The Soviet Unions answer to the Lockheed U-2.
The Myasishchev M-55 (NATO reporting name: Mystic) is a high altitude reconnaissance aircraft developed by the Soviet Union's Myasishchev design bureau. It is similar in both its mission and overall wing design to the American Lockheed U-2, but with a twin boom fuselage and tail surface design. It is a development of the M-17. Differences include two turbofan engines instead of one and greater maximum take-off weight.
On September 21, 1993, an M-55 piloted by Victor Vasenkov from Akhtubinsk airfield reached a class record altitude of 21,360 m (70,078 feet). (The M-55 being in a heavier class than the M-17) The M-55 set a total of 15 FAI World Records, all of which still stand today.
A number of M-55 Geophysica remain in service, performing in research roles. One M-55 took part in a study of the Arctic stratosphere.
Canadian Aviation Blog
Photo Credit: NHUNGDOICANH