Technical data
Type TB-4, ANT-16
Function Bomber
Year 1933
Crew 12
Engines 6*740/830hp M-34
Length 32.0m
Height 11.7m
Wingspan 54.0m
Wing area 422m2
Empty weight 21400kg
Loaded weight 33280kg
Wing Load (kg/m2) 78.3
Power load (kg/hp) 7.4
Speed at 0m 200km/h
Speed at 3000m 188km/h
Landing Speed 105km/h
Landing Roll 400m
Takeoff Roll 800m 35sec
Operational Range 1000km
Ceiling 2750m
1000m 12.4min
2000m 34.0min
Fuel+Oil 4950kg
Guns 4*20mm cannons
10*7.62mm machineguns
Bombs (normal) 4000kg (inside)
Bombs (overload) 40*250kg or 20*500kg

TB-4, ANT-16 by A.N.Tupolev

28k b/w "History of aircraft construction in the USSR", Vol.1 p.461

Development of TB-3 heavy bomber with doubled takeoff weight and doubled wing area. Four of six engines were installed in the thick (2m!) wing, two - in a tandem above the fuselage. Project started even before the TB-3 was ready, TB-4 became the first aircraft built by ZOK.

TB-4 was built following dominating theory stating that efficiency of bomber increases with its payload. Low speed had to be compensated by strong defensive weapons and capability of huge aircraft to withstand serious punishment from enemy fighters. Even heavier aircraft were considered (to emerge later as ANT-26 and ANT-28 projects), with wingspan approaching 100m and payload of 25tons.

The aircraft novelties included two enormous 5x1.8x1.8m bomb bays in the fuselage (designed by K.P.Sveshnikov and V.M.Myasichev). Such a bomb bays made a 'World Record' - none other contemporary bomber was even close.

First flight was performed by M.M.Gromov on July 3, 1933. Flight test program (pilots Riazanov, Stefanovsky, Nukhtikov) was fulfilled in a short time - on September 29, 1933. Performance of TB-4 was found poor. In-wing engines wasted too much power to blow 2m thick wing, tandem installation was inefficient (typical for tandems), and as a result aircraft was badly underpowered.

Installation of more powerful 1250hp M-35 engine was suggested, but never done.

TB-4 was not accepted for production, but gained experience helped to finish even larger ANT-20 "Maksim Gorky" in record short time.



ANT-20 "Maksim Gorky"

  • "History of aircraft construction in the USSR", Vol.1 p.461-462;
  • TB-4, ANT-16
  • ANT-16 / TB-4 at the Virtual Aircraft Museum
  • TB-4, Tupolev
  • ANT-14, Tupolev

  • Created January 25, 1996
    Modified February 04, 1999
    by Alexandre Savine
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