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Tu-143 Reis.jpg
Tu-143 "Reis"
Role Remote controlled, UAV
Manufacturer Tupolev
First flight 1970
Introduction 1973
Status Active
Primary user Soviet Union
Produced 1970–1989
Number built 950
Developed from Tupolev Tu-141
Developed into Tupolev Tu-243

The Tupolev Tu-143 Reys (Flight or Trip, Russian: Рейс) was a Soviet reconnaissance drone in service with the Soviet Red Army and with a number of its Warsaw Pact and Middle East allies during the late 1970s and 1980s. It contained a reconnaissance pod, that was retrieved after flight, and from which imagery was retrieved.[1]



Tu-143 with launcher

The Tu-143 was introduced in 1976 and strongly resembled the Tu-141, but was substantially scaled-down. It was a short-range (60–70 kilometer) tactical reconnaissance system and had a low-level flight capability. The Tu-143 was truck-launched with RATO booster, recovered by parachute, and powered by a TR3-117 turbojet with 5.8 kN (590 kgf, 267 lbf) thrust. The initial version carried film cameras, but later versions carried a TV or radiation detection payload, with data relayed to a ground station over a datalink. Some 950 units were produced in the 1970s and 1980s.

The Tu-143 was used by Syria in reconnaissance missions over Israel and Lebanon during the 1982 Lebanon War, as well as by Soviet forces in Afghanistan during the Soviet war in Afghanistan.

M-143 variant[edit]

A target drone version, the M-143, was introduced in the mid-1980s.

Tu-243 variant[edit]

The Tu-143 was followed into service in the late 1980s by the similar but improved "Tu-243 Reys-D", with a 25 cm (10 inch) fuselage stretch, to provide greater fuel capacity and about twice the range; an uprated TR3-117 engine with 6.28 kN (640 kgf, 1,410 lbf) thrust; and improved low-altitude guidance.

Tu-300 variant[edit]

Since 1995, Tupolev began promoting the further refined "Tu-300 Korshun", which resembles its predecessors but is fitted with a nose antenna dome and nose fairings for modern sensors and electronic systems. It also features a centerline pylon for a sensor pod or munitions. Financial issues forced a halt to development at the end of the 1990s, but work was resumed in 2007.


Current operators[edit]

 North Korea
Korean People's Air Force
  • Used as targets (in service as of 2011)[2]
  • One Tu-143 found by rebels in a field in August 1, 2014 [4]

Former operators[edit]

 Czech Republic
VR-3 Rejs, retired in 1995
VR-3 was in service from 1985, passed to Czech Republic and Slovakia
(Retired from service)
VR-3 Rejs, retired
 Soviet Union
Passed to Russia and Ukraine on dissolution of the USSR


Tupolev TU-143 Reys:

  • wingspan 2.24 m (7 ft 4 in)
  • length 8.06 m (26 ft 5 in)
  • height 1.54 m (5 ft 1 in)
  • launch weight 1,230 kg (2,710 lb)
  • maximum speed 950 km/h (515 kn, 590 mph)
  • service ceiling 5,000 m (16,400 ft)
  • range 200 km (110 nmi, 125 mi)


This article contains material that originally came from the web article Unmanned Aerial Vehicles by Greg Goebel, which exists in the Public Domain.

  1. ^ The Encyclopedia of the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A Political, Social, and Military History: A Political, Social, and Military History, ABC-CLIO, 12 May 2008, by Spencer C. Tucker, Priscilla Mary Roberts, page 1055
  2. ^ "Воздушные мишени – вторая жизнь зенитных ракет — ОРУЖИЕ РОССИИ, Информационное агентство". Arms-expo.ru. Retrieved 2013-09-03. 
  3. ^ UAV Forum | Users
  4. ^ Tu-143 Found by Rebels in Ukraine

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tupolev_Tu-143 — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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Sat, 02 Aug 2014 02:00:00 -0700

The weird aircraft, marked with Ukrainian insignia, has since then identified as the Tupolev Tu-143 Reys drone. It was used in the Red Army during the late 1970s and 1980s and several units have allegedly been maintained in a satisfactory state by the ...
Gizmodo India
Sun, 17 Aug 2014 11:11:15 -0700

This weekend, Ukraine's band of pro-Russian militants bagged themselves a big old bird when they knocked this Soviet-era reconnaissance UAV out of the skies over Shahtersk. "Today we have shot down 'something' over our skies," an unidentified fighter ...

An ninh thủ đô

An ninh thủ đô
Sat, 02 Aug 2014 08:57:00 -0700

Chiếc máy bay kỳ lạ mang nhãn hiệu của quân đội Ukraine sau đó được xác định là một chiếc máy bay không người lái Tupolev Tu-143 Reys từ thời Liên Xô. Máy bay được Hồng quân Liên Xô sử dụng trong cuối những năm 1970 và 1980. Một số đơn vị của ...


Mon, 04 Aug 2014 05:33:45 -0700

Οι εικόνες από το Tupolev Tu-143 κάνουν τον γύρο του Διαδικτύου. Εκπρόσωπος των αυτονομιστών ανέφερε πως το UAV πραγματοποίησε αναγνωριστική πτήση σε υψόμετρο 2.000 μέτρων και κατερρίφθη μέσω αντιαεροπορικού πυραυλικού συστήματος.


Sat, 02 Aug 2014 05:10:57 -0700

Malheureusement pour les pro-russes, la tentative d'intox n'a pas durée longtemps et beaucoup de personnes ayant vu les images ont immédiatement reconnu un drone de reconnaissance Tupolev Tu-143 Reys, de conception soviétique, datant de la fin des ...
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Sat, 02 Aug 2014 21:18:45 -0700

Theo RT, chiếc UAV kể trên là loại Tupolev Tu-143, từng được Hồng quân Liên Xô sử dụng trong những năm 1970, 1980. Sau khi Liên Xô tan rã, quân đội Ukraine vẫn tiếp tục sử dụng loại máy bay này. Cũng trong ngày 2/8, theo Itar-Tass, trả lời phỏng vấn ...

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