The origins of helicopter in the USSR — the successes and disasters

The development of helicopter, the base of which was laid before the stateliness Russian war, was continued in 1945. Specifically this year were built two artillery spotter on the basis of the helicopter "Omega" — G-3. On new machines were installed air engines R-985 AN-1, made by "Pratt & Whitney."

The first experimental model of G-3 was made at the factory number 45 in August 1945. The first test pilot was elected K.I.Ponamarev, which later joined military M.K.Baykalov pilot.

The test results were not satisfactory just as brilliant, and by the end of 1945 it was decided to prepare the Kiev plant number 473 to the mass production of L-3 helicopters. The first customer is the main Ordnance Department, which stated the need for the acquisition of 200 aircraft engines. According to the government plan, by February 1947 the company was in Kiev to release eight helicopters, but it was built only seven. The reason was very obvious — did not have the motor. First summer of 1947 the first five helicopters were sent to Moscow for municipal testing.

For the first time on his own intrigued by the Soviet Air Force helicopters have declared the end of winter 1946. Experts at the Air Force Institute are not left without attention, not only tests done by machinery, carried out at the airport in Izmailovo, and intensely interested in the progress of development carried out in the OKB-3. In July 1946, the factory was completely finished testing G-3, and MAP Eager transferred all data for the municipal military trials.

In contrast to the plant workers who experienced a car, the military appeared the problem with the choice of a test pilot, which would quickly learned and mastered the ability to control the helicopter. As a result of selection by a huge number of pilots chose the military pilot A.K.Dolgova, which together with the engineer L.M.Marinym and had to spend the municipal tests. The biggest challenge for pilots represented by the helicopter flight control system. In contrast to the plane in a helicopter except the usual steering, pedals and gas sectors was set separate collective pitch control lever of the main rotor and the pilot was required with extraordinary agility run from the 1st to the other arm. Required not only zaniya in a flight case, and the extraordinary agility and motor coordination. Own first training flight A.K.Dolgov made in August 1946, and later he was joined by another military pilot P.M.Stefanovsky.

During the test, failed to avoid accidents and falls. Thus, during the 1st flight of Stefanovsky not cope with the management of the helicopter and was obliged to drop it on a potato field. At one point, unable to cope with the helicopter and long, with the result that air car almost immediately after takeoff airfield fell on the ground, but, as shown by the investigation into this case, the tragedy was not povinet pilot, Break off the bottom plate and clutch.

The most terrible tragedy occurred in January 1947, when after repair Dolgov pilot and navigator V.V.Kovynev again raised the G-3 in the air. The helicopter almost fell to the ground a few kilometers from the airport. The pilot and navigator were severe injuries. In the course of the investigation into the tragedy, it was found that the premise is the destruction of the bearings and the failure of the lower shaft gear set for the right of the main rotor.

By the time the tragedy occurred, was built 10 air vehicles "Omega" G-3, has trained more than 10 people who can manage helicopters. But still, in spite of the tragedy, it was obvious that the helicopters did not only have a right to exist, and that they have a beautiful future.

In the summer of 1947 the Soviet Air Force took command of a revolutionary solution — to organize First in the country a separate helicopter unit. As a place of home base was elected Serpukhov Metropolitan area. The first arrived at the base G-3, specifically, they became the basis for the creation of this military base.

In 1947, the Kiev factory started manufacturing the new helicopter G-4, which was different from its predecessor not only advanced technical features, and was a triple. At the end of 1947 the G-4 was the first factory test that is performed by test pilot and the pilot L.N.Marin G.A.Tinyakov. Total vehicles G-4 was ranked 4 pieces without prototypes. At first, this was due to the complexity in the management and the huge number of technical shortcomings. With a sufficiently large scale G-4 did not have sufficient capacity and did not develop great speed, which obviously did not like the military.

Before designers KB Bratukhina was tasked — to make helicopter, which would not only was designed for a crew of 3 people, and had a speed of over 180 km / h and a ceiling lift up to 2,000 meters. Problem was posed not only subject to certain technical requirements, but discussed the date — no later than February 1948.

Designers coped with the task, and has first spring 1948 to the first test was ready first standard B-11 engines with M-26GRF. The helicopter is found weapons — to 20-mm gun mounted on the turret and set up to fire at the front of the motion of the helicopter, as well as two similar instruments have been installed in the feed system.

According to the order of the Anti-Monopoly Ministry June 5, 1948, test pilots for municipal testing was appointed engineer and K.I.Ponomarev D.T.Mokritsky. The tests were conducted in the normal mode. Pilot recognized the fact that a brand new car is perfect, but the problem with the vibration has not been resolved. The accident occurred on December 13 when, during another test flight at the airport Izmailovo the helicopter, located at a height comparable to a small, looked up one of the main rotor blades. As a result of the helicopter crash to the ground pilot and radio operator K.I.Ponomarev I.G.Nilus died.

Despite the tragedy, the B-11 tests were continued, and in May 1950 helicopter was transferred to the Air Force Institute.

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