The most successful aircraft

By creating a plane, designers can not predict his fate, and in fact one can last 10's years and become a legend of aviation, and the other remains in memory only scolded him was worth pilots and technicians.

DC-3, C-47, Li-2

DC-3 aircraft, made by "Douglas" and is available in different countries under different names, drove freight and passengers over half a century — 55 years! In addition, this machine so far is the prototype of security ..
In 1934, "Douglas" set for the airline, "American Airlines' own new DC-3 airliner, representing a larger version of the previous model DC-2. The aircraft seats 24 passengers, was in almost all innovative. In the new machine have been implemented throughout the streamlined fuselage, retractable landing gear, de-icing system, advanced avionics, a common and very reliable control system, as different "chips" to ensure passenger comfort. Very fast "Douglas" were the main engines of the American civilian aviation.
In 1940, the U.S. Army has purchased a DC-3 as a transport aircraft. Then he was given a new designation — C-47 "Skytrain". Transport version differed from the passenger only general cargo door at the rear of the fuselage. Thanks to the excellent quality of the C-47 has become the main "workhorse" of U.S. Air Force and be successfully applied, namely, the landing of large-scale assault on Sicily, Normandy, Belgium and the Philippines.
Almost immediately after the start of production of "Douglas" began to disperse around the world. The British bought a large shipment of the DC-3, which have received the name of "Dakota". Living in the country of the rising sun began to build under license L2D. Arrived in the United States and the delegation of the USSR. Russian side decided not to be penny wise and bought not only the license and aircraft, and machinery equipment for the production of cars. But it was not enough — it was still necessary to translate all the techno records of the inch system into the metric. This work led Lizunov engineer, after whom little later renamed the plane Li-2. But it happened later, at the beginning of the war and immediately after the start of a series of Russian "Douglas" called the SS-84. They say that even Stalin, very closely relate to the actual security if ascended into the air, it flew only to "Douglas".
Since the beginning of the war Li-2, as well as the C-47 took part in amphibious operations. American cars from their featured machine gun turret, the fact that the door opens inward, not outward. Russian engineers have adapted Li-2 bomber at puzzles, setting additional fuel tank inside the machine and hung a huge bomb caliber. In this case, such a modification was used perfectly even at the end of the war, when the modified "Douglas" in 1944 struck at Konigsberg.
After the war, the C-47, Li-2 and DC-3 remained in service for many years and longer. In particular, they were used to cool polar air: so successfully land on the ice airfields could not by any other machine. For example, in the Russian Arctic aviation Li-2 continued to operate until 1980. But that's not a record. In Latin America the past "Douglas" was written off only in 1991!

P-51 "Mustang"

In fact, at first plane P-51 of "North American" very unlucky. He was created by royal order of RAF (RAF) as an optional project. Careful, though very languid machine (four tons) was armed with a bad engine, "Allison." The plane flew very well on small heights, but it was necessary to get higher as the engine lost power, respectively, falling speed. Received from the Yankees newest car, the British initially wanted to turn away from it, because, despite the massive armament (6 wing machine guns), for the above reason it was a bad fighter. But, fortunately, the representatives of RAF fit drew attention to the good properties of aerobatic machine at low altitudes. It was decided to use R-51 as a ground attack. At the royal arms of England Air Force F-51 entered a new naming — "Mustang"
Soon enough, a large batch of "Mustang" was sent to wage war against the Germans in Africa and the Japanese in Burma, which have proved effective. The only thing that irritated — low persistence engine. As soon as one bullet to get into the engine, as he was leaving the building, attack aircraft that was obviously not the best quality.
Meanwhile, in the UK were searched intensively methods to improve combat parameters of "Mustang". One option was the installation of a plane instead of the feeble "Allison" pride of English Motors — Motor "Merlin" of "Rolls-Royce". And almost immediately the magic happens — the average car of the "ugly duckling" turned into a clear eagle! "Mustang" with the "Rolls Reuss' engine began to fly at a speed of 690 km / h and climb to an altitude of 12,800 meters. For airplanes of the time it's good features.
Once in Britain found a recipe taming of "Mustang", the Americans began to buy the British have their own engines for its own F-51. South American military initially wanted to call such aircraft "Apache", but still left the usual title. However, South American "Mustangs" differed from the English brothers new lights streamlined and more than advanced avionics.
Regardless of the configuration, the P-51 continued to be used as a ground attack aircraft. And as before, they are distinguished by low vitality. Meanwhile, in the adjoining Fighter Regiment, based in Britain, used the P-47 "Thunderbolt". "Thunderbolt" — big devyatitonnye machine (or as they called their pilots — "pots") used to accompany the "flying fortresses" raid on Germany. Applied without much of success because they were very awkward and lost in duels against lighter German "Focke-Wulf" and "Messerschmitt". The only thing that was quite good at the P-47 — it's just persistence engine. Large radial engine provides excellent protection in a frontal attack pilot and withstood several hits medium-caliber anti-aircraft shells.
It is unclear exactly which of the pilots came up with the idea, but soon to the Air Force had heard rumors about the desire regiments of "Mustang" and "Thunderbolt" exchange machines. Conducted comparative tests of P-51 and P-47, and in the end it turned clear — "Thunderbolt" was a good attack aircraft, and "Mustang" — a good fighter escort.
Since the beginning of 1944 "Mustangs" were escorting "Flying Fortress" B-17 during air raids on Germany. There, hundreds of miles from the base, they managed to shoot down enemy interceptors and successfully vorachivatsya home. Virtually year color Nazi fighter aircraft was almost completely knocked out. And the greatest reward in this belonged to the pilots of "Mustang".
After the end of the second world war military biography of "Mustang" does not end there. Most of the P-51 passed in the Australian and South African Air Force, "Mustangs" took part in the battles of the Korean War. Over Korea to resist jet fighters "Mustangs", of course, could not — lost in speed., But for fighters with piston engines found work — if for air jet fighting machine, the "Mustangs", for example, fought with another aircraft, legend — Russian "whatnot" Po-2.
Although the end of the Korean War fighting way
the P-51 was over, the sky is not broke. With luxurious handling qualities, many "Mustangs" moved into hangars private pilots. The company "North American" has released a huge batch of racing cars based on the "Mustang", also doubles business aircraft. At one of these "civilian" P-51, for example, currently flies actor Tom Cruise.


"The simpler — the better" — apparently, this principle specifically controlled aircraft Nikolai Polikarpov, creating in 1926 a new training aircraft for flight schools. The aircraft was built by the scheme biplane, which already at that time was listed as out of date. High speed of the biplane hard to wait, but she was doing the machine very manoeuvrable allowed to soar and land at very low speeds. The airframe is made of pine and plywood construction, covered with percale — cloth, which is due to the special impregnation became stronger and withstand heavy impact. Machine received the title of U-2 font in the title points to the appointment of the aircraft — "boot." On this machine produced hundreds of thousands of pilots.
Since the beginning of the war was the U-2 combat aircraft. It would seem, plywood and linen shelving unit is nothing to do at the front, where the sky fought most modern high-speed aircraft. But suddenly, the U-2 took a unique niche that has not been available for more rapid and modern machines. In addition to the usual "sky slug" functions — health, the communication, intelligence, and the adjustment — the car was used as a night bomber. They may require a unique capacity aircraft. At take-off weight of 890-1100 kg, the U-2 could raise up to 350 kg of bombs! With the coming of darkness the U-2 pilots broke through the front line and the clock "hung" over the rear positions and the coming of the enemy, terrorizing its personnel, targeting communications. Thanks to the most ordinary airfield maintenance, the U-2 was a very effective bomber. Judge for yourself: the bomber Pe-2 per day performed an average of two sorties (airfield services sought time), during which dropped on the enemy to 1500 kg bombs. A U-2 could make eight flights a day, "having transported" bomb load of 2400 kg.
During the war, the U-2 got a new title in honor of its creator designer Polikarpov — Po-2.
It is necessary to see that the flights on the Po-2 during the war were to be unsafe. Plywood construction linen burned for a few seconds, often without giving the pilot the ability to jump with a parachute. Low speed turns it into an easy target for anti-aircraft gunners. But the German pilots for each downed by-2 gives the metal cross — so it was a difficult task to bring down the Po-2 on the fighter. Low speed and outstanding maneuverability "Russian plywood" allows the pilot to turn aside from German planes: was it worth the hostile fighter to approach to a distance shot as the Po-2 abruptly left aside. There were cases where the Po-2 went from attacks on pillars and ravines. One German pilot remembers trying to bring down the "bookcase", which, using a small radius circle, circling around the bell tower, preventing "Messer" aim …
From time to time, the unique handling characteristics make it possible it is absolutely outrageous things. For example, the August 10, 1945 by the crew of a 2-part pilot lieutenant and navigator Pashenova Seroshtan did the job for the bombing of the Japanese garrison. As a result of bombing the building was set on fire tabletop. Living in the country of the rising sun began to scatter. Using this, Paschen landed near the burning headquarters, took off from an aircraft machine gun and opened fire on residents of the country of the rising sun. Destroying several enemy fighter Paschen ran into the building, took the documents found there, then took off and returned safely to its own airport!
Not once distinguished by-2 and the Korean War. It would seem that at the time of this antediluvian machines jet aircraft had nothing to show. But no! Po-2, again, as in the days of the second World War, took up the business — to terrorize the enemy fighter at night. Americans called these aircraft "kinglet, rises from the bed." "Kinglet" not only lifted from the bed, but destroyed entire columns of troops and tankers. But most impressive was the raid on the North Korean-2, produced by 17 June 1951. At night the linen shelves bombed a South American airport in Suwon, where they killed 9 of the latest jet F-86 "Sabre". And on June 21 and repeated the raid killed 10 more machines.

DH-98 "Mosquito"

When in 1939 the British company "De Hevilend" offered its own new bomber DH-98 "Mosquito", engineers and pilots were perplexed — it was a new wood! Well, later the RF virtually all aircraft, including fighters, were created out of wood and canvas, but in British aviation has long been dominated aluminum. Even more puzzling is the fact that the plane was not the 1st machine gun. At all! And this at a time when other bomber as a defensive weapon mounted entire battery of machine guns and cannons.
Constructors' De Hevilend "explained — they have created a bet only on speed. Specifically, it was to protect the "Mosquito" from the "Messerschmitt". To do this, the outer surface of the aircraft have been painstakingly cleaned and polished by irregularities, all exposed parts were hidden in the fuselage, and the connections between the parts are reduced to a minimum. The efforts paid off: "Mosquito" has a top speed at 644 km / h — more than the Luftwaffe fighter!

Despite the good data, first the king's command of the Air Force did not understand where to stick this plane tree. After all, in 1941 it was decided to release the party "Mosquito" in the intelligence version. First aircraft sortie took place September 20, 1941 — DH-98 proparhal over Brest and Bordeaux. And almost immediately became clear correct solutions to rely on speed. The plane simply walked away from the German interceptors …
A bit later for DH-98 was found the next lesson. They became languid night fighters. On aircraft radar set, four guns, four machine guns and sent to hunt for enemy "Heinkel" and "Junkers". "Mosquito" proved to be the best possible way.
Soon came the assault version of DH-98. Filled automatic guns planes circled over the sea, searching for submarines. If found, the submarines are very unlucky — even minor damage done unenforceable dive boat because of what was becoming an easy target.
But it is best to "Mosquito" felt themselves in the role for which you have been provided at the beginning — as light bombers. The relative small bomb load — 900 kg compensated amazingly accurate bombing.
For the bomber version of the DH-98 was the main occupation of the destruction of bridges and dams in France and Belgium. Pilots "Mosquito" developed a unique way of dropping bombs — with pitching. The bomb dropped from a low height, initially struggled flat on the earth's surface, then the rebound flew into the dam, and there already detonated.
At each a thousand sorties DH-98 had only lost eleven cars. It was a record number for the RAF. Usually in combat reports bore the same thing: "Mission accomplished successfully! All of the "Mosquito" back to base ". Pilots could not get enough of the ease of management and better aircraft survivability. Wood impregnated with special compound proved stronger than aluminum. It is well kept hitting bullets and shrapnel, and also did not burn, but only charred.
Planes easily moved away from the majority of the then German fighters, using speed and agility.
After the war, DH-98 continued to successfully fly. Even when the sky is reigned jet aircraft, the British used the correct plywood bomber. For example, RAF used them during the conflicts in the Middle East. The last such machines were retired only in 1961. In all there were 77781 "Mosquito". And almost everyone left the royal air force pilots have a good memoir.


A nasty incident of May 1, 1961, the year of the Urals was hit by a South American spy plane U-2, the Soviet Union forced the management to think about the reliability of the country's air defense. Nikita Khrushchev's faith in the anti-aircraft missile was seriously undermined. Although anti-aircraft missile systems S-75 and were able to get the U-2, it was of course — we need a new high-altitude interceptor. Especially since shortly Americans ugrazhali run into a series of new spy — superfast SR-71 "Black Bird". His speed would be equal to three speeds of sound, and altitude up to 20,000 feet!
USSR found than to answer — in 1965, the air has risen quite mind-boggling machine MiG-25. Twin-finned aircraft developed in three giant speed the speed of sound, flying at a distance of over 2,000 km, was rising to a height of 24,000 meters! MIG-25 was almost half is made of titanium. Other materials do not fit — because when flying at such speeds the aircraft surface glowed white hot. The cost of the new aircraft was above the clouds, but the defense sought specific tasks such machines. The best in the world (from 1965 to 1978 on the MiG-25 set 25 global records altitude and rate of climb).
MiG-25 is available in 3 variants — the intelligence, the shock and as a fighter-interceptor. A test case in the car to provide during another exacerbation of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Then Egypt was oriented wing, which had armed MiG-25. Despite the fact that Israel was ready to meet with the MiG-25, direct contact did not take place. When titanium aircraft appeared in the sky above the promised land, to intercept immediately rose some 10-s "Phantom" and "Mirage". But they did not allow the ceiling to get the Soviet machine, and she proudly paraded over the goals, photographing all the details hidden bases, ports, airfields, missile launchers and military positions. The Israelis have tried many times to break through to the base of MiGs in the killing machine on earth, but every time they met Russian rocket.
Americans closely watching an epic and probably not just pretend like to get their hands on this fantastic car. But failed. MiG-25 because of its own waybill were released very small quantities least half thousand cars and, unlike other aircraft, the Soviet Union initially did not sell them to anyone. Has promoted the case (although to this day, many experts at espionage believe that is a question of great obmyslennoy surgery).
6 September 1976 over Japan suddenly appeared Russian combat aircraft. Circled, he landed on a civilian airfield town of Hakodate, almost rammed the "Boeing 727". Arriving at the airport, Japanese and South American military was surprised to have found a new Russian MiG-25P bearing the number 31. The pilot introduced a first lieutenant Victor Belenko.
Russian side, after learning of the incident, said here that the pilot get lost and sought to return the aircraft and pilot. Americans and citizens of the country of the rising sun hastened to gut the car to screw over sixty Japanese and 20 American professionals about a week Kolupaev MiG in figuring out the tiniest aspects of the engines, equipment and reflective capabilities. But the main trophy was recognition system "friend or foe". After learning all that is needed, the residents of the country of the rising sun returned the ill-fated MiG back in the USSR.
It seemed that after the betrayal by plane Belenko could put a cross. But at the end of the MiG-25ot only won. As a result of this "hijacking" the Air Force and Air Defense Forces had to hastily change the system of identification "friend or foe" and upgrade the MiG-25. The work was completed in 1982. The upgraded aircraft has proven itself with the best hand, now the Soviet Union began to sell it over the limit. No car has not been lost as a result of the fighting, and of flight accidents with "twenty-fifth" were rare. Later, the replacement of MiG-25 came more advanced MiG-31.

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