Technical data
Type Tu-124
Function Passenger, transport
Year 1960
Crew 3 or 4
Engines 2 Soloviev D-20P
Takeoff Power 2*5400kg
Length 31.58m
Height 8.08m
Wingspan 25.55m
Wing area 119.37m2
Empty weight 22500kg
Loaded weight (max) 38000kg
Wing Load (kg/m2) 31.8
Maximum Speed at 8000m 970km/h
Cruising Speed 800 to 870km/h
Landing Speed 190km/h
Landing Distance 930m
Takeoff Distance 1030m
Range (with 1hour fuel reserve)
Half payload, max fuel 2100km
Max payload against 50km/h wind 1250km
Cruise Ceiling 11700m
1000m min
Fuel 13,500kg
Cabin size LxWxH 11.23x2.71x1.95m3
Seats 44 to 56
Cargo 6000kg

Tu-124, A.N.Tupolev KB ('Cookpot')

One of two T-124's on display at Datang Shan - China Aviation Museum, here 50257 in China Air Force marking. Aviation Photo's taken by Peter Bakema

The successful experience of Tu-104 airliner exploitation opened way to creation of short range jet liner. The work on the draft of new aircraft began in 1958 under leadership of S.M.Yeger, D.M.Markov, L.L.Kerber,K.V.Minker, B.M.Kondorsky, I.B.Babin. The dimensions of the plane were to be 1/4 less that Tu-104 with half of its mass. Wing trailing edge roots were extended, double-slotted flaps, automatic lift dumpers and large center-section airbrake improve takeoff and landing performance. Tu-124 was fitted with brake parachute for use in case of emergency landing.

Difference also was made in the interior design - modern plastic furnishing with strip light in the centre isle. Airliner was operated by crew of 3 (two pilots and navigator) with provision for second navigator or radio-operator.

Low pressure tires allowed grass field operation. Tu-124 was intended to replace the Il-14 on local lines, but failed. Old Ilyushin's workhorse was still far less demanding to airfield quality and much easier to maintain.

6k b/w drawing, courtesy of Sergey Andreev

Reduction of dimensions permitted to use Solovjov D-20P bypass turbojet (turbofan) engine. The decision of Ministry council N°786-378 about creation of new plane was issued on July 18 1958. Tu-124 appeared to be the first during the work on which the scale strength calculations method by A.M.Cheremukhin were applied. Those methods dramatically reduced the development time. The trial planes were built in Moscow, but the production was organized in Kharkov.

The first plane was completed in 1960. Factory trials began March 24 same year, and on March 29 the plane performed it's first flight. Commercial flights began on October 2, 1962 on route Moscow-Tallin.

The plane was in service up to early 70th when it was replaced by Tu-134.

110 civil airliners and 55 planes for air force were manufactured. Efforts to introduce Tu-124 on international market has little success - three to CZA (October 1964), three VIP variants to Indian Government (1966), two to Interflug (transferred to East Germany airforce) some to Iraq(?) and China(?). Despite aircraft had much better economical characteristics than Tu-104 predecessor, potential customers were waiting for arrival of the Tu-134 (to be first announced in 1964 as Tu-124A)...

Predecessors Modifications (serial) Modifications (version) Modifications (project) Developments
Tu-104 Tu-124 with 44 seats Tu-124 for 60 seats Tu-124 for 48 or 52 seats
Tu-124V for 56 seats Tu-124B with D-20P-125 engines Tu-124TS
Tu-127 military transport?? Tu-124K de lux saloon Tu-124SPS
Tu-124Sh-2 Tu-124Sh-1 Tu-124 VSTOL
Three b/w drawings, courtesy of Sergey Andreev
14k Used for background on this page. 6k 3k
References Links Links
  • "Russian aircraft since 1940" by Jean Alexander, p.389...391;
  • "Grani derznovennogo tvorchestva" by A.N.Tupolev
  • Tu-124 at the Virtual Aircraft Museum
  • Tu-124,
  • Tupolev 'Cookpot'
  • Aircraft accidents 1975-1979
  • Tupolev Tekniska Data
  • Tu-124 at 'Aviation from A to Z'
  • Tupolev aircraft
  • This Tu-16 page has brief note about Tu-124 and a picture
  • Civil Aviation Photos

  • Created January 25, 1996
    Modified November 17, 1999
    with help of Sergey Andreev
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