digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















Tu-143 Reis.jpg
Tu-143 "Reys"
Role unmanned reconnaissance aircraft
Manufacturer Tupolev
First flight 1970
Introduction 1973
Status Active
Primary user Soviet Union
Produced 1970–1989
Number built 950
Developed from Tupolev Tu-141

The Tupolev Tu-143 Reys (Flight or Trip, Russian: Рейс) was a Soviet unmanned reconnaissance aircraft in service with the Soviet 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 JATO 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 Pro-Russian forces 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.

22 news items

The Aviationist (blog)

The Aviationist (blog)
Sat, 02 Aug 2014 05:01:50 -0700

... clashesDecember 2, 2014In "Rogue States". Pro-Russia separatists conducted first air strike in Ukraine using a Su-25 Frogfoot. Maybe....February 5, 2015In "Rogue States". Tags: Soviet Union, Tupolev Tu-141, Tupolev Tu-143, Ukraine, Ukrainian Air ...

Sputnik International

Sputnik International
Thu, 08 Oct 2015 04:49:24 -0700

The defense official explained that the air-launched Zenitsa combat drone was based on the Tupolev Tu-143 Reys (Flight) developed in the 1980s. The ground-launched Okhotnik-U (Hunter) project, meanwhile, is expected to be a tailless aircraft. Russian ...


Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:17:58 -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 ...

Aviation International News

Aviation International News
Thu, 08 May 2014 08:11:15 -0700

In theory, it might be an old Tupolev Tu-143 Reis reconnaissance UAV or a newer Tu-300 Korshun experimental UAV made during 1990s. But local media reported that the mysterious object bore greater similarity to the Skat. The Russian defense ministry ...

Sputnik Brasil

Sputnik Brasil
Thu, 08 Oct 2015 07:06:21 -0700

Dois fabricantes russos estão trabalhando em veículos aéreos não tripulados de combate médio e de longo alcance (UCAV). Os drones seriam capazes de voar a velocidades de até 500 milhas por hora (800 km/h), segundo informou à RIA Novosti um oficial ...

An ninh thủ đô

An ninh thủ đô
Thu, 08 Oct 2015 09:46:39 -0700

Ông giải thích rằng, máy bay chiến đấu không người lái Zenitsa phóng từ trên không được dựa trên mẫu UAV Tupolev Tu-143 Reys (Flight) được phát triển từ những năm 1980. Trong khi đó, dự án máy bay không người lái Okhotnik-U (Hunter) phóng từ mặt ...

Báo điện tử Kiến Thức

Báo điện tử Kiến Thức
Sat, 23 May 2015 23:33:32 -0700

... không người lái (UAV) thế hệ mới nhằm đáp ứng nhu cầu ngày càng tăng từ phía Quân đội Nga cho các nhiệm vụ trinh sát và chiến đấu trên không. Trong khi các mẫu UAV do Liên Xô phát triển như Yakovlev Pchela hay Tupolev Tu-143 đã trở nên lỗi thời.

RT en Español - Noticias internacionales

RT en Español - Noticias internacionales
Mon, 21 Jul 2014 10:34:14 -0700

En la República Popular de Donetsk las autodefensas han derribado este viernes un avión no tripulado cerca de la localidad de Shajtiorsk. Se trata de un Tupolev Tu-143, una serie limitada soviética de 1976 que todavía es utilizada por las autoridades ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight