The Tupolev Tu-114 was a long-range turboprop airliner produced in the Soviet Union. First flying on 15 November 1957, it entered service with Aeroflot on 24 April 1961.
To this day it holds the record as the fastest propeller-driven aircraft in the world. Four Kuznetsov NK-12MV engines driving two large contra-rotating propellers, coupled with 35 degree swept wing, meant the Tu-114 could reach speeds in excess of 800 kilometres per hour.
Tupolev Tu-114 Video
Following on from last weeks video on the Douglas DC-9, we head behind the iron curtain to find out about the Tupolev Tu-114. Running a little under 10 minutes, it is produced by Mustard who create my favourite videos on aircraft.
On Aeroflot’s international services, the aircraft typically seated 155 or 167 passengers with three classes – economy, first and deluxe. First class featured tables between facing seats like on a train, while deluxe had sleeping compartments. A lower deck galley was staffed by an on board chef to provide meals.
Services operated to various cities on the Aeroflot network, such as Copenhagen, Havana, Montreal, New Delhi, Paris and Belgrade. Flights between Moscow and Havana were non-stop, with seating reduced to 60 and additional fuel tanks added. Flights of 19 hours were not uncommon!
One interesting fact not mentioned in the video is that between 1967 and 1969, Japan Air Lines operated between Tokyo and Moscow in conjunction with Aeroflot. A two class, 105 seat layout was used for these flights.
How About A Vintage Russian Colour Promotional Film?
There is another film below which lasts just over 9 minutes, produced in 1959. Of course, it is all in Russian, but don’t let that detract from the experience.
Besides great air to air photography, there is loads happening in this film inside the aircraft. You’ll see cockpit views, then from about 3:45 we’re in the cabin, seeing the different seating, downstairs galley, meal service, sleeping berths, toilets and more. It’s a pretty cool thing to see!
The Tupolev Tu-114 ceased regular service in 1976, replaced by more capable jet aircraft. Just 32 were built and there was only one accident, making it one of the safest Soviet airliners ever produced.
Due to its contra-rotating propellers, it was a very noisy aircraft both inside and out. I am sure the passengers would not have complained though, considering the regime of the time.
Did you ever see or fly on a Tupolev Tu-114? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
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Featured image by Mikhail A Toporikov via Airliners.net