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Author Topic: Russian Bear bombers in exercise  (Read 15339 times)

Offline Stealthflanker

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Re: Russian Bear bombers in exercise
« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2008, 04:48:42 PM »
Hey about the bomber and tanker force. If you pop a few air-to-ground precision ballistic missiles, like say that "koala" project? They can hit any target in the world... Probably starting with any ICBM and nuclear submarine bases in the world...

Koala ? the P-750 "Grom", Meteorit or SS-N-X-24 "Scorpion" well it's a Hypersonic Cruise Missile, with range around 5000Km carried by Tu-95's
as far as i know only the air launched version the Meteorit A completed and tested, current status however is unknown
there are other project like the KH-90 GELA but it's lost to stealthier but subsonic Kh-101 , also carried by Tu-95's
as for GELA..i heard it was sold to USA who also purchased the research data and later help the development of X-43.

he..he back on topic..i really love to see those bombers flying again  ;, BTWhow many bears now in service within Russia, especially the Strike variant..the one who carries Obzor Attack RADAR in it ?

Offline Webmaster

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Re: Russian Bear bombers in exercise
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2008, 04:08:27 AM »
Tu-95MS, 2007 official data says 64, but just noticed in some web articles 40 and 74. 74 must be incorrect or include other versions.

88 Tu-95MS were produced when production ceased in 1992, with 84 on the 1991 START I inventory list: 57 Tu-95MS-16 and 27 Tu-95MS-6, although one of those MS-16s was still awaiting delivery at the factory.

63 remained in the inventory in 2001, I guess the undelivered MS-16 has been added since, but I think at best only 39 can be MS-16s, since Ukraine only returned three Bears out of 25 with 21 being MS-16s, unless more were returned in the last decade, not sure. A reported 35 of the Tu-95MS16s were (planned to be) upgraded, with all the (+/- 25) remaining MS-6 being gradually retired. Maybe with Putin and oil/gas price rises, some more (incl MS-6s) have or will be undergoing the upgrade. Not sure.

Now for speculation a bit of reverse-reasoning: with plans for 30 Tu-160s (I know, I know, too big a number) and 35 upgraded Bears, but 1 will probably stick at some testing centre, that means Russia wants to have 64 long-range bombers. So last year it had 64 Bears (3regiments) and 15 Tu-160s (1 rgt), 1 Tu-160 has been added since... so it can do without 15 bears now, let's say those 15 at least, don't fly anymore of which 4 are MS-16s for whatever reason (they won't be upgraded), that gives us a current number of 49 Bears incl 1 prototype...with 1 Tu-16MSM prototype and 14 Tu-96MS-6s earmarked for retirement in the coming years to be replaced by Tu-160s. So in the future there will be 2 rgts at Engels with Tu-160s (15 a/c each) and 2 rgts at Ukrainka with Tu-95MSMs (17 a/c each), although it's likely there will be just 1 Bear regiment and 1 Tu-160 regiment of Soviet-times size.

So, it's probably somewhere between 64 and 49 now... for the Tu-95MS. Not sure about the others, even harder to keep track of. I believe the Russian Navy had a dozen or so Tu-142MR/MZ overhauled in the Ukraine over the past few years.

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