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Tu-330 Variants

The design and lay-out design variations and modifications of basic transport variant of the TU-330 in the ASTC has been carefully considered a range of possible tasks, which is able to meet the plane when it is used in the interests of national economy, as well as in the system of the Defense Minsitry. Additional versions would feature specialized administrative aircraft (compartment + two cars); repeater aircraft; long-range radar detection; jammer aircraft; reconnaissance and target indication; or patrol aircraft.

  • Tu-330 - a civilian transport aircraft.
  • Tu-330VT - military transport. It features the composition of equipment, desantirovaniya of people and goods. For Military and transport aviation TU-330VT (TU-330VTS) version of baseline cargo aircraft is proposed provided with advanced communication integrated system currently used in Air Force and with set of equipment designed for loading. unloading and arrangement of standard wheel, caterpillar combat machinery and staff with possibility of dropping the staff and machinery.
  • Tu-330P - fire.
  • Tu-330PS - search and rescue to conduct search and rescue operations on land and sea, patrolling in the sea area near and far, for exploration of fish shoals and ice conditions, aerial photography and environmental monitoring;
  • Tu-330R - repeater.
  • Tu-330RL - long-distance flight instrumental exploration.
  • Tu-330SE - health and breakdown - ambulance and evacuation aircraft
  • Tu-330TZ - refueller tanker with "buddy" type and "telescope" type refueling..
  • Tu-338 - aircraft engines powered by liquefied natural gas.


Tupolev conducted the design of transport aircraft Tu-330K with the NK-94 engine which works on liquefied natural gas. The aircraft is intended for the transportation of military and civil loads with mass to 35 T. Aviation kerosene on the aircraft is placed in the wing fuel tanks, tanks with liquefied natural gas [SPG] are arranged on the upper fuselage section in the fairings, which have a form with minimum aerodynamic drag, and contain 22.6 t SPG. The NK-94 engine for this aircraft is developed by joint stock company SNTK im. N.D. Kuznetsov. It is the cryogenic modification of the NK-93 engine. Provision is made for the possibility of landing aircraft on an unpaved airfield.

Tu-330KIn the mid-1970s of the last century, the USSR was dominated by an energy strategy, according to which, first of all, it was planned to use nuclear energy, and oil and gas, due to the small reserves, were thought to be relegated to the background. A hydrogen energy program has begun. Tupolevites did not remain aloof from this program. As it has been more than once in the glorious history of the company, Alexei Tupolev made a bold decision - to build a "hydrogen" aircraft. Such an aircraft was built and successfully tested without a single serious incident. This was preceded by a large multi-year program of bench and ground tests, aimed both at testing the functioning of new systems (there were about 30 of them on the plane), and, first of all, at ensuring safe operation.

Unfortunately, the energy strategy mentioned was not entirely accurate. Nuclear energy has not received a dominant development. The main place in the country's energy development program was taken by natural gas, which in time exceeded 50% in the specific gravity in the energy balance. Therefore, the flying laboratory, which acquired the status of the Tu-155 experimental aircraft, was modified to use not only liquid hydrogen, but also the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Thus, the world's first cryogenic fuel aircraft was created.

Tupolev developed a program for creating cryogenic aircraft. At the first stage of this program, the Tu-156 aircraft was created. The Tu-156 cargo-passenger aircraft is designed to test and certify elements of the on-board cryogenic fuel system during long-term operation, as well as to develop ground-based infrastructure. Cryogenic aircraft units will be installed on subsequent serial cryogenic aircraft of Tupolev OJSC. Two types of fuel are used on an airplane: aviation kerosene and liquefied natural gas, which makes it possible to operate the airplane at ordinary aerodromes and at aerodromes having LNG fueling systems. The use of two types of fuel significantly improves flight safety.

The design of the Tu-330K transport aircraft with the NK-94 engine operating on liquefied natural gas was underway. The aircraft was intended for transportation of military and civilian cargoes weighing up to 35 tons. Jet fuel on the aircraft is located in wing fuel tanks, LNG tanks are located on the upper part of the fuselage in fairings having a shape with minimal aerodynamic drag and accommodate 22.6 tons of LNG. The NK-94 engine for this aircraft is being developed by SNTK named after ND Kuznetsov. It is a cryogenic modification of the NK-93 engine. The possibility of landing on an unpaved airfield is provided. At present, the aircraft has been worked out to the level of technical proposals.

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Page last modified: 02-12-2019 17:59:46 ZULU