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The Beriev A-40 was conceived in 1983 and is the world's largest seaplane currently flying. Missions the aircraft was designed for include search and rescue, transportation, patrol and anti submarine warfare for the Russian Navy.
In civilian service, variants can be used as airliners, air tankers, and cargo carriers.
The aircraft has a fuselage optimized for water handling. It has an extremely sharp angle of entry for a smooth ride and better penetration of rough seas.
Its engines utilize a dual design with fan jet economy and the power of turbojets during take off.
The Beriev A-40 is the current world record holder for time to climb and speed for seaplanes in its class.
As of this writing, production of the aircraft has been put on hold. Like many projects in Russia, this one too is awaiting additional funding.
Thus far only two Beriev A-40 prototype aircraft have been produced.
Sergio Vergara's Beriev A-40.
The Beriev A-40 would make one heck of a jet powered seaplane. It should be quite an attraction flying from a small lake. However, it appears to be rarely modeled as a rc airplane.
We used to see plans on eBay for the Be-200 version of the Beriev A-40, but haven’t in a while. It had a 78" wingspan and could be powered by ducted fans or turbines.
Pictured above and immediately below is the Beriev A-40 by master modeler Sergio Vergara. It has a 73" wingspan with a length of 78". Sergio powers it with twin Typhoon 600 brushless motors spinning Wemotec mini fans. All up weight is about 9 lbs.
The next two pictures below are of the great looking Beriev A-40 (Be-200) scratch built by Thomas Blankeney. Its wingspan is 38" with construction from balsa and ply. Power comes from a pair of Feigao brushless motors turning 40 mm fans. Weight is about 1 lb. 2 oz.
We have seen a two channel Beriev A-40 by Astro Model. It has a 44" wingspan with steering by engine thrust differential. With the engines near the fuselage, we wonder how effective the steering can be. Altitude is controlled by engine thrust. The rc airplane has no elevator. Power comes from a pair of electric ducted fans. We can't verify the quality. The Astro Model rc Beriev A-40 Albatross is sold by a number of retailers and there are large differences in price. If you are interested in this type of rc airplane it would probably pay to shop around.
Beriev A-40 seen from below.
Thomas Blakeney's Beriev A-40.
The Beriev A-40 in flight.
If you know of a quality Beriev A-40, please email us about it.