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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Aircraft 64, Tu-64 / Tu-10 - Development

Based on preliminary work on the subject in August 1944, the Air Force prepared a TTT project for a high-altitude long-range bomber capable of solving other tasks besides the main purpose. So, for example, the design of the airframe of the aircraft should provide for the possibility of its use in transport and landing versions, for which, after the aircraft was modified in the factory, accommodation in the fuselage should be provided: either 50 seats for passengers or a group of paratroopers in the number of 70 with the possibility leaving the aircraft by the whole group for 15 s, or bulk cargoes (light tank T-60, engines AM-39 and M-71 in the package, cars M-1 and GAZ-AA) with mechanization of loading and unloading.

By September 1944 the model of the aircraft was ready, in the same month the first preliminary inspection of the layout by the customer was carried out. A lot of comments were made, in particular, the customer requested the installation of the radar.

The second preliminary inspection after the modifications was made only in February 1945, and the customer's observations on the overall layout, equipment, armament, etc. were again followed. In the version of the long-range reconnaissance aircraft, the aircraft was to have a technical range of 7,000 km due to the suspension in the bomb bay of an additional fuel tank. To ensure daytime aerial photography, three AFA cameras with focal lengths of 200, 500, 750 and 1000 mm should be installed in the bomb bay. For night aerial photography, 20 photobombs of the PHOTAB-35 or FOTAB-100 type were envisaged in the bomb bay and in the turret of the shooters - the installation of the apparatus NAFA-3s-50.

On April 7, 1945, the Air Force approved the final version of TTT for a new bomber. In the powerplant of the aircraft it was proposed to use the AM-43TK-Z00B or AM-46TK-300 engines. The crew increased to 10 people due to the appearance in the anterior sealed cabin of the radar operator. The number of guns was reduced to 5, the number of guns to 10. In the section dealing with radio equipment, there were requirements for the installation of radars, radio altimeters of small and large altitudes, radio equipment for blind landing, long-range aircraft equipment of the western Loran-S type, and equipment of radio identification and warning system for irradiation of the tail part.

On April 27, 1945, the mock commission finally approved the bomber model with four AM-43TK-300B engines. In OKB, they started issuing drawings "64" and building slipways for assembling the first copy. There was practically no questions about the airframe ["glider"] and the powerplant. The stumbling block was the equipment of the aircraft at the right time with modern equipment that meets the requirements of the Air Force. The enterprises-subcontractors of the Tupolev Design Bureau could not provide the aircraft at this stage - not only with the ordered navigational and radar equipment, but also with an automated remote control system for rifle and cannon armament. The foundations of this system were based on the "pseudoscience" of cybernetics - the attitude towards which in the ideological leadership of the country was extremely negative.

In view of the fact that the work on the "64" was of national importance, all details were reported to LP Beria, who supervised the nuclear program, and directly to Stalin. Information on the causes of delays and failures in the design and construction of the aircraft was well known to them and led the country's leaders to take a cardinal decision to create a strategic aviation carrier.

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Page last modified: 13-09-2021 12:14:01 ZULU