Tupolev MTB-2

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MTB-2 (ANT-44)
MTB-2.jpg
Role Flying boat/Amphibian
National origin Soviet Union
Manufacturer Tupolev
First flight 19 April 1937
Status Retired
Primary user Soviet Union
Number built Two

The Tupolev MTB-2 (Russian: Морской Тяжелый Бомбардировщик — Heavy Naval Bomber), also known as the ANT-44, was a four-engine prototype flying boat designed in the Soviet Union in 1935.

Design and development[edit]

The ANT-44 was designed as a long-range maritime reconnaissance/bomber flying boat. Construction of the first two prototype began in 1934. The initial design employed an all-metal construction with a shoulder-mounted semi-gull wing. The ANT-44 incorporated four 604 kW (810 hp) Gnome-Rhône Mistral Major 14Kdrs M-85 radial engines as well as underslung stabilizing floats.[1] After a month of factory trials, in December 1937 designers changed the Mistral Major radial engines for the higher rated and more powerful Tumansky M-87 627 kW (840 hp) engines. In 1938, they further modified the prototype to be amphibious, and the aircraft was refitted with updated 709 kW (950 hp) M-87A engines.[2]

The second prototype, designated ANT-44bis or ANT-44D, was an amphibious aircraft powered by four M-87A engines. With I. M. Sukhomlin at the controls, the aircraft set several world records in its class:[2]

  • 17 June 1940: altitude of 7,595 m (24,918 ft) without payload
  • 17 June 1940: altitude of 7,134 m (23,406 ft) with a 1,000 kg (2,205 lb) payload
  • 19 June 1940: altitude of 6,284 m (20,617 ft) with a 2,000 kg (4,409 lb) payload
  • 19 June 1940: altitude of 5,219 m (17,123 ft) with a 5,000 kg (11,023 lb) payload
  • 28 September 1940: maximum speed of 277.4 km/h (150 kn, 172 mph) over 1,000 km (540 nmi, 621 mi) with a 1,000 kg (2,205 lb) payload
  • 7 October 1940: maximum speed of 241.9 km/h (131 kn, 150 mph) over 1,000 km (540 nmi, 621 mi) with a 2,000 kg (4,409 lb) payload

Operational history[edit]

Only the two MTB-2 prototypes were built by Tupolev: the Soviet Union's entry into World War II interrupted any further development. Both aircraft were pressed into service in the Black Sea region. The ANT-44D, piloted by I. M. Sukhomlin, saw limited use in 1941–1943, both as a bomber and a transport,[2] and performed other tasks, such as emergency supply flights.[1]

Operators[edit]

 Soviet Union

Specifications (ANT-44D)[edit]

Data from [2]

General characteristics

  • Crew: seven-eight
  • Length: 22.42 m (73 ft 7 in)
  • Wingspan: 36.45 m (119 ft 7 in)
  • Height: 7.88 m (25 ft 10.2 in)
  • Wing area: 144.7 m² (1557.5 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 13,000 kg (28,660 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 19,000 kg (41,888 lb)
  • Powerplant: 4 × Tumansky M-87A radial engines, 709 kW (950 hp) each

Performance

Armament

2 20mm ShVAK cannon, 4 7.62mm ShKAS machine guns, 2000kg-4000kg bombs (4400lb-8800lb)

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Green 1968, p. 71.
  2. ^ a b c d Shavrov 1994

Bibliography[edit]

  • Green, William. "Facts by Request." Flying Review International, Volume 24, no. 3, November 1968, p. 71.
  • Shavrov V.B. Istoriia konstruktskii samoletov v SSSR, 1938–1950 gg. (3 izd.) (in Russian). Moscow: Mashinostroenie, 1994. ISBN 5-217-00477-0.