The Ka-29TB (Transportno Boyevoy) is a dedicated assault transport derivative of the Ka-27 family, intended especially for the support of naval amphibious operations and featuring a substantially changed airframe. Its development commenced in 1973. The prototype made its first flight in 1976. Trials were completed in 1979 and production began in 1984. The type entered service in 1985. The first example was seen by Western observers on the assault ship Ivan Rogov in 1987 in Mediterranean sea. The Ka-29TB was initially assumed to be the Ka-27B, resulting in the allocation of the Western reporting name Helix-B. Many of the new variants went unnoticed, and the Ka-29TB was initially thought to be a minimum-change version of the basic Ka-27PL anti-submarine warfare helicopter, but without radar. In fact it was an entirely new machine. About 59 of these helicopters were produced. These are in service with Russian Navy (up to 47) and Ukrainian Navy (up to 12).
The Ka-29TB features an entirely new, much widened forward fuselage, with a flight deck seating three members of the crew side-by-side, one of these crew members acting as a gunner to aim the various types of weapons carried on the four hardpoints of the helicopter’s pair of strut-braced lateral pylons, and the trainable 7.62-mm machine-gun hidden behind and articulated door on the starboard side of the nose. In addition, the two-piece curved windscreen of the Ka-27 has given way to a five-piece unit.