Pryluky (air base)
|IATA: none – ICAO: UKBP|
|Operator||Ukrainian Air Force|
|Elevation AMSL||449 ft / 137 m|
Pryluky (also given as Priluki) is an air base in Chernihiv Oblast, Ukraine located 6 km west of Pryluky. This airfield was Ukraine's primary Tupolev Tu-160 bomber base (with Uzyn having the nation's Tupolev Tu-95 fleet). There are revetments for 20 large aircraft.
Pryluky accepted the USSR's first Tu-160 (Blackjack) in April 1987, building its fleet up to 19 by 1994. By the mid 1990s, the Pryluky Regiment had lost its value as a combat unit. The 184th GvTBAP's 19 "Blackjacks" were effectively grounded because of a lack of technical support, spare parts and fuel. At this point in time, Ukraine considered the Tu-160s more of a bargaining chip in their economic negotiations with Russia. Certainly, they were of very limited value to Ukraine from a military standpoint, but discussions with Russia concerning their return bogged down. Between October 1999 and February 2000 Ukraine turned over 8 Tu-160 bombers to Russia to pay off energy debts; these are now at Russia's Engels-2 air base.
Units stationed at Pryluky included:
- 184th Guards Heavy Bomber Aviation Regiment (184 GvTBAP). The regiment arrived at Priluky in April 1946, and at the same time was renumbered from 9th Long-Range Regiment of Guards to the 184th. It flew Tu-4s from 1950, Tu-16 aircraft beginning in 1955, then acquiring the Tupolev Tu-22M4 in 1984 and the Tu-160 from 1987 until 2000. It also flew the Tu-134UBL trainer.
- Piotr Butowski, International Air Power Review, Summer 2004, 81.
- "Dal'nyaya Aviatsiya". Aviabaza KPOI.
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