Mf3864 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 118 posts, RR: 0 Posted (11 years 11 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 3100 times:
Anyone see the Tupolov documentary on Discovery wings channel? Very interesting. Near the end they mention the TU-144, 2xx,3xx series. It looked like they were gearing up to make a sales push. I thought the TU-144 was shelved. Unless this program was old. But, it did show the 204, and smaller 300 series aircraft, so it could not have been that old.
Petertenthije From Netherlands, joined Jul 2001, 3481 posts, RR: 11
Reply 1, posted (11 years 11 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3006 times:
One Tu-144 was put back into flying condition again a few years back to fly some test flights for NASA. Maybe that's what you saw? Does anyone happen to know what happened to this plane? Is it still airworthy?
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13445 posts, RR: 77
Reply 2, posted (11 years 11 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 2975 times:
I doubt whether it is still flyable, it was reactivated for the now cancelled HSCT programme run by Boeing and NASA, to look at issues involved in maybe building a new SST.
Presumably it was used as BA and AF Concordes were busy serving their airlines, and none of the prototype, pre-production or or 1st two production aircraft were available, the UK one, 202, was little more of a hollow shell by the late 1990s after being used as a spares source by BA since the mid 1980's.
The TU-144 reactivated was re-engined with engines taken from a TU-160 Blackjack bomber, maybe an attempt to provide it with some kind of decent performance for the research role, to be frank the TU-144 was a lesson in how not to build an SST in the 1960's.
RIX From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 1788 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (11 years 11 months 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2887 times:
AFAIK, Tu144-2xx or -3xx never existed. There were just Tu144 (the first prototype, first SST to fly) and two production versions: Tu144S (the one that actually was in cargo and passenger service) and Tu144D ("ER" version; finally achieved range similar to that of Concorde but still only with 7t of payload... never entered service). BTW, it's Tupolev!