ANT-16 (TB-4)
Role Heavy bomber
National origin Soviet Union
Manufacturer Tupolev
First flight 3 July 1933
Status Retired
Primary user Soviet Union
Number built One
Developed from Tupolev TB-3
Variants ANT-20

The Tupolev ANT-16 (also known as the TB-4; Russian: Тяжелый БомбардировщикHeavy Bomber) was an experimental heavy bomber aircraft designed and tested in the Soviet Union in the early 1930s.

Design and development

Conceptually representing evolution of the TB-3 bomber, the ANT-16 was designed under the doctrine that size and payload were more important for a bomber than speed because it would be able to protect itself with defensive armament.[1] The twin 5 by 1.8 by 1.8 metres (16.4 ft × 5.9 ft × 5.9 ft) bomb bays were the largest in the world at that time and presented many design challenges in order to preserve structural rigidity of the airframe.[1]

The sole prototype first flew on 3 July 1933 with M. M. Gromov at the controls. The test flight program was completed by 29 September 1933 with disappointing results. The two top-mounted engines performed poorly and a significant portion of thrust generated by the wing-mounted engines was absorbed by the two meter-thick (6 ft 7 in) wing. A proposal to re-equip the aircraft with Mikulin AM-35 engines of 933 kW (1,250 hp) was not implemented.[1] A second prototype was under construction, but was never finished[2] (construction stopped 2 July 1933); some of its parts were used in the ANT-20.

Specifications (ANT-16)

Data from The Osprey Encyclopedia of Russian Aircraft 1875-1995 [3]

General characteristics


188 km/h (117 mph; 102 kn) at 5,000 m (16,000 ft)
2,000 km (1,200 mi; 1,100 nmi) with 2,000 kg (4,409 lb) bomb-load
2,000 m (6,600 ft) in 34 minutes


See also

Related development


  1. ^ a b c Shavrov V.B. (1985). Istoriia konstruktskii samoletov v SSSR do 1938 g. (3 izd.) (in Russian). Mashinostroenie. ISBN 5-217-03112-3.
  2. ^ "The Tupolev Giants". AirVectors. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  3. ^ Gunston, Bill (1995). The Osprey Encyclopedia of Russian Aircraft 1875-1995. London: Osprey. pp. 393–394. ISBN 9781841760964.
  4. ^ "Tupolev ANT-16 / TB-4 - bomber".