Hyperboloid engineer Shchukin




Russian UFO would cost no more than six hundredth "Mercedes"

Photo by Mikhail Kovalev

Those who were lucky enough to see the flight of Russian "plates" in one voice say: fantastic. In fact, the aircraft in the form of a convex lens resembles repeatedly described ufologists alien ships. It can take off and land in an open field — a dirt area, lawn, water, swamp, and for these the most difficult phases of the flight he does not need the chassis: it is a hovercraft.
Take-off and landing, "the man-made UFO" dazzling. Starting, the machine is lifted off the ground, gently floats above it cool and takes to the skies. The same landing. Sharp separation decline, hovering above the surface, stop.

For any type of modern aircraft glide slope as steep decline, the so-called bird landing, is not available. At the same time, no controlled gravity, nor any other forms of energy, as yet unexplored by mankind to Russian UFO have no relationship.
Yet this dish! Not UFO, prishelcheskaya and very earthly, of the twentieth century, working at all familiar turbojet engines. "EKIP" — a revolutionary new aircraft type — have started in Moscow 25 years ago. In the mid-90s it driven model for the first time rose into the sky, thus demonstrating that the stories about the UFO people are not deprived of common sense.

Dream engineer Shchukin

The idea of "Equipo" (ecology and progress — as the abbreviation stands for) in the calculations and formulas has been issued on paper in 1980, when a professor at the Moscow Power Engineering Institute, Lev Shchukin, a former employee of the OKB-1 of Sergei Korolev, first attempted to put into practice the principle of " flying wing. " Innovative proposal seemed prohibitive and at the same time exciting.
As you know, the foundation of any aircraft — a glider that is firm since the Wright brothers' airplane. During the last hundred years, the foundation in the form of the cross did not change significantly. Airplane wings are, people are sitting in the fuselage, engines are suspended under the wings. Another thing is the structure in which the function of a thick truncated wing — fuselage are combined in an aerodynamically carrying body of the aircraft. Such symbiosis is possible — do not laugh, please! — Only in the form of an inverted dish. Without going into technical details, we say, is this form creates a huge lift, without going to any comparison with known types of aircraft. How and by what means — the story ahead.
Over fifteen years spent Lev Shchukin and his fellow enthusiasts, to prove that Russian dish, collected from traditional aviation elements can fly. Moreover, unlike the aircraft, it is virtually trouble-free. Even with the failure of both engines, it will plan to land softly on the water surface, but do not fall!
In 1982, in a gated suburban Krasnoarmeisk Institute "Geodesy" the authors conducted the first design bench test a small-scale model of "L'Equipe". Then began blowing in the wind tunnels. In the pilot plant "Energia" at the Queen (then — Kaliningrad) were made devyatitonnye airframe — two pieces. There, in the "Energy" in the firing stands were tested propulsion. On hydraulic canals TSAGI in Zhukovsky was demonstrated jogging model hovercraft. The test results showed — a solution is found, the search is conducted in the right direction.
Funded development activities in those years, as you might guess, the Ministry of Defence.

Port of six seas

In theory — and as the work progresses, and almost the same — the designers of the Shchukin team became clearer and clearer that for the "Equipe" the future. Implemented the principle of flying wing allows you to run the whole gamut of "plates" for various purposes.
Judge for yourself. Full weight of the machine varies from 9 to 600 tons. It is capable of taking on large loads up to 1,200 passengers. Flight height — from 200 to 12,000 meters. Range — what else, even traveling around the world. Speed — up to 700 km per hour. In all of this "fluff" includes braking mode on landing at a speed of 100 kilometers per hour (airplane slowed at 250). Flies "EKIP" at 140 km per hour, but maybe less. Many kilometers of concrete paths, airports are not necessary, the maximum run-up of about 500 meters.
And another important advantage. Internal volume "EKIP" 3-4 times more than the same weight of the aircraft. He is ready to take on itself a serious supply goryuchku. But kerosene and gas, including liquefied hydrogen. With regard to aircraft engines translate to gas — an unsolvable problem, because the aircraft to place the gas tank anywhere. On the converted "whole", for example, they either take up two-thirds of the cabin, or they have to mold to the fuselage of the second floor, which distorts the aerodynamics of the ship. The game is clearly not worth the candle. In the "plate" capacity organically arranged on the sides of the fuselage. The use of gas reduces the cost of running it in half.
From the combination of these characteristics was asking only one conclusion: a resident of Queen Lev Shchukin made a discovery that provides a breakthrough in the development of domestic aviation for at least several decades to come.
Unexpected, full of juicy futures paints a picture drawn, in particular, a Moscow architect Vyacheslav Osipov, when he learned of the existence of "L'Equipe". He suggested the use of range "plates" as a global transportation and technological systems, transforming life of big cities. Small "Equipo" can fulfill the role of individual vehicles. They fly fast, do not stand in traffic jams. A ready to go up into the air with a car at 80 km per hour. However, the land on the crowded streets of the city personal "Equipo" we should not. Personal air transport is best alight on water on the Moscow River, the benefit is not loaded. So being built business center Moscow-City on Krasnopresnenskoj waterfront has the potential to become more and river port for the rich "Cymbalist." Especially as the personal cost "EKIP" will be no more than six hundredth "Mercedes" — for wealthy people is utter nonsense.
"Plates" on 20-25 passengers are ideal for functions taxis that connect the city center with the airport near Moscow, as well as excursions and tourist transport. Specially equipped "Equipo" can become a mobile hospital, fire trucks and delivery system Emergency crews in space disasters.
And, of course, the most important thing — the mass of the "saucer"-Airbus, rises into the sky from 150 to 1,200 passengers. Convenient on domestic and international routes.

Where is the money?!

And yet, what did such a brilliant chief designer of "L'Equipe" Lev Shchukin, making the most fantastic dreams of becoming a very, very material? After all, the possibility of flying wing intrigued Soviet specialists in the field of aerodynamics in the early 40's. Attempts were made to construct and lift into the air, but nothing worked.
— Difficulties of the problem rested on the aerodynamics of the aircraft — explains Simon Zelvinsky, a friend and colleague, Shchukin, his successor as chief designer "EKIP". — In theory, the thick wing in the form of a convex lens — an ideal tool for creating high lift, as the footprint of the air, he has a lot more. The trick lies in the effects of air flow to the body. Over the convex top, they are carried at high speeds, a flat base — much slower. On the one hand it is good, on the other — it is bad, because the image on the top rear of the hull air turbulence showered device, making it unmanageable. But if you remove the twist — the way is clear.
The unit boundary layer control (that is neutralizing the vortices) Shchukin developed over 10 years. And found the same way! He came up with a solution which flows arising on the stern, roughly speaking, are absorbed into the fuselage.
Tests of radio-controlled model "EKIP", equipped with Shchukin "neutralizer" showed its good handling qualities. In 1994, the unit weight of 120 kg, the size of a diameter of about five feet up from the territory of the Saratov Aviation Plant, where the manufacturing base, "L'Equipe". His mission on earth was accompanied by applause. It seemed a little more — and a group of authors can begin to create longer models, and real machines. But …
— As always, the stumbling block was government funding — says Semyon Zelvinsky. — For example, in June 1993 by the decision of the Government of the Russian Federation we have allocated 1.2 billion rubles. When they came to us for the next year, the money was devalued by 8 times. They had the only part of the program.
Lev Shchukin and his friends knocked at doors of instances, appealed to private investors. For a time he helped the State Service of fire protection, interested in the opportunity, "L'Equipe". However, the financial makeup did not remove all the severity of the problem.
In 1997, in Saratov, Russian "plate" showed President Yeltsin. You Boris Yeltsin, a man gambling and carried away, his eyes lit up. "That's what we need!" — He said, and he called the Minister of Industry Ilya Klebanov.
— After that — says Zelvinsky — Minister came to Tolstoy Shchukin, and embraced him, "Congratulations, Boris Yeltsin ordered to include the costs of developing," L'Equipe "separate line to the Russian budget."
Indeed, an article about the allocation of 10 million rubles for the creation of a "saucer" appeared in the main financial document of the country. However, in contrast to the UFO, paper, millions have not materialized into live real money. Scientists have sought them in vain in high government offices. "Refer to Borodin" — finally told them to. "Where public money?" — They asked him to discouraging candor. "Do not know" — cut-powerful Pavel Borodin. Roughly the same pattern developed and cooperation with officials of the Moscow mayor's office.
— Yuri Luzhkov — says Zelvinsky — liked the idea of using "EKIP" as urban transport, he promised to support our quest. Invited the next day to the town hall to the treaty-making.
However, the paper formally transferred to Luzhkov's name through the department concerned, vanished without a trace in the bowels of the bureaucratic machinery.
In 2001 … Lev Shchukin died, and not waiting for his moment of glory. His death was ridiculous. Septuagenarian professor was driving his car home in Queens through the holiday village Zagoryanskiy. Behind the wheel he fell ill, he pulled up on the roadside and asked the cops standing in the bushes to assist him. The police were sympathetic friends. They called for "03." But not in Queens, to which was no more than three kilometers and Schyolkovo. The coach of "first aid" makes it to two hours. Lev Shchukin during that time died of a heart attack.

America will catch up to us?

Last fall, the media have been reporting that the Americans signed a contract with the Saratov Aviation Plant on joint production of "L'Equipe". Was announced date: In 2007, in the State of Maryland held flight test Russian-American system, created on the basis of the "Equipe". In mass production it intends to launch another 5 years.
The increased interest in Russian "plate" abroad began to experience since its inception. NASA experts have recognized it as an unconditional promise. Americans in the past have attempted to lure avialet. Under the platform for the employees of the Saratov plant was allocated a settlement and a plant in Tennessee. But the condition was the transfer of United States copyright. German firms were asked to perform "only" research and design of the work. Assembly machines Germany left behind. The Chinese offered to split the profits from the production of "L'Equipe" into three equal parts: Russia, China Aerospace Agency and the commercial entity to invest in production.
— As soon as there was talk of a possible collaboration and production, I immediately said that to take away "EKIP" of the country, we will not. And the rights to it remain for Russia — the director of the Saratov Aviation Plant Alexander Ermichine.
Acceptable conditions offered only in the last year: Russia intends to cooperate with the experts of Naval Aviation USA. "Plate" they need as an unmanned aerial vehicle for fire fighting and combat natural disasters.
— Work is not standing still, — says Alexander Ermichine — but it's not a quick thing. Serious protocols signed with the influential U.S. institutions. I hope that the agreement will be implemented. By the way, in America on the eve of the presidential election published an article about our project, and then just before the elections, so do not write. The article says that we have to work with the Russian that Russian intellectuals can give odds to any country. However, in Russia for the introduction of high-tech means no.
It sounds like a non-appealable judgment.

Almost as Bulgakov

     — We are out of luck — repeats Zelvinsky. — A revolutionary breakthrough in aviation coincided with a period of revolutionary change in Russia, which overshadowed everything else. Coups in science and technology were not necessary to it.
Meanwhile, recently learned that overseas designers are not sitting idly by. The United States has got its own version of the "flying wing". The assurances of the experts, it actually plays the "EKIP" that, in general, is not surprising. Interesting ideas tend to captivate minds. In the early 90's Russian "plate" ahead of the development of the global aviation twenty years. Ahead to today? It's hard to say. After all, the development has not progressed beyond a radio-controlled model, which since the mid-90s flew no more than once. Daring experiment braked stop-cock called "industrial development." And plans were serious. Assembly of the first drone, then — manned the machine. Were made pre-design to create a passenger "plates" on the 40, 150 and 1,000 seats.
Emergency brake slows as much as 10 years …

Moskovsky Komsomolets
from 29.12.2004

Olga Vlasova, Julia Goncharova.

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