Tu-160 supersonic bombers set a world record for flight range
On September 19, 2020 Tu-160 supersonic strategic bombers of Russia set a world record for non-stop flight range and duration time for this class of aircraft. The information was given by the commander of long-range aviation of the Aerospace Forces of the Russian Federation, Lieutenant General Sergey Kobylash.
“A new record for the range and duration of a flight on the Tu-160 supersonic strategic missile carriers was set by two long-range aviation crews. The pilots of the Russian Aerospace Forces were in the air for more than 25 hours and covered over 20,000 km", said Kobylash. He added that "no one has flown an airplane of this class longer".
A previous record in 2010 was also set on Tu-160s, which were in the air for 24 hours and 24 minutes.
According to the Ministry of Defense, the flight of two Tu-160s took place over the neutral waters of the central part of the Arctic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean, the Kara Sea, the Laptev Sea, the East Siberian Sea, the Chukchi Sea, and the Barents Sea. The missile carriers took off and landed at the Engels airfield. The crew commanders were Major General Oleg Pchela and Lieutenant Colonel Sergey Volkovitskiy.
The Department added that during the flight the Tu-160s performed three in-flight refueling from six Il-78 aircraft. "At certain stages of the route, the Tu-160 strategic missile carriers were accompanied by Su-35S fighters, as well as aircraft from foreign countries," said the Ministry.
The flight of the Russian bombers took place in strict compliance with international rules for the use of airspace.
Photo credit: Evgeniy Kazenov