Fielding of Russian Special-Mission Aircraft Delayed Until 2013-2014

Tu-214R, the Russian next-generation special mission aircraft. Photo:

The Russian Air Force has contracted the Tupolev design bureau to develop and produce two prototypes of special-mission versions of its Tu-214 commercial transport aircraft, designated Tu-214R, developed under the codename ‘Project 141’.

The aircraft is considered as the successor of the Ilyushin IL20M ELINT aircraft, which has remained in operational service for five decades. The Tu-214R was originally scheduled to enter service in 2008 but by that time the aircraft hasn’t made its first flight yet. At present the scheduled Initial Operational Service milestone is expected by mid 2013 with the follow on prototype fielded a year later.

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