Russia’s newest modernised missile-carrying bomber Tu-160M ??has conducted its first flight test, Russian aerospace and defence company Tupolev said on Sunday.
“On 2 February 2020, the first flight of the first deeply modernised Tu-160M ??prototype bomber based on the Tu-160 combat aircraft took place at the KAZ airfield named after S. P. Gorbunov, a branch of PJSC Tupolev”, the press service told reporters. The flight proceeded at an altitude of 1,500 metres and lasted 37 minutes.
“During the flight, the necessary checks were performed on updated systems and equipment installed as part of the deep modernisation of the aircraft. According to the crew, the flight went as normal, the systems and equipment worked without any remarks”, the press service added. Tu-160M features an onboard defence system, an advanced communications system, new engines and weaponry that significantly expand the bomber’s performance and strike capabilities.
In December, Russian Deputy Defence Minister Alexei Krivoruchko said that deliveries of the modernised strategic Tu-160M bombers to the army would begin in 2021.