Forgotten project: hydrogen "Carcass" can find a second life

The unfulfilled hope of the Soviet aviation industry - the Tu-155 hydrogen aircraft, was shown to the guests of MAKS-2019 as part of the historical exposition. The latter was organized by the Legends of Aviation Foundation with the support of the OUR SKY foundation.




Tu-155 became the first passenger airliner with a cryogenic engine. Having made its debut flight in 1988, the aircraft was operated for 4 years, having carried out 150 successful flights. At the same time, instead of toxic kerosene, hydrogen and liquefied gas were used as fuel. However, despite the apparent success, the collapse of the USSR, followed by him economic difficulties, put a “cross” on the legendary plane.

It is worth noting that, contrary to concerns about the explosiveness of hydrogen, and skepticism about the project as a whole, the Tu-155 completed 5 successful flights on hydrogen fuel. To ensure maximum safety, a special fuel supply and cooling system was designed.

Despite the fact that this project could be a real breakthrough in the domestic aviation industry, it remained unrealized.

The then level of development of technologies not allowed to take it fully,

- summed up Valery Vladimirovich Arkhipov - flight engineer who completed almost all flights on the Tu-155.

However, not everything is lost. As part of the MAKS-2019 event, Nikolai Sergeyevich Prokhorov, an engineer from FSUE RRC “Applied Chemistry”, who at that time was developing hydrogen fuel for a promising liner, expressed cautious optimism about the resumption of the project. He believes that the technologies implemented in the Tu-155 can be used, for example, to create a passenger supersonic airliner and an air-orbit aircraft. A similar point of view is shared by the head of the OUR SKY foundation, Alexei Nikolaev.

It is worth emphasizing that the opinion expressed by the functionaries is not unfounded. According to Prokhorov, St. Petersburg GIPH is now just engaged in a project on the use of hydrogen and methane as an aviation fuel.
Photos used: Alan Wilson / wikimedia.org
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  1. Pishenkov Offline
    Pishenkov (Alexey) 5 September 2019 18: 37
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    Apparently, the USSR, like the German Third Reich at one time, left so many advanced technical developments that you can “ride” them for a long time after his death ... And how such technical breakthroughs arose in terrible totalitarian systems, what did not dream of free democracies? ... That is the question ...
  2. tracer Offline
    tracer (Parma) 5 September 2019 19: 04
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    You can fly a plane, but if it is filled with hydrogen to the eyeballs ...? A leak and such a "keshkelbe" (author Ravshan and Jamshud). The explosiveness of liquid hydrogen cannot be overestimated.
  3. Sergey Latyshev Offline
    Sergey Latyshev (Serge) 6 September 2019 21: 57
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    Another URA - maybe - can not zhurnalyug.
    There’s a series of breakthrough victories, not one of which has gone into the mass production. And even approximate figures are usually not about theoretical orders.
    1. Bitter Offline
      Bitter (Gleb) 13 September 2019 09: 05
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      Well, not quite right.
      If at one time there was absolutely nothing except the desire to sell and fill pockets, it would be left to its own devices. am Over the past 30 years, this segment could be brought to mind. But it wasn’t interesting request it is surprising that they didn’t pass this prototype to the colormet or didn’t get it off somewhere in “America” for a couple of tugriks.
      I think export orders to measure the quality and technological advancement of products is the wrong way.
      And the rest, in this particular case, you can write a "carcass" even without quotes. what
      1. Sergey Latyshev Offline
        Sergey Latyshev (Serge) 13 September 2019 09: 08
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        But URA-boasting - right.
        1. Bitter Offline
          Bitter (Gleb) 13 September 2019 09: 13
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          It’s like in that tale: bully

          People’s healer Praying Mantis with dry, like grass, hands began to touch Pinocchio.

          “One of two things,” he whispered, “either the patient is alive, or he died.” If he is alive, he will remain alive, or he will not remain alive. If he is dead, he can be revived or cannot be revived.

          “Shhsharlatanism,” said the Owl, flapped its soft wings and flew away into the dark attic.
  4. shinobi Offline
    shinobi (Yuri) 7 September 2019 05: 29
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    Hydrogen, in comparison with natural gas, loses in price competition, while it is highly explosive. Any leak is very dangerous. Natural gas in this regard is safer and easier to handle. Tu-155 is a technology demonstrator, its operation is still somewhat more complicated than usual, and as long as there is oil, it will remain a demonstrator. Like, in fact, methane rocket engines, although their efficiency is higher.