Military Wiki
Tupolev Tu-154M in latest Aeroflot livery
Role Narrow-body jet airliner
National origin Soviet Union/Russia
Manufacturer Tupolev
Designer Tupolev Design Bureau
First flight 4 October 1968
Introduction February 7, 1972 (1972-02-07) (Aeroflot)
Status In service
Primary users Rossiya
Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise
Russian Air Force
Produced 1968–2013[1]
Number built 1,026
Unit cost
$45 million[citation needed]
Variants Tupolev Tu-155

The Tupolev Tu-154 (Russian: Ту-154; NATO reporting name: Careless) is a three-engine medium-range narrow-body airliner designed in the mid-1960s and manufactured by Tupolev. A workhorse of Soviet and (subsequently) Russian airlines for several decades, it carried half of all passengers flown by Aeroflot and its subsidiaries (137.5 million/year or 243.8 billion passenger km in 1990), remaining the standard domestic-route airliner of Russia and former Soviet states until the mid-2000s. It was exported to 17 non-Russian airlines and used as head-of-state transport by the air forces of a number of countries.

With a cruising speed of 975 kilometres per hour (606 mph), the Tu-154 is one of the fastest civilian aircraft in use and has a range of 5,280 kilometres (3,280 mi). Capable of operating from unpaved and gravel airfields with only basic facilities, it was widely used in extreme Arctic conditions of Russia's northern/eastern regions where other airliners were unable to operate. Originally designed for a 45,000 hr service life (18,000 cycles) but capable of 80,000 hrs with upgrades, it is expected to continue in service until 2016, although noise regulations have restricted flights to western Europe and other regions. In January 2010, Russian flag carrier Aeroflot announced the retirement of its Tu-154 fleet after 40 years, with the last scheduled flight being Aeroflot Flight 736 from Ekaterinburg to Moscow on 31 December 2009.[2] Since 1968 there have been 39 fatal incidents involving the Tu-154, most of which were caused either by factors unrelated to the aircraft, or by its extensive use in demanding conditions.[3][4]


Tu-154 for Russian Ministry of Defence Manufacturing, 2009. One of several airframes built in the 1990s and left unsold

The Tu-154 was developed to meet Aeroflot's requirement to replace the jet-powered Tu-104, the Antonov An-10 'Ukraine' and the Ilyushin Il-18 turboprops. The requirements called for either a payload capacity of 16–18 tonnes (35,000–40,000 lb) with a range of 2,850–4,000 kilometres (1,770–2,490 mi) while cruising at a speed of 900 km/h (560 mph), or a payload of 5.8 tonnes (13,000 lb) with a range of 5,800–7,000 kilometres (3,600–4,300 mi) while cruising at 850 km/h (530 mph). A take-off distance of 2,600 metres (8,500 ft) at maximum take-off weight was also stipulated as a requirement. Conceptually similar to the British Hawker Siddeley Trident, which first flew in 1962, and the American Boeing 727, which first flew in 1963, the medium-range Tu-154 would be marketed by Tupolev at the same time as Ilyushin was marketing the long-range Ilyushin Il-62. The Soviet Ministry of Aircraft Industry chose the Tu-154 as it incorporated the latest in Soviet aircraft design and best met Aeroflot's anticipated requirements for the 1970s and 1980s.[5]

The first project chief was Sergey Yeger but in 1964, Dmitryi S. Markov assumed that position. In 1975, the project lead role was turned over to Aleksandr S. Shengardt.[6]

The Tu-154 first flew on 4 October 1968. The first deliveries to Aeroflot were in 1970 with freight (mail) services beginning in May 1971 and passenger services in February 1972. There was still limited production of the 154M model as of January 2009, despite previous announcements of the end of production in 2006.[7] The last serial Tu-154 airplane was delivered to the Russian Defense Ministry on 19 February 2013.[8] 1025 Tu-154s have been built, 214 of which are still in service as of 14 December 2009.[9] In January 2013 the Aviakor factory announced that it was about to deliver a new Tu-154M to the Russian Ministry of Defense equipped with upgraded avionics, a VIP interior and a communications suite. The factory has 4 unfinished hulls in its inventory which can be completed if new orders are received.[10]


Tu-154B-2 of Cubana

The Tu-154 is powered by three rear-mounted low-bypass turbofan engines arranged similarly to those of the Boeing 727, but it is slightly larger than its American counterpart. Both the 727 and the Tu-154 use an S-duct for the middle (number 2) engine. The original model was equipped with Kuznetsov NK-8-2 engines, which were replaced with Soloviev D-30KU-154 in the Tu-154M. All Tu-154 aircraft models have a relatively high thrust-to-weight-ratio which gave excellent performance, although at the expense of poorer fuel efficiency, which became an important factor in later decades as fuel costs grew.

The flight deck is fitted with conventional dual yoke control columns. Flight control surfaces are hydraulically operated.

The cabin of the Tu-154, although of the same six-abreast seating layout, gives the impression of an oval interior, with a lower ceiling than is common on Boeing and Airbus airliners. The passenger cabin accommodates 128 passengers in a two-class layout and 164 passengers in single-class layout, and up to 180 passengers in high-density layout. The layout can be modified to what is called a winter version where some seats are taken out and a wardrobe is installed for passenger coats. The passenger doors are also smaller than on its Boeing and Airbus counterparts. Furthermore, luggage space in the overhead compartments is very limited.

Like the Tupolev Tu-134, the Tu-154 has a wing swept back at 35° at the quarter-chord line. The British Hawker Siddeley Trident has the same sweepback angle, while the Boeing 727 has a slightly smaller sweepback angle of 32°. The wing also has anhedral (downward sweep) which is a distinguishing feature of Russian low-wing airliners designed during this era. Most Western low-wing airliners such as the contemporary Boeing 727 have Dihedral (upward sweep). The anhedral means that Russian airliners have poor lateral stability compared to their Western counterparts, but also have weaker dutch roll tendencies.

Rossiya Airlines Tu-154M on departure at Moscow Domodedovo Airport

Considerably heavier than its predecessor Soviet-built airliner the Ilyushin Il-18, the Tu-154 was equipped with an oversized landing gear to reduce ground load, enabling it to operate from the same runways. The aircraft has two six-wheel main bogies fitted with large low-pressure tires that retract into pods extending from the trailing edges of the wings (a common Tupolev feature), plus a two-wheel nose gear unit. Soft oleo struts (shock absorbers) provide a much smoother ride on bumpy airfields than most airliners, which only very rarely operate on such poor surfaces.

The original requirement was to have a three-person flight crewcaptain, first officer and flight engineer – as opposed to 4/5-person crew on other Soviet airliners. It became evident that a fourth crew member, a navigator, was still needed, and a seat was added on production aircraft, although his workstation was compromised due to the limitations of the original design. Navigators are no longer trained and this profession will become obsolete with the retirement of older Soviet-era planes.

The plane's avionics suite, for the first time in the Soviet Union, is built to American airworthiness standards[citation needed]. The latest variant (Tu-154M-100, introduced 1998) includes an NVU-B3 Doppler navigation system, a triple autopilot, which provides an automatic ILS approach according to ICAO category II weather minima, an autothrottle, a Doppler drift and speed measure system (DISS), "Kurs-MP" radio navigation suite and others[citation needed]. A stability and control augmentation system improves handling characteristics during manual flight. Modern upgrades normally include a TCAS, GPS and other modern systems, mostly American or EU-made. Early versions of the Tu-154 cannot be modified to meet the current Stage III noise regulations and are banned from flying where those regulations are in force, such as Europe. The Tu-154M may use hush kits to meet Stage III and theoretically Stage IV. However, current European Union regulations forbid the use of hush kits to meet Stage IV[citation needed]. The Tu-154M would need to be re-engined to meet Stage IV within the EU, an extensive and potentially expensive upgrade[citation needed].


Yakutia Airlines Tu-154M

LOT Polish Airlines Tu-154M – retired from service in early 90s

Air Koryo Tu-154B-2


Many variants of this airliner have been built. Like its western counterpart, the 727, many of the Tu-154s in service have been hush-kitted, and some converted to freighters.

Tu-154 production started in 1970, while first passenger flight was performed at 9 February 1972. Powered by Kuznetsov NK-8-2 turbofans, it carried 164 passengers. About 42 were built.
The first upgraded version of the original Tu-154, the A model, in production since 1974, added center-section fuel tanks and more emergency exits, while engines were upgraded to higher-thrust Kuznetsov NK-8-2U. Other upgrades include automatic flaps/slats and stabilizer controls and modified avionics. Max. take-off weight – 94,000 kg (207,235 lb). There were 15 different interior layouts for the different domestic and international customers of the airplane, seating between 144 and 152 passengers. The easiest way to tell the A model from the base model is by looking at the spike at the junction of the fin and tail; this is a fat bullet on the A model rather than a slender spike on the base model.[11]
As the original Tu-154 and Tu-154A suffered wing cracks after only a few years in service, a version with a new, stronger wing, designated Tu-154B, went into production in 1975. It also had an extra fuel tank in fuselage, extra emergency exits in the tail, and the maximum take-off weight increased to 98,000 kg (216,053 lb). Also important to Aeroflot was that the increased passenger capacity led to lower operating costs. As long as the airplane had the NK-8-2U engines the only way to improve the economics of the airplane was to spread costs across more seats.[12] The autopilot was certified for ICAO Category II automatic approaches. Most previously built Tu-154 and Tu-154A were also modified into this variant, with the replacement of the wing. Max. take-off weight increased to 96,000 kg (211,644 lb). 111 were built.
Aeroflot wanted this version for increased revenue on domestic routes. It carried 160 passengers. This version also had some minor modifications to fuel system, avionics, air conditioning, landing gear. 64 were built from 1977 to 1978.
A minor modernization of Tu-154B-1. The airplane was designed to be converted from the 160 passenger version to a 180 passenger version by removing the galley.[13] The procedure took about two and a half hours. Some of the earlier Tu-154B modified to that standard. Max. take-off weight increased to 98,000 kg (216,053 lb), later to 100,000 kg (220,462 lb). 311 aircraft were built, including VIP versions, a few of them are still in use.
The Tu-154S is an all-cargo or freighter version of the Tu-154B, using a strengthened floor, and adding a forward cargo door on the port side of the fuselage. The airplane could carry 9 Soviet PAV-3 pallets. Max. payload – 20,000 kg (44,092 lb). There were plans for 20 aircraft, but only nine aircraft were converted; two from Tu-154 model and seven from Tu-154B model. Trials were held in the early 1980s and the aircraft was authorized regular operations in 1984. By 1997 all had been retired.[14]
The Tu-154M and Tu-154M Lux are the most highly upgraded version, which first flew in 1982 and entered mass production in 1984. It uses more fuel-efficient Soloviev D-30KU-154 turbofans. Together with significant aerodynamic refinement, this led to much lower fuel consumption and therefore longer range, as well as lower operating costs. The aircraft has new double-slotted (instead of triple-slotted) flaps, with an extra 36-degree position (in addition to existing 15, 28 and 45-degree positions on older versions), which allows reduction of noise on approach. It also has a relocated auxiliary power unit and numerous other improvements. Maximum takeoff weight increased first to 100,000 kg (220,462 lb), then to 102,000 kg (224,872 lb). Some aircraft are certified to 104,000 kg (229,281 lb). About 320 were manufactured. Mass production ended in 2006, though limited manufacturing continued as of January 2009.(photo link) No new airframes have been built since the early 1990s, and production since then involved assembling airplanes from components on hand.[15] Chinese Tu-154MD electronic intelligence aircraft carries a large-size synthetic aperture radar (SAR) under its mainframe.[16]
Cosmonaut Trainer. This was a Salon VIP aircraft modified to train cosmonauts to fly the Buran reusable spacecraft, the Soviet equivalent of the US Space Shuttle. The Tu-154 was used because the Buran required a steep descent, and the Tu-154 was capable of replicating that. The cabin featured trainee workstations, one of which was the same as the Buran's flightdeck. The forward baggage compartment was converted into a camera bay, because the aircraft was also used to train cosmonauts in observation and photographic techniques.[17]
Tu-154M-ON Monitoring Aircraft
Germany modified one of the Tu-154s it had on hand from the former East German Air Force into an observation airplane. This airplane was involved with the Open Skies inspection flights. It was converted at the Elbe Aircraft Plant (Elbe Flugzeugwerke) in Dresden, and flew in 1996. After two dozen monitoring missions, it was lost in a mid-air collision in 1997.[18]
The Russians also converted a Tu-154M to serve as an Open Skies Monitoring aircraft. They used the Tu-154M-LK-1, and converted it to a Tu-154M-ON. When the aircraft is not flying over North America, it is used to ferry cosmonauts around. The Chinese are also believed to have converted one Tu-154 to an electronic countermeasures aircraft.[19]
Design of this variant started in 1994, but the first aircraft were not delivered until 1998. It is an upgraded version with Western avionics, including the Flight Management Computer, GPS, EGPWS, TCAS, and other modern systems. The airplane could carry up to 157 passengers. The cabin featured an automatic oxygen system and larger overhead bins. Only three were produced, as payment of debts owed by Russia to Slovakia. Three aircraft were delivered in 1998 to Slovak Airlines, and sold back to Russia in 2003.[20]
A Tu-154 converted into a testbed for alternative fuels; it first flew in 1988 and was used until the fall of the Soviet Union, after which it was put in storage.
Initial designation of the Tu-154M.
Proposed stretched version of Tu-154.
Proposed shortened version of Tu-154.


Civil operators

Rossiya Airlines Tupolev Tu-154M at Vnukovo International Airport, Moscow, Russia.

UTair Aviation Tu-154M

Gazpromavia Tu-154M

Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise Tu-154M

Belavia Tupolev Tu-154M

Kazaviaspas Tupolev Tu-154M

Tupolev Tu-154

As of 26 March 2012 104 Tupolev Tu-154 aircraft (all variants) remained in airline service.[21][22] As of 20 February 2011 in Iran, all the remaining numbers of this aircraft were grounded after two recent incidents.[23][24] Major operators include:

Airline In Service
North Korea Air Koryo 2
Kyrgyzstan Air Manas 2
Russia Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise 7
Azerbaijan Azerbaijan Airlines 2
Belarus Belavia 4
Russia Gazpromavia 4
Kazakhstan Kaz Air Trans 1
Kazakhstan Kazaviaspas 1
Russia Kosmos Airlines 3
Russia Rossiya 6
Tajikistan Tajik Air 2
Russia Tatarstan Airlines 3
Azerbaijan Turan Air 5
Russia UTair Aviation 5
Russia Vladivostok Air 3
Russia Yakutia Airlines 4
Total: 53

Former civil operators

Past and present operators:
Abakan Air Enterprise, Aerokuznetsk, Aeroservice Kazakhstan, Aerotrans, Aerovolga, Air Georgia, Air Great Wall, Air Savari, AJT, Amur Avia, Asian Star, Aviaprad, Aviaprima, AVL Arkhangel, Baltic Express, Barnaul Air, Bratsk Air, Chelal, Chernomoravia, China Glory, China Xinjiang, Chita Avia, Diamond Sakha, East Line, Elk Estonian, Georgia Air Prague, Gomel UAD, Imair, Iron Dragonfly, Khabarovsk Aero, Latpass, Macedonia Airservice, Murmansk Air, Nizhny Novgorod Air, Orbi Georgian, Sakha Avia, Surgut Avia, Tomsk Air, Transeuropean, Turanair, Tyumen Airlines, Ulyanovsk Airlines, Vitair.

Afghanistan Afghanistan
  • Ariana Afghan Airlines
  • Albanian Airlines
  • Armenian Airlines
  • Air Via
  • Balkan Bulgarian Airlines
  • BH Air
  • Bulgarian Air Charter
  • Government of Bulgaria
  • Hemus Air
 People's Republic of China
  • Civil Aviation Administration of China
  • China Northwest Airlines
  • China Southwest Airlines
  • China United Airlines
  • Sichuan Airlines
  • Cubana
 Czech Republic
  • Government of Czech Republic
  • CSA Czechoslovak Airlines
  • Government of Czechoslovakia
  • Daallo Airlines
  • Egyptair
  • Transair Georgia
  • Malev Hungarian Airlines
  • Pannon Airlines
  • Bon Air
  • Caspian Airlines
  • HESA (Operating Armita Labs that are Tu-154 converted to flying laboratories)[25]
  • Iran Air Tours (14 in storage; unknown if they will be airworthy again.)
  • Kish Air
  • Mahan Air
  • Atyrau Airways
  • Kazakhstan Airlines
  • Sayakhat Airlines
  • Libyan Arab Airlines
  • Avioimpex
  • Macedonian Air Services
  • MAT Macedonian Airlines
  • Aerocom
  • Air Moldova
  • MIAT Mongolian Airlines
  • Aeronica
  • Pakistan International Airlines
  • Shaheen Air
  • LOT Polish Airlines
  • Government of Romania
  • Abakan-Avia
  • Aeroflot
  • Aero Rent
  • Airlines 400
  • airline
  • Aviaenergo
  • airline
  • Baikal Airlines
  • BAL Bashkirian Airlines
  • Bural
  • Continental Airways
  • Enkor
  • Jet-2000
  • KD Avia
  • KrasAir
  • Kuban Airlines
  • Mavial Magadan Airlines
  • Nordavia
  • Omskavia
  • Orenair
  • Perm Airlines
  • Polet Airlines
  • Pulkovo Aviation Enterprise
  • airline
  • Russian Sky Airlines
  • S7 Airlines
  • Samara Airlines
  • Sibaviatrans
  • Transaero
  • Tyva Airlines
  • Ural Airlines
  • Slovak Airlines
  • Air Somalia
  • Syrianair
  • Active Air
  • Greenair
  • Holiday Airlines
  • Air Ukraine
  • Odessa Airlines
  • Alyemda

Military operators

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Russian Air Force Tupolev Tu-154B-2

Slovak Government Flying Service Tupolev Tu-154M

Kyrgyzstan Government Tupolev Tu-154M

This Polish military VIP transport Tu-154M Lux aircraft from the 36th Special Air Transport Regiment, at Warsaw Frederic Chopin Airport before it was retired. The other one crashed in heavy fog at Smolensk North Airport on April 10, 2010, killing all occupants, including the Polish President.

Armenian Air Force
Government of Azerbaijan (1 Tu-154M leased from Azerbaijan Airlines)
Belarus Air Force (1 Tu-154M leased from Belavia)
Bulgarian Air Force One 154B retired 1988; one 154M retired April 2010, replaced by A319 CFM
Cuban Air Force – retired
Czechoslovakian Air Force (passed on to successor states)
 Czech Republic
Czech Air Force (replaced by Airbus A319CJ)
 East Germany
East German Air Force (passed on to FRG)
German Air Force (taken over from East Germany; 1 lost in mid-air collision, the other one sold)
Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Military of Kyrgyzstan (2 leased from Air Manas)
Mongolian Air Force – retired
 North Korea
Korean People's Air Force (4 Tu-154B-2 leased from Air Koryo)
 People's Republic of China
People's Liberation Army Air Force
Polish Air Force – 1 Tu-154M was retired in 2011, 1 Tu-154M crashed in 2010.
Russian Air Force (16 in service)
Slovak Government Flying Service (2 in service)
Military of Turkmenistan – 2 Tu-154B-2 retired
Ukrainian Air Force – retired
 Soviet Union
Soviet Air Force (passed on to successor states)
Military of Uzbekistan – retired, replaced by Boeing 767

Incidents and accidents

As of January 2011, since 1970 there have been 110 serious incidents involving the Tu-154,[26] and 69 hull losses, 30 of which did not involve fatalities.[27] Of the fatal incidents, five resulted from terrorist or military action (two other war-time losses were non fatal), several from poor runway conditions in winter (including one in which the airplane struck snow plows on the runway), cargo overloading in the lapse of post-Soviet federal safety standards, and mid-air collisions due to faulty air traffic control. Other incidents resulted from mechanical problems (two cases prior to 2001), running out of fuel on unscheduled routes, pilot errors (including inadequate flight training for new crews), and cargo fires; several accidents remain unexplained. The Tu-154 is described as having an average (or better than expected) safety record considering its length of service and heavy use in demanding conditions where other airliners are unable to operate.[4] On January 2, 2011, Russia's Federal Transport Oversight Agency advised airlines to stop using remaining examples of the Tu-154 (B variant) until the fatal fire incident in Surgut had been investigated.[28] Its operation in Iran ceased in February 2011 due to a number of crashes and incidents involving the type (almost 9% of all Tu-154 losses have occurred in Iran). This grounding compounded the effects of US embargo on civil aircraft parts, substantially decreasing the number of airworthy aircraft in the Iranian civil fleet.[29] In 2010 there were two fatal losses of the Tu-154 due to pilot error and/or weather conditions (a Polish presidential jet attempting a rural airfield landing in heavy fog, see 2010 Polish Air Force Tu-154 crash, and a Russian-registered plane that suffered engine stall after a crew member accidentally de-activated a fuel transfer pump). Following these accidents, in March 2011 the Russian Federal Bureau of Aviation recommended a withdrawal of remaining Tu-154M from service.[30] In December 2010, Uzbekistan Airways also declared that it will cease to operate Tu-154s from 2011.[31]

Tail number Location Fatalities Brief description
19.02.1973 Soviet Union CCCP-85023 Czech Republic Prague 66/100 Landed 470 m short of the runway
03.1973 Soviet Union n.d. Soviet Union near Kiev 0/n.d. Crashed
07.05.1973 Soviet Union CCCP-85030 Soviet Union Vnukovo 0/6 Crashed during training flight
10.07.1974 Egypt SU-AXB Egypt Cairo 6/6 Crashed during training flight
30.09.1975 Hungary HA-LCI Lebanon Beirut 60/60 Crashed in the sea on final approach in clear weather, allegedly shot down by one or two air to air missiles fired by either IDF or SDF forces.
01.06.1976 Soviet Union CCCP-85102 Equatorial Guinea Malabo 46/46 Crashed into a mountain on final approach
1976 Soviet Union CCCP-85020 Soviet Union Kiev 0/n.d. Rough landing, written off. Now in museum
02.12.1977 Bulgaria LZ-BTN Libya Benghazi 59/165 Unable to land in dense fog the plane ran out of fuel searching another airfield and crash-landed
23.03.1978 Bulgaria LZ-BTB Syria near Damascus 4/4 Crashed on final approach
19.05.1978 Soviet Union CCCP-85169 Soviet Union Tver oblast 4/134 Fuel supply turned off due to flight engineer error, crash-landed in field
18.02.1978 Soviet Union CCCP-85087 Soviet Union Novosibirsk 0/n.d. Fire onboard
01.03.1980 Soviet Union CCCP-85103 Soviet Union Orenburg 0/161 Rough landing
07.07.1980 Soviet Union CCCP-85355 Soviet Union Alma-Ata 164/164 Crashed at take-off
07.08.1980 Romania YR-TPH  Mauritania 1/168 Ditched 300 m short of runway
08.10.1980 Soviet Union CCCP-85321 Soviet Union Chita 0/n.d. Rough landing
13.06.1981 Soviet Union CCCP-85029 Soviet Union Bratsk 0/n.d. Overran on landing, fuselage broke into two
16.11.1981 Soviet Union CCCP-85480 Soviet Union Norilsk 99/167 Rough landing 470 m short of runway due to crew errors
21.10.1981 Hungary HA-LCF Czech Republic Prague 0/81 Rough landing due to crew error
11.10.1984 Soviet Union CCCP-85243 Soviet Union Omsk 4+174/179 Collided with maintenance vehicles on landing due to controller error
23.12.1984 Soviet Union CCCP-85338 Soviet Union Krasnoyarsk 110/111 Engine fire and hydraulics fault. One occupant reportedly survived the crash according Aviation Safety Network.
10.07.1985 Soviet Union CCCP-85311 Soviet Union Uchkuduk 200/200 Overloaded plane stalled and crashed due to crew errors
1986 People's Democratic Republic of Yemen 7O-ACN People's Democratic Republic of Yemen Aden n.d. Overran on landing, never repaired
21.05.1986 Soviet Union CCCP-85327 Soviet Union Domodedovo 0/175 Deformation of fuselage due to crew errors during flight
18.01.1988 Soviet Union CCCP-85254 Soviet Union Krasnovodsk 11/143 Rough landing, plane broke into two
08.03.1988 Soviet Union CCCP-85413 Soviet Union Veshchevo 9/n.d. Blown up by hijackers (Ovechkin family)
24.09.1988 Soviet Union CCCP-85479 Syria Aleppo 0/168 Broke into two on landing, was caught by wind shear
24.09.1988 Soviet Union CCCP-85617 Soviet Union Norilsk 0/n.d. Rough landing, turned into training mock-up
13.01.1989 Soviet Union CCCP-85067 Liberia Monrovia 0/n.d. Aborted take-off and runway overrun due to overloading
09.02.1989 Romania YR-TPJ Romania Bucharest 5/5 Crashed at take-off due to engine failure
20.10.1990 Soviet Union CCCP-85268 Soviet Union Kutaisi 0/171 Nosegear collapsed due to overloading
17.11.1990 Soviet Union CCCP-85664 Czech Republic Velichovky, Czech Republic 0/6 Fire of cargo on board, the plane burned out after emergency landing and broken into several pieces
23.05.1991 Soviet Union CCCP-85097 Soviet Union Leningrad 2+13/178 Rough landing, nosegear collapsed and plane broke into two
14.09.1991 Cuba CU-T1227 Mexico Mexico City 0/112 Overran on landing
05.06.1992 Bulgaria LZ-BTD Bulgaria Varna 0/130 Overran on landing in heavy rain
18.06.1992 Russia RA-85282 Russia Bratsk 1+0/0 Burned out during refueling
18.06.1992 Russia RA-85234 Russia Bratsk 0/0 Burned out in the same incident
20.07.1992 Georgia (country) 4L-85222 Georgia (country) Tbilisi 4+24/24 Crashed at take-off due to overloading
01.08.1992 Afghanistan YA-TAP Afghanistan Kabul 0/0 Destroyed in the airport by mortar fire
05.09.1992 Ukraine UR-85269 Ukraine Kiev 0/147 Rough landing with left gear still retracted
13.10.1992 Russia RA-85528 Russia Vladivostok 0/67 The plane was unable to take-off due to overloading
05.12.1992 Armenia EK-85105 Armenia Erevan 0/154 Overran on landing
19.01.1993 Uzbekistan UK-85533 India Delhi 0/165 Rough landing due to crew error
08.02.1993 Iran EP-ITD Iran near Tehran 2+131/131 Mid-air collision with Iranian Air Force Su-24
22.09.1993 Georgia (country) 4L-85163 Georgia (country) Sukhumi 108/132 Shot down by missile
23.09.1993 Georgia (country) 4L-85359 Georgia (country) Sukhumi 0/0 Damaged by shelling, never repaired
25.12.1993 Russia RA-85296 Chechen Republic of Ichkeria Grozny 0/172 Rough landing, nosegear collapsed. Destroyed by air strike in 1994
03.01.1994 Russia RA-85656 Russia Irkutsk 1+125/125 Engine fire at take-off, hydraulics failed
06.06.1994 China B-2610 China Xian 160/160 Disintegrated in mid-air due to errors in auto-pilot settings
21.01.1995 Kazakhstan UP-85455 Pakistan Karachi 0/117 The plane was unable to take-off due to overloading
07.12.1995 Russia RA-85164 Russia near Khabarovsk 98/98 Asymmetrical fuel supply from wing tanks, the captain mistakenly increased the right heel and the plane crashed
29.08.1996 Russia RA-85621 Norway Longyearbyen 141/141 Crashed in the mountain on final approach due to crew error
13.09.1997 Germany 11+02 Namibia Namibia 24/24 Mid-air collision with USAF C-141
15.12.1997 Tajikistan EY-85281 United Arab Emirates Sharja 85/86 Landed short of runway, crew error
29.08.1998 Cuba CU-T1264 Ecuador Quito 10+70/91 Aborted take-off, overran and caught fire
24.02.1999 China B-2622 China Ruian 61/61 Crashed on final approach due to technical failure
04.07.2000 Hungary HA-LCR Greece Saloniki 0/76 Accidental gear-up touchdown during the landing at Thessaloniki, skidded on runway, but able to take off and land normally after a go-around.
03.07.2001 Russia RA-85845 Russia Irkutsk 145/145 Stalled and crashed on final approach due to crew errors
04.10.2001 Russia RA-85693 Black sea 78/78 Mid-air destruction of unknown cause
12.02.2002 Iran EP-MBS Iran Khorramabad 119/119 Crashed on final approach
20.02.2002 Iran EP-LBX Iran Mashhad 0/n.d. Rough landing, sent to Vnukovo for repair where a nosegear collapsed
01.07.2002 Russia RA-85816  Germany 2+69/69 Mid-air collision with Boeing 757 of DHL Aviation due to negligence on the part of skyguide air traffic control
24.08.2004 Russia RA-85556 Russia Millerovo 46/46 Exploded in mid-air by suicide bomber
22.08.2006 Russia RA-85185 Ukraine near Donetsk 170/170 Stalled and crashed due to attempt to fly over storm front at critical altitude
01.09.2006 Iran EP-MCF Iran Mashhad 29/147 The tyre blew out on landing, the plane skidded off the runway and caught fire
30.06.2008 Russia RA-85667 Russia St Petersburg 0/112 Engine fire at take-off, take off was aborted and the plane written off
15.07.2009 Iran EP-CPG Iran near Qazvin 168/168 Engine fire and explosion, the plane lost control and crashed
24.01.2010 Russia RA-85787 Iran Mashhad 0/170 Rough landing, the plane broke up and caught fire
10.04.2010 Poland 101 Russia Smolensk 96/96 Crashed on final approach in thick fog on an airfield with no ILS. President Lech Kaczyński and other high-ranking officials were on board and died in the crash.
07.09.2010 Russia RA-85684 Russia Izhma 0/81 Emergency landing at remote airfield after general electrical failure at 34,800 ft, overran the small runway and sustained minor damage with no injuries.[32] In March 2011 it was flown back to Samara for structural inspection and rehabilitation.[33]
04.12.2010 Russia RA-85744 Russia Moscow 2/170 An emergency landing after two engines failed shortly after take-off; full of fuel. Overran the runway and broke up into three. The accident investigation revealed that a crew member had mistakenly switched off a fuel transfer pump thereby causing fuel-starvation and subsequent engine stall[34]
01.01.2011 Russia RA-85588 Russia Surgut 3/124 Fire onboard and subsequent explosion while taxiing for take-off, all three engines running.[35]

Preserved aircraft

  • CCCP-85020 (cn 71A020) at State Aviation Museum[36]
  • CCCP-85040 (cn 73A-040) Early versions of Tu-154. Preserved at Krivy Rig - Aviation Institute[37]


Measurement Tu-154B-2 Tu-154M
Cockpit crew Three/Four
Seating capacity 114–180
Length 48.0 metres (157 ft 6 in)
Wingspan 37.55 metres (123 ft 2 in)
Wing area 201.5 square metres (2,169 sq ft)
Height 11.4 metres (37 ft 5 in)
Maximum take-off weight 98,000 kilograms (216,000 lb) – 100,000 kilograms (220,000 lb) 102,000 kilograms (225,000 lb) – 104,000 kilograms (229,000 lb)
Empty weight 50,700 kilograms (111,800 lb) 55,300 kilograms (121,900 lb)
Maximum speed 950 km/h (510 kn)
Range fully loaded 2,500 km (1,300 nmi; 1,600 mi) 5,280 km (2,850 nmi; 3,280 mi)
Range with max fuel 3,900 km (2,100 nmi; 2,400 mi) 6,600 km (3,600 nmi; 4,100 mi)
Service ceiling 12,100 metres (39,700 ft)
Engine (x 3) Kuznetsov NK-8-2U Soloviev D-30KU-154
Max. thrust (x 3) 90 kN (20,000 lbf) each[38] 103 kN (23,148 lbf) each[38]
Max. fuel capacity 47,000 litres (10,000 imp gal; 12,000 US gal) 49,700 litres (10,900 imp gal; 13,100 US gal)

In popular culture

Tu-154's interior and exterior as the most common airliner appeared in many Soviet and Russian films.

Air Crew is the 1979 action film revolving around the exploits of a Soviet Tu-154 crew on an international flight, the first Soviet film in the disaster genre.

See also

  • Tupolev Tu-155
  • Tupolev Tu-204
  • Hawker Siddeley Trident
  • Lockheed L-1011 Tristar
  • McDonnell Douglas DC-9
  • Yakovlev Yak-42
  • List of airliners
  • S-duct
  • The Überlingen collision between BAL Bashkirian Airlines and a DHL cargo plane



  1. Rabinowitz, Jason (February 26, 2013). "Last Tupolev TU-154 Delivered – 16 Years After Production Ceases". Retrieved 12 December 2013. 
  2. "Aeroflot retires the legendary TU-154s". Flight Global. 2010-01-18. Retrieved 17 December 2010. 
  3. "Crash focuses attention on Tupolev-154". BBC News. 10 April 2010. Retrieved 26 May 2010. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 Tu-154: The backbone of Russian fleets BBC News
  5. Komissarov, p. 8
  6. Komissarov, pp. 5, 18
  7. Aviakor ends Tupolev Tu-154M production after fulfilling last order[dead link]
  8. "The Last Serial Tu-154 Was Delivered to the Representatives of Russian Defense Ministry". Vzglyad.Ru. 2013-02-19. Retrieved 19 February 2013. 
  9. Tu-154 Production Numbers
  10. "Наука и техника: Оружие: Шойгу получит последний самолет Ту-154М". Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  11. Komissarov, p. 21
  12. OKB Tupolev, A History of the Design Bureau and its Aircraft, Yefin Gordon and Vladimir Rigmant, translated by Alexander Boyd, edited by Dmitriy Komissarov (Hinckley, UK, 2005) ISBN 1-85780-214-4 p. 257.
  13. Komissarov, p. 27
  14. Komissarov, pp. 29–31
  15. Komissarov, p. 34
  16. " Tu154md Electronic Intelligence Aircraft". Retrieved 30 April 2011. 
  17. Komissarov, pp. 36–37
  18. Komissarov, pp. 38–39
  19. Komissarov, p. 40
  20. Komissarov, pp. 36, 144–145
  21. Photo search results
  22. AeroTransport Data Bank
  23. Iranian airlines fleet[dead link]
  24. Kramer, Andrew E. (21 June 2011). "It Danced Once, but More Often It Crashes". 
  25. "Iran unveils upgraded missile, five pieces of military hardware". Tehran Times. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  26. All incidents involving Tu-154 at Aviation Safety Database
  27. Incidents with hull-loss involving Tu-154 at Aviation Safety Database
  28. "Russian airlines should ground Tu-154s, watchdog says". BBC News. 2 January 2011. Retrieved 2 January 2011. 
  29. "از اول اسفند ارابه‌هاي مرگ در آسمان‌ها زمين‌گير مي‌شود url=". [dead link]
  30. Agencja zaleca wycofanie Tu-154M
  31. "Uzbekistan Airways renews aircraft fleet url=". [dead link]
  32. Alrosa Tu-154 overruns after emergency landing in Russia , FlightGlobal, 2010-09-07
  33. Tu-154 back in the air six months after miracle landing in taiga, TV network, 2011-03-24
  34. BBC News – Two dead as engine failure airliner lands in Moscow. (2010-12-04). Retrieved on 2010-12-10.
  35. Russian Passenger Jet Explodes; 3 Dead. (2011-01-01).
  36. "Photos: Tupolev Tu-154 Aircraft Pictures". 2006-06-08. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  37. "Photo Aeroflot Tupolev TU-154 CCCP-85040". 2006-10-07. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  38. 38.0 38.1 Originally measured as 10,500 kgf.


  • Dmitriy Komissarov, Tupolev Tu-154, The USSR's Medium-Range Jet Airliner, (Hinckley, UK, 2007) ISBN 1857802411
  • Yefin Gordon and Vladimir Rigmant, OKB Tupolev, A History of the Design Bureau and its Aircraft, translated by Alexander Boyd, edited by Dmitriy Komissarov (Hinckley, UK, 2005) ISBN 1-85780-214-4

External links

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