Tupolev Tu-141

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Tu-141 Strizh
M-141 Cruise Missile.JPG
Tu-141 Strizh at Central Air Force Museum, Monino, Russia
Role Remote controlled, UAV
Manufacturer Tupolev
First flight 1974
Introduction 1973
Retired 1989
Status Retired
Primary users Soviet Union
Russia
Ukraine
Produced 1979–1989
Number built 142
Developed from Tupolev Tu-123
Developed into Tupolev Tu-143

The Tupolev Tu-141 Strizh (Swift, Russian: Стриж) was a Soviet reconnaissance drone in service with the Soviet Red Army and with a number of its Warsaw Pact and Middle East allies during the late 1970s and 1980s.

History[edit]

Development[edit]

Tu-141 with launcher

The Tu-141 was a follow-on to the Tupolev Tu-123 and was a relatively large, medium-range reconnaissance drone. It was designed to undertake reconnaissance mission at a depth of several hundred kilometers from the front lines at transonic speeds. It could carry a range of payloads, including film cameras, infrared imagers, EO imagers, and imaging radar.

As with previous Tupolev designs, it had a dart-like rear-mounted delta wing, forward-mounted canards, and a KR-17A turbojet engine mounted above the tail. It was launched from a trailer using a solid-propellant booster, and it landed with the aid of a tail-mounted parachute.

The Tu-141 was in Soviet service from 1979–1989, mostly on the western borders of the Soviet Union.

2014 comeback[edit]

In 2014, amidst its fight against insurgency in Eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian Air Force announced that it would be bringing back Tu-141 that had been in reserve since the collapse of the Soviet Union.[1][2][3]

Specifications[edit]

Data from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Directory: Part 2[4]

General characteristics

  • Crew: None
  • Length: 14.33 m (47 ft 0¼ in)
  • Wingspan: 3.88 m (12 ft 8½ in)
  • Height: 2.44 m (8 ft 0 in)
  • Wing area: 10.0[5] m2 (108 ft2)
  • Gross weight: 6,215 kg (13,702 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Tumansky KR-17A, 19.6 kN (4,409 lbf) thrust each

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 1,100 km/h (683 mph)
  • Cruising speed: 1,000 km/h (620 mph)
  • Range: 1,000 km (620 miles)
  • Service ceiling: 6,000 m (19,700 ft)

References[edit]

  • Gordon, Yefim and Vladimir Rigmant. OKB Tupolev: A History of the Design Bureau and its Aircraft. Hinkley, UK: Midland Publishing, 2005. ISBN 978-1-85780-214-6.
  • Munson, Kenneth. "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Directory: Part 2". Air International, August 1997, Vol 53 No 2. pp. 100–108.

This article contains material that originally came from the web article Unmanned Aerial Vehicles by Greg Goebel, which exists in the Public Domain.

External links[edit]