Tactical tanker Tu-16Z
The TU-16 bomber replaced the TU-4 and began to be used since 1953. An active role here was played by a refueled airplane. It came up behind to the right of the tanker, and at that time let out from the tip of the right console fuel hose with a stabilizing parachute and a lock on the end. The hose completely left the wing and then a 30 meter long cable attached to it emerged. The receiver aircraft "lay down" the left plane on the hose and, by its evolution, tried to hit the hose lock in the annular hook on the lower part of the plane, after which an automatic coupling took place and the hose was attached to the inlet fueling device on the wing.
Even at the design stage, various possibilities for increasing the range of Tu-16 were considered, including the introduction of a fueling system in flight. In the early 1950s the first version of the system of wings was completed by Tu-4 and partially mastered by the Air Force. Although the total number of refuellers and refueled aircraft did not exceed ten cars, the practical experience gained enabled us to hope for a successful refit of the Tu-16 in the shortest possible time. September 17, 1953 issued an order MAP No. 44, which ordered the OKB-156 AN Tupolevand all other aircraft construction teams from now on design all bombers only with the fuel refueling system in flight. OKB-918, which was headed by Chief Designer S.M. Alekseyev, was ordered to continue work on the creation of standard filling equipment for Tu-16 in agreement with the OKB A.Tupolev. The system was required to be presented for state tests in the third quarter of 1954.
On May 26, 1954, the Council of Ministers issued Resolution No. 1013-438, and on June 3 - the relevant order of the MAP No. 354, according to which the rate of pumping of fuel was set at 2000 l / min, and the deadline for submission to the State Attempt was postponed to the 4th quarter. The Air Force obliged in the summer-autumn of 1954 to transfer three serial production Tu-16s to the industry for conversion to tanker aircraft. For this purpose, the first serial Tu-16s No. 1880001 and No. 1880101 of the Kuibyshev aircraft plant were allotted. In the future, Tu-16 No. 1880301 was re-equipped in the experimental aircraft designed to study the possibility of refueling on the MiG-19 (CM-10) wings. However, tests conducted in 1955-1956 showed the inexpediency of using such a system for refueling fighters.
The wing fueling variant, adopted for the Tu-16 differed from developed for TU-4. The refueling machine was a converted serial bomber, and in case of need it was possible to conduct a reverse operation in the field by releasing the cargo compartment from the fueling "farm" (hereinafter, the sight of the OPB-11R was removed from the refuellers and they lost the possibility of retrofitting). of the filling system, which is installed on the plane refueled, it had light weight and did not compromise its aerodynamics.
The first refueler was presented for testing in 1955. Finishing the system took almost a year and a half and since 1957, it began to install on the Tu-16 in all three factories that produced it. In total, according to OKB-156 documents, 114 Tu-16 bombers were equipped as wagon tankers (according to other documents, 46 in total). The refuellers were called the Tu-16 "Gas station", Tu-16 (Z), Tu-16Yu, and also - the product "NZ". After a short time, the designation Tu-16 (Z) was applied without brackets - Tu-16Z. To receive fuel in the air, 571 aircraft were modified, which accounted for more than a third of the total number of Tu-16s produced. Refueling Tu-16 various modifications had in their name the addition "FOR" ("refueled"). For example, Tu-16P (FOR), Tu-16K-10 (FOR), etc. However, over time, this addition has disappeared.
|Wing span, m||32,99|
|Wing area, m2||164,65|
|Weight, kg- Empty airplane||37730-Normal|
|Type of engine||2 x TRD RD-3M|
|Thrust, kgf||2 x 9500|
|Speed, km / h -maximum||992|
|Distance range, km||5000|
|Range of flight, km||4800|
|Fighting radius of action, km||2500|
|Practical ceiling, m||14500|
|Armament||2 x 23 mm gun AM-23|
|Payload||9800 kg of fuel.|
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