The first installation batch of NK-32 engines of the second stage was delivered for the modernized Tu-160M
The United Engine Corporation (UEC, part of the Rostec State Corporation) has begun mass production of the NK-32-02 engines.
Currently, UEC conducts qualification and service life tests of NK-32 series 02 engines at stands. "The newly manufactured engines meet the requirements of the design and regulatory documentation stated in the tactical and technical assignment," the corporation stressed. The UEC is completing the modernization of production at the UEC-Kuznetsov enterprise, which was required to start the serial production of the second stage NK-32 engines for the modernized Tu-160M strategic missile carriers. "Implementation of measures to organize serial production of NK-32 series 02 engines has been completed. The need to ensure an increase in production throughput entailed a large-scale reconstruction of production," the UEC said.
After trying to understand what was going on with the Tu-160, this is roughly what I got:So it appears that the reintroduction of newly manufactured NK-32 engines has been established, with the model called 02.
No idea what this model entails.
Reading on this matter over the last year or so, reports are that they have re-established the specialised manufacturing capacity to fabricate the massive titanium central fuselage/wing structure that is the core of the airframe.
If this is the case, they would only do this if new airframes are to be manufactured, and not simply finishing off existing unfinished airframes, in my opinion.
So, reading the above posts, it appears that the existing airframes (2 to 4 remaining?) that were unfinished will be completed to Tu-160M specifications, which will incorporate M2 features, and whilst this is going on, preparation for newly manufactured M2 models will be ongoing?
If so, this is a very sensible approach.