bomber at the time was Tupolev's Tu-4 'Bull', a reverse-engineered version of the American B-29 Superfortress. The development of the extremely powerful Mikulin AM-3 turbojet led to the possibility of a large, jet-powered bomber.

The Tupolev design bureau began work on the Tu-88 ("Aircraft N") prototypes in 1950. The Tu-88 first flew on 27 April 1952. After winning a competition against the Ilyushin Il-46, it was approved for production in December 1952. The first production bombers entered service with Frontal Aviation in 1954, receiving the service designation Tu-16. It received the NATO reporting name 'Badger-A'.

File:Tu-16 rear.jpg
Rearside view of a Tu-16 Badger reconnaissance variant (most likely Tu-16R).

It had a new, large swept wing and two massive Mikulin AM-3 turbojets, one in each wing root. It could carry a single massive FAB-9000 9,000-kg (19,800 lb) conventional bomb (the Russian equivalent of the British Grand Slam bomb) or various nuclear weapons to a range of around 4,800 km (3,000 mi).

Although the Tu-16 began as a high-altitude, free-fall bomber, in the mid-1950s it was equipped to carry early Soviet cruise missiles. The Tu-16KS-1 ('Badger-B') version could carry AS-1 'Kennel' missiles over a combat radius of 1,800 km (1,125 mi). These very large weapons were aerodynamically similar to the MiG-15 'Fagot' fighter, fitted with either a nuclear or conventional warhead, had a range of about 140 km (90 mi). They were intended for use primarily against US Navy aircraft carriers and other large surface ships. Subsequent Tu-16s were converted to carry later, more advanced missiles, while their designations changed several times.

File:Tu-16 Egyptian.jpg
Egyptian Tu-16s.

A versatile design, the Tu-16 was built in numerous specialized variants for reconnaissance, maritime surveillance, electronic intelligence gathering (ELINT), and electronic warfare (ECM). A total of 1507 aircraft was constructed in three plants in the Soviet Union, in 1954-1962. A civilian adaptation, the Tu-104 'Camel', saw passenger service with Aeroflot. The Tu-16 was also exported to Egypt, Indonesia, and Iraq. It continued to be used by the Air Forces and naval aviation of the Soviet Union and subsequently Russia until 1993.

Delivery of the Tu-16 to China began in 1958, and the Xi'an Aircraft Industrial Corporation (XAC) produces a copy of it under the Chinese designation Xian H-6. 120+ of these aircraft remain in service.


Template:Seealso Among the main production variants of the Badger were the Tu-16 and Tu-16A bombers; Tu-16KS and Tu-16K-10 missile carriers; Tu-16SPS, "Elka", and Tu-16Ye ECM aircraft; Tu-16R reconnaissance aircraft; and Tu-16T torpedo bomber; others were produced from conversions. Individual aircraft could be modified several times, with designations changed, especially concerning missile-carrying aircraft.

  • Badger A (Tu-16) - This the basic configuration of the Tu-16 bomber deployed in 1954 to replace the Tu-4. Several modified models of these variant existed, all of which were known as Badger A in the West.
    • Tu-16A - Modified Tu-16s designed to carry nuclear bombs, one of main versions, with 453 built. Many of those units were subsequently converted into other variants.
    • Tu-16Z - An early specialized version of the Tu-16 that served as airborne tankers (a refuelling method: wing-to-wing), though they retain their medium bomber role.
    • Tu-16G (Tu-104G) - Fast air mail model, Aeroflot aircrew training version.
    • Tu-16N - A dedicated tanker version for Tu-22/Tu-22M bombers, with probe and drogue system. Entered service in 1963. Similar aircraft Tu-16NN converted from Tu-16Z.
    • Tu-16T - Limited production maritime strike version (torpedo bomber), that served in the Soviet Naval Aviation, and carried torpedoes, mines and depth charges. 76 built and some more converted. All units subsequently converted into Tu-16S configuration.
    • Tu-16S - A lifeboat carrier version used for search and rescue operations.
    • Tu-16Ye - These were equipped with heavy electronic warfare and electronic intelligence (ELINT) equipment.
  • Badger B (Tu-16KS) - Variant designed as a launch platform for two AS-1 Kennel/KS-1 Komet missiles. 107 built in 1954-1958, served with the Soviet Naval Aviation, Egypt and Indonesia. Soviet ones later converted with newer missiles.
File:Tu-16badger 2.jpg
Tu-16K-10-26 Badger C
  • Badger C (Tu-16K-10) - Another Naval Aviation variant, units of this version carried a single AS-2 Kipper/K-10S anti-ship missile. 216 built in 1958-1963. It differed from other variants having a radar in a nose. A further development, the Tu-16K-10-26, carried a single K-10S and two KSR-2 or KSR-5 missiles (K-26 missile complex). Some were later converted into ELINT platforms.
  • Badger D (Tu-16RM-1) - Maritime reconnaissance model with ELINT equipment; 23 converted from Tu-16K-10. It retained its radar in a nose and could guide K-10S missiles, fired from other planes, at targets.
  • Badger E (Tu-16R) - Reconnaissance version of the airframe, with ELINT equipment, first of all meant for maritime reconnaissance. It could guide KS missiles.
    • Tu-16RM-2 - modified Tu-16R, serving in the Naval Aviation. It could guide KSR-2 missiles.
    • Tu-16KRM - Launch platforms for target drones (a variant of Tu-16K-26).
  • Badger F (Tu-16RM-2) - Another reconnaissance version based on the -16R/RM but with the addition of external ELINT equipment.
File:Tu-16 Badger G.jpg
Tu-16 Badger G with KSR-5 missile
  • Badger G (Tu-16K/Tu-16KSR) - Serving in the Naval Aviation, these were conversions from earlier models. These were designed to carry bombs in internal bays in addition to carrying air-to-surface missiles externally, such as the AS-5 Kelt and AS-6 Kingfish. There existed numerous variants, designated either from carried missile complex (K-11, K-16 and K-26) or from missiles of these complexes (KSR-11, KSR-2 and KSR-5). Following further modifications, they were also given suffixes. Main variants:
    • Tu-16KSR-2 - carrying the K-16 complex (two KSR-2 missiles). Used from 1962. Similar aircraft, converted from other variants, were designated Tu-16K-16.
    • Tu-16K-11-16 - carrying the K-16 complex (KSR-2 missiles) or the K-11 complex (two anti-radar KSR-11 missiles). Used from 1962. Similar aircraft were designated Tu-16KSR-2-11. Over 440 Tu-16 could carry the K-16 or K-11 complex.
Tu-16K-26 or Tu-16KSR-2-11-16, with KSR-5 missiles under wings
    • Tu-16K-26 - carrying the K-26 complex (two KSR-5 missiles), retaining a capability of KSR-2 and 11 missiles. Used from 1969. Similar aircraft were designated Tu-16KSR-2-5-11 or Tu-16KSR-2-5 (no KSR-11 capability). Over 240 Tu-16 could carry the K-26 complex.
    • Tu-16K-26P - carrying the K-26P missiles (two anti-radar KSR-5P missiles, as well as KSR-5, 2 or 11).
  • Badger H (Tu-16 Elka) - Designed for stand-off electronic warfare and electronic counter-measures support.
  • Badger J (Tu-16P Buket) - Another electronic warfare variant configured as an ECM strike escort.
  • Badger K (Tu-16Ye) - Believed to be a version of the Badger F configuration possessing enhanced ELINT capability.
  • Badger L (Tu-16P) - Another version of the Badger J with more modern systems and used in ELINT role.


File:Badger operators.png
Current operators of the Tu-16/H-6 in bright red, former operators in dark red
  • 10 aircraft inherited from the Soviet Union. Out of service by 1995.[3]
  • Indonesian Air Force : 25 Tu-16KS-1 acquired in 1961, Used during the preparation of Operation TRIKORA in 1962 (taking of Western New Guinea from the Netherlands) in Western New Guinea (now, Papua and Papua Barat). All of the aircraft planned for attacking Karel Doorman, Netherlands Naval Fleet Aircraft Carrier which sailed near Irian Barat. 14 aircraft in Skadron 41 and 12 more aircraft in Skadron 42. All of the aircraft based at Iswahjudi Air Force Base, Madiun, East Java. All of the aircraft grounded in 1969. No longer in service since 1970 [1]

Specifications (Tu-16)

General characteristics

  • Crew: Four
  • Length: 34.80 m (114 ft 2 in)
  • Wingspan: 33.00 m (108 ft 3 in)
  • Height: 10.36 m (34 ft 0 in)
  • Wing area: 165 m² (1,775 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 37,200 kg (82,000 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 76,000 kg (168,00 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 79,000 kg (174,000 lb)
  • Powerplant:Mikulin AM-3M-500 turbojets, 93.2 kN (20,900 lbf) each



  • Guns: 6-7× 23 mm Nudelman-Rikhter NR-23 cannons, two each in dorsal and ventral remote turrets and manned tail turret, with the occasional addition of one fixed forward in the nose
  • Bombs: 9,000 kg (20,000 lb) of free-fall weapons or
  • Missiles:
    • 1× Kh-10 (AS-2 'Kipper') anti-ship missile semi-recessed in bomb bay or
    • 1× Kh-26 (AS-6 'Kingfish') anti-ship missile on port underwing hardpoint

See also

Related development

Comparable aircraft


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 VectorSite. The Tupolev Tu-16 "Badger". Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  2. World Air Forces. Armenia Air Force. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  3. World Air Forces. Azerbaijan Air Force. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  4. 4.0 4.1 (August 2006) "Aircraft Profile:Tupolev Tu-16 Badger". Air International. 
  5. World Air Forces. Belarus Air Force. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  6. World Air Forces. Georgia Air Force. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:

Template:Tupolev aircraft

cs:Tupolev Tu-16 de:Tupolew Tu-16 es:Tupolev Tu-16 fr:Tupolev Tu-16 gl:Tupolev Tu-16 he:טופולב Tu-16 hr:Tupoljev Tu-16 id:Tu-16 Badger it:Tupolev Tu-16 ja:Tu-16 (航空機) nl:Tupolev Tu-16 no:Tupolev Tu-16 pl:Tu-16 pt:Tupolev Tu-16 ro:Tupolev Tu-16 ru:Ту-16 sv:Tupolev Tu-16 th:ตูโปเลฟ ตู-16 tr:Tupolev Tu-16 vi:Tupolev Tu-16

Template:From Wikpedia