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MD-160, the sole Lun-class ekranoplan
|Operators:|| Soviet Navy
|In service:||1987 - 1995?-1999?|
|Class & type:||Lun|
|Type:||Ground effect vehicle transport|
|Displacement:||Displacement n/a, weight 286 tonnes unloaded|
|Beam:||(Wingspan) 44 m|
|Propulsion:||8× Kuznetsov NK-87 turbojet engines, 127.4 kN (28,600 lbf) thrust|
|Speed:||297 kn (550 km/h; 342 mph)|
|Range:||1,000 nmi (1,900 km; 1,200 mi)|
|Capacity:||100 tonnes (220,000 pounds)|
|Complement:||six officers and nine enlisted men|
|Puluchas search radar|
|Armament:||Six fixed-elevation SS-N-22 Sunburn antiship missile launchers
4x23 mm PI-23 turrets (2 x 2, 2,400 rounds)
The Lun-class ekranoplan (NATO reporting name Duck) was a ground effect aircraft designed by Rostislav Evgenievich Alexeev and used by the Soviet and Russian navies from 1987 to sometime in the late 1990s.
It flew using the extra lift generated by the effect of its large wings when close to the surface of the water - about four metres or less. Lun was one of the largest seaplanes ever built, with a length of 73 m (240 ft), rivalling the Hughes H-4 Hercules ("The Spruce Goose") and many jumbo jets.
The name Lun comes from the Russian for harrier.
Design and development
Aircraft was powered with eight Kuznetsov NK-87 turbofans, mounted on forward canards, each producing 127.4 kN (28,600 lbf) of thrust. It had a flying boat hull with a large deflecting plate at the bottom to provide a "step" for takeoff.
Equipped for anti-surface warfare, it carried the P-270 Moskit (Mosquito) guided missile. Six missile launchers were mounted in pairs on the dorsal surface of its fuselage with advanced tracking systems mounted in its nose and tail.
The only aircraft of this type ever built, the MD-160, entered service with the Black Sea Fleet in 1987. It became retired in the late 1990s and is now sitting unused at a naval station in Kaspiysk. The Russian Defense Ministry has no plans to revive the project.
Another version of Lun was planned for use as a mobile field hospital for rapid deployment to any ocean or coastal location. It was named the Spasatel ("Rescuer"). Work was about 90% done, when the military funding ended, and it was never completed.
Data from 
- Crew: 15 (6 officers, 9 enlisted)
- Capacity: 137 t (302,000 lb)
- Length: 73.8 m (242 ft 2 in)
- Wingspan: 44 m (144 ft 4 in)
- Height: 19.2 m (63 ft 0 in)
- Wing area: 550 m2 (5,900 sq ft)
- Empty weight: 286,000 kg (630,522 lb)
- Max takeoff weight: 380,000 kg (837,757 lb)
- Powerplant: 8 × Kuznetsov NK-87 turbofans, 127.4 kN (28,600 lbf) thrust each
- Maximum speed: 550 km/h (342 mph; 297 kn)
- Cruising speed: 450 km/h (280 mph; 243 kn) at 2.5 m (8 ft)
- Range: 2,000 km (1,243 mi; 1,080 nmi)
- Service ceiling: 7,500 m (24,606 ft) or 5 m (16 ft) in ground effect
- Guns: two 23mm Pl-23 cannon in a twin tail turret and two 23mm Pl-23 cannon in a twin turret under forward missile tubes
- Missiles: six launchers for SS-N-22 Sunburn antiship missiles
- Caspian Sea Monster (KM)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lun-class ekranoplan.|
- Image of Lun floating with helicopter hovering nearby se-technology.com, showing armament, 8 engines and search radar
- Ekranoplan project information (pictures and videos)
- Global Aircraft site
- Image of Lun-class ekranoplan
- Recent photos of the MD-160
- Lun Ekranoplan on Google Maps
- Several images
- (English) All Lun-class Ekranoplanes - Complete Ship List
- Several close-up images
- Wired article on Lun