Why is the Tupolev Tu-95, NATO reporting name “Bear,” a 1950’s aircraft, still being used up until the present day, and even upgraded to year 2040?
In Service for the Last 70 Years
The Tu-95 has continued to operate in the Russian Air Force. One of the reasons for this plane’s longevity was its suitability range and fuel efficiency.
It’s also not that old as compared to its American counterpart, the B-52 which was it was introduced on February 1952. Meanwhile, the Tu-95’s first flight was in the year 1955.
The plane has a length of 49.13 meters which is massive, and a wingspan of 50.04 meter attached to four counter rotating turbo shaft engines. Meanwhile, the height of this monster near is around 13.3 meters.
Generally, the Tu-95 masses just over 400,000 pounds, and all of its weight is being powered by a huge power plant consisting of four Kuznetsov NK-12 turboprop engines. These crank out a whopping 15,000 horsepower each.
The Bear has external weapon loads of a total of eight KG-101. In addition, there are six KH-55 in the internal rotary launcher, and a long-range standoff weapon, the KH-101.
The plane has a range of up to 2,500 kilometers and can carry nuclear warheads. Meanwhile, the back of the aircraft is armed by two Gryazev-Shipunov GSH-23 Twin Barrelled Automatic Cannons at the rear for self defense against airborne threats. A worthy wingman of the plane would be the Sukhoi Su-57, a fifth generation jet.