It was a waste of space and effort.
It had all the usual sea plane seawater corrosion problems and problems with
saltwater spray being ingested into the turbines. Also problems in rough
A short look at history books would have told them this before they started
Typical failed socialist ego project.
Meanwhile the Russian people starved.
They were not designed as sea planes, but as high speed attack boats.
They also had the advantages that they could ignore ice and had limited
ground crossing ability. Their main problems were longitudinal
instability and, as they went out of use before GLONASS was properly
Which was not that much of a problem in their designed areas of use; the
Black Sea and the Baltic.
That is where development and testing took place and, in the event,
where most were seen. The Soviet Navy originally ordered 120 vessels
and, had they been built, they would have been deployed in the Black Sea
fleet and in the Baltic fleet. There was also talk of possible use in
some Arctic regions.
And one of the interior photographs of that single completed vehicle
shows lots & lots of (temporary) data recording devices in place.
(See http://tiny.cc/pyocbx - just over half way down the page)
That suggests it was a prototype and still in development when it got
Since this thing operated in ground effect just above the water, at say
200 km/hr, I suspect that the vibration induced by flying over the waves
would have shaken any loose filling out of your head.
All the crew stations are extensively padded which suggests the same
There was a suggestion many years ago to use something like it to cross
the channel - the idea was to use radar to make sure there was a clear
path across and then whizz over at four hundred miles an hour or more.
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