Russian MOD Video Shows RAF Typhoons And RNoAF F-16s, F-35s From Inside Russian Navy Tu-142 During Intercept

A screenshot from the Russian MOD video shows one of the two F-35s escorting the Tu-142s. (Image credit: Russia MOD)

Pretty interesting footage from inside a Russian Naval Aviation Tu-142 intercepted yesterday.

The Russian MoD has just released an interesting video that provides additional details about the long-range mission flown in international airspace by a Tu-142MK ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) and maritime patrol aircraft and a Tu-142MR Bear-J VLF band radio communications relay platform escorted by at least one MiG-31 Foxhound (armed with R-33 missiles) that caused the Royal Norwegian Air Force and the RAF to scramble their interceptors on Mar. 7, 2020.

Filmed from inside one of the Tu-142s, the video shows the RAF Typhoons, the RNoAF F-16s from Bodø as well as the Norwegian F-35A launched from Orland Air Station for their first intercept of Russian aircraft. The clip, that shows also one of the Tu-142s as it is refueled by an Il-78 Midas tanker, is also interesting because lets the viewer see the Bear’s coaxial contra-rotating propellers at work.

As already reported, the Tu-142MK is designed to perform ASW: its goal is to search and destroy submarines in distant patrol areas. The aircraft can carry out long-range maritime reconnaissance, aiming, and search-and-rescue operations too. Based on the Tu-95RT, a maritime reconnaissance variant of the baseline strategic bomber produced for naval operations, it has a maximum speed of 855 km/h, cruising speed of 720 km/h and a range of 12,550 km.

The Tu-142MR “Bear J” is a VLF band radio communications relay platform whose mission is similar in concept to the one of US E-6A TACAMO: it provides a communications relay capability to submerged SSBNs, SSGNs and SSNs. The Bear J is based on the Bear F airframe but has a ventral fairing containing the VLF antenna cable reel and unique nose radome and antenna on the vertical tail.

About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.