Yes, the MD-160 Lun class ekranoplan the only one of its type built. It's NATO code name was Duck It is classed as a ship, not an aircraft or hovercraft. A new ekranoplan class is currently under development.
The Russians got into aquaplaning in the 50/60s as they tried to build craft like that could hug the natural down force of flying a few feet above sea level (like birds do) to go across the Black Sea, Caspian Sea and eventually the Atlantic at 1000s of MPH. In order to deliver a Nuke that would literally go under the radar.
I think it is called "ground effect". Lots of lift provided the wings stayed only a few feet above the surface. The idea was to shift large numbers of fighting fit troops across the Caspian or Black Sea quickly.
Yep, these took advantage of ground effect, essentially a cushion of air that gets slightly pressurized between the craft and the ground.
It's the same phenomena that you'll notice sometimes when landing in a large commercial jet liner. They'll come in for landing, and flare right before touchdown. If they slightly over-flare....that plus ground effect will essentially cause the plane to "float" a few feet above the runway for a few extra seconds as the aircraft sheds speed, then it'll settle down.
These craft count on that effect to stay slightly aloft. They can't fly higher (the wings don't create enough lift for flight without ground effect added in), so they stay a few feet off the water. Highly efficient travel @ fairly high speed.
The mere mention of ground effects reminded me of flying about 5-10 feet above the Elkhorn River in Nebraska. The giant cottonwood trees form a canopy tunnel that may last for a mile or more before you can climb out of it.
It was a J3 Cub and you know how slow those will go without stalling. Then factor in ground effects. Foolhardy and dangerous but something amazing to experience...
Ground effect is a remarkable phenomenon to watch.
Sometimes the free flight model airplanes would drift out of a thermal then get in an adjacent downer and just sink like a rock. You need the model to stay aloft another 20 seconds or so to get the "Max" and it looks like you're a goner, but if the model still glides fairly well and isn't too prone to stalling, it can bump along just a few feet above the ground and you can eke out your max
The timer (the observer who records your effort for that round) can see the airplane. Sometimes the model is down in a swale, an area surrounded by tall grass, and even with good glasses the timer can't see your plane and he has to click the timer off once the model is no longer visible to him. I'd be out there under the model on a small dirt bike, with my shirt off swinging the shirt around under the model to try and keep it aloft, and sometimes you could kind of cajole the timer into imagining he could still see the model (whether he could or not) on the assumption no one would be under a model (riding a noisy trail bike) trying to keep it aloft - if it was already down.