Re: Tu-144LL

Date:         29 Mar 98 23:09:30 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
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>I've just read an article (clari.world.europe.russia) on
>Tupolev's supersonic passenger jet Tu-144LL. It looks
>that the design produced very good preliminary results.
>Tupolev  claims the jet will be twice faster than today's
>passenger jets and the cost of flying will be just about
>20% higher. Anybody knows more about this aircraft?

The Tu-144LL is neither a new design nor a possible future SST.  It's
merely the 1960s era Soviet design, I believe the newer Tu-144D model
which has the Koliesov engines instead of the original Nk-144 engines,
brought back to life for use as a testbed in a partnership of Russia
and the US.  The HSCT (High Speed Civil Transport) is the project for
which this research is being done -- it's a long way off from even a
decision to build a prototype.

For more about the Tu-144, see Howard Moon's book Soviet SST (Orion
Books, 1989).  It's an excellent book on the subject, assuming you can
find it.  (A friend found my copy in a used book store.)

>It seems to me the two major problems with the passenger jets
>are speed and cabin noise.

Speed?!  Well, yes, the point of the HSCT is to go faster than today's
subsonic jets.

Cabin noise was an issue with the Tu-144 in large part because the
Soviets did not master some of the clever technology used in Concorde
to cool the airframe, and instead used massive air conditioning units.
These suckers apparently generated gale force winds and accompanying
noise.  Given better technology, this isn't a significant issue -- I've
not heard that Concorde's cabin is appreciably noisier than a subsonic
jetliner.

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