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Tu-143 Reys

Tu-143 Reys"Reis" ["Flight"]complex was designed, tested and put into serial production within extremely short period - less than four years. In 1972 unmanned reconnaissance aircraft, launcher, transportation and loading vehicle and test system were put into serial production. The complex was soon launched into operation and was widely used in combatant units. Total serial output of these aerial vehicles is about 1000 machines. Reconnaissance aircraft was built in three reconnaissance versions - photographic, TV and radiation. Data from TV and radiation equipment was linked down to ground data acquisition center in real time. "Reis" complexes have been operated till now days.

"Reis" complex was delivered to a number of foreign countries where it was used in real conditions and showed worth. "Reis" complex was followed by efficient reconnaissance complex "Strizh" with more extended range of reconnaissance equipment: photo- , IR-, TV-, laser and radio-systems. The complex provides reconnaissance range of 450 km. The complex was quickly introduced into combatant units and have been in operation in the Army till now.

In 1973 activities on unmanned aerial vehicles were headed by Georgiiy Gofbauer - one of leading specialists of the DB , who occupied this post for more than 20 years. He was the person who directly organized serial production of "Reis".

The Tu-143 was a tactical analog of the Tu-123. In the technical task for the new generation of complexes, in addition to autonomy, mobility and other tactical and technical requirements, a number of items were added, the implementation of which forced the developers to seriously reconsider the design, production and testing of unmanned complexes and its elements. In particular, the aircraft had to be reused, to fly at both small and high altitudes in the range of 50-5000 m, as well as over mountain areas.

High demands were made on the flight-navigation complex, which was supposed to ensure a fairly accurate exit of the reconnaissance aircraft to the reconnaissance area and to the landing site 500-500 m in size, where the landing was made after the task was completed. The short time assigned to the task to prepare and start the reconnaissance aircraft required the development of a new set of on-board equipment based on a modern element base, as well as the creation of an engine with a high degree of reliability.

The device was controlled by ABS-143, which provided acceleration with a set of heights according to the program entered. Throughout the entire flight, starting from the moment of launch, ABSU provided stabilization of the UAV relative to the center of mass, as well as a constant calculation of the distance traveled and control over the drift angle.

The unmanned complex "Reis" was widely used in Russia - they were armed with 25 squadrons, each of which had up to 12 such UAVs. A total of about 950 Tu-143 was produced.




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