A left side view of a Soviet Tu-95 Bear bomber aircraft equipped with undernose radar scanner and underbelly radome in flight
The original finding aid described this photograph as:
Scene Camera Operator: Unknown
Release Status: Released to Public
Combined Military Service Digital Photographic Files
The Tu-95 BEAR was perhaps the most successful bomber produced by Soviet aviation. It was the only bomber deployed by any country to use turboprop engines, which provided extraordinarily long endurance at speeds only slightly less than comparable turbojet-powered heavy bombers. The development of the Tu-95 intercontinental bomber began in the early 1950s. A team under Aleksandr A. Arkhangelsky, Tupolev’s longtime associate, designed the Tu-95 (“Bear”), a huge turboprop bomber that first flew in 1954 and became one of the most durable military aircraft ever built. A huge turboprop bomber first flew in 1954. Tu-95 bombers are still on the frontlines after more than 60 years in service. Two civilian aircraft were derived from these—the Tu-104, which appeared in 1955 and became one of the first jet transports to provide regular passenger service, and the Tu-114 long-range passenger plane, the largest propeller-driven aircraft ever in regular service.