The question of whether you can take plainclothes war in Spain (1937-1939) dress rehearsal for the 2nd World War, remains debatable, but certainly one — particularly in the battle of the Iberian Peninsula for the first time and experienced met each other on the strength of new types of equipment the Soviet Union and the Third Reich. From the experience of these battles had to quickly learn, sometimes very bitter. Last but not least is concerned aviation.

SB bomber ("High-speed bomber"), launched in batch creation in 1934, was listed deservedly proud Russian aircraft industry. Security a top speed of 350 km / h, making it virtually invulnerable to fighters ever since. But this advantage did not last long. In Spain there is a danger SB enemy — the German fighter Bf.109B — of early modification of the famous "Messershmity." With the rise in the battlefield of the fighter sat overnight date. Having missing defensive weaponry and losing the advantage of speed and altitude, Security Squadron were virtually defenseless. Damn loss increased, which in turn led to urgently begin to build a fundamentally modern machines c fundamentally latest implementation strategy.


SB bomber ("High-speed bomber")

The global trend

Generally during the interwar years, aviation power, as if by a magic wand, rushed to develop dive bombers. The fact is that the traditional "horizontal" bombing "safe" for the aircraft altitude showed low accuracy due to the imperfection of aircraft first sight and the lack of adjustable bombs. At the same time, anti-aircraft artillery to bombard prevented from low altitudes: while dumping bombs plane should strictly maintain the combat course, which means to get off the miss. So Makar, hovering in a straight line and not maneuvering bomber was just a 'school' target for the gunners. Americans found a way out, the first plane created specifically created for bomb release in a dive. As it turned out, the decision was the right one: during the attack from a dive bomber becomes a difficult target for anti-aircraft gunners, and the accuracy of the bombing at all it is growing significantly. Fights over Poland clearly showed the higher efficiency of the new German dive bomber Junkers Ju 87 Stuka, which was a pioneer in the creation of big-name ace of the First World War, Ernst Udet.


Ju 87 Stuka rightly listed as one of the most recognizable aircraft in the world. Despite the awkward appearance and average flight data, it was a very effective bomber

Birth of the "pawn"

Development of Russian dive-bombers on the basis of not having gone to a series of high-altitude fighter "100" started just at the beginning of the war, in 1938, in the famous "Tupolev sharashka" CDB-29. It was one of the prison design bureaus belonging to the Special Section of the NKVD. The whole of engineering staff consisted of the convicted "enemies of the people", and the main designer was formally someone Kutepov — NKVD colonel, past electrical fitter. In fact manage a team of engineers engaged a new aircraft, was Vladimir Petlyakov. Work went on in a very frisky pace: to rework fighter "100" in the dive bomber was given only six months. Because newcomer aircraft had to fly at low and medium altitudes, had to abandon the pressurized cabin and install turbochargers provided at the initial plane. Yet in time First flight showed very different properties. Reputation of the newest machines did not prevent even a few accidents that occurred during the test due to the failure of engines. The military were in a hurry to launch a series of plane, received the title of the Pe-2. Hurry so that the "reference" standard machine was released, "hindsight."

The rush was not in vain: the beginning of the second global war, and although the Russian Alliance has not yet made public role in it, it was clear that the time to prepare for combat operations calculated in months, and for the Russian Air Force Pe-2 was indeed a step forward. The pilots immediately pointed to the fact that in comparison with the awkward SB flying characteristics Pe-2 were even higher in a new bomber was found "golden mean" between stability and maneuverability. The principal advantage was the fact that the plane finally got comfortable and reliable communication between the pilot, navigator and gunner. Pe-2 was self-sealing fuel tanks (which significantly improved its life), and in the management bodies have been extensively used in electric motors, will greatly facilitate the piloting of the aircraft. Yet the Pe-2 was a major in management, especially at low speeds, and sought to pilot attention and care (because first Russian majestically when the level of training of flight personnel was just awful, with the landing broke a lot of young crews). Bomb load of 600 kg, and when overloaded — ton (many considered it insufficient for such class of aircraft). Small weight of bombs was justified, first by leaving the dive Structures Pe-2 had to withstand heavy loads — the design had to lay in store a great strength. For this and donated part of the bomb load. To decrease the speed in a dive under the wings of the Pe-2 was installed air brake — folding lattice of iron pipes. Due to their differences perpendicular to clot effectively achieved by air quenching speed. Electric air brake controlled "automatic dive" AP-1. Defensive weapons "pawns" initially consisted of four 7.62-mm machine guns ShKAS aircraft, two of which were set motionless in the nose of the aircraft. Other guns were mounted in the movable pivot installations at places of navigator and arrow and had a limited field of fire.



By June 1941 were issued 904 Pe-2, most of which, unfortunately, was soon irretrievably lost either on the ground or in poorly cooked sorties. The situation has deteriorated to the same fact that the pilots did not have time to fully master the zealous car and then not actually been trained dive-bombing. Prirekaniya cause rather weak and defensive weapons: machine guns caliber rifle was apparently not enough against the new fighter Messerschmitt Bf109G, capable bombers storm the impunity with non-threatening distance. Exceptionally in 1942, "pawn" finally got to the massive arms and machine guns mnogokalibernye reliable system Berezina. Then have been eliminated many of the design defects discovered during the operation. The car received a new boosted engines, with all this also has been improved aerodynamics. With these modifications, &qu
ot;the fighter past" Pe-2 quickly gave up a point to know — now, "Messer" ("thin" as they called it, our pilots), inadvertently left alone with "Petlyakova," had all the chances to be in the role of victim — some crews Pe-2 had to account for as many as five aircraft shot down! At the front was not uncommon when the "pawns" in flight case showed a group of enemy bombers, took on the role of fighter …


Messerschmitt Bf109G

The Chronicles of dive bombers: who is better?

Many historians are taken to associate the Pe-2 and the "Lapotnikov» Junkers Ju 87. Conclusions are made with all this variety. But, despite the identical tasks to associate these aircraft are not quite right yet. It should be recognized that the accuracy rate in Ju 87 was slightly higher than the "pawn", as the "Junkers" created dropped bombs from a height of 600-700 m, in contrast to the Pe-2, bombed with at least a kilometer. In such criteria pilot "Junkers" had the opportunity to take aim virtually "point-blank", taking the amendment, based on weather reports, "the eye." Besides "Lapotnikov" dived at a relatively low speed (600 km / h), and the pilot was quite time for correcting the trajectory of the flight.

But the slow speed "Lapotnikov" was and shortcoming. Junkers Ju 87 was not in vain is considered one of the signs of "Blitzkrieg" — it was intended to act in the criteria under-active enemy air defenses. In the unlikely event kopotlivogo pros and poorly protected "Junkers" is rapidly reduced to a minimum. When they began to grow the number of Russian fighters and their level of training of pilots, loss Ju 87 fucking increased, which forced the Germans to bombard only with great heights and accompany the "Junkers" good fighter cover, and the lack of on-board automation, able to enter all of the amendments that are required under attack from a large height, badly affected the accuracy. Error in the direction of the plane of only one degree slip afforded 50 m

Russian designers have solved the problem of adding more to help the pilot of the 1st crew members. So Makar, prompting the Pe-2 on the target was a "double". The navigator measured the wind speed and direction (to find "drift" bomb and the aircraft itself), expected to "combat the rotation angle", and presented the sight, while the pilot kept the target in the crosshairs as accurately as possible, and tried to sustain the line of motion dive. Specifically, at the expense of that of the "division of labor" accuracy rate was 40-50 m (this was quite enough), and an experienced crew of "pawn" could put a bomb in the ten-meter circle. In addition, more high-speed and better armed Pe-2 is less than the Ju 87, needed a fighter cover and less tormented by anti-aircraft fire. By the way, in 1944, the Germans attempted to use as a dive-bomber fighter Focke-Wulf Fw190F, which is significantly superior to flight and features of the Pe-2 and Ju 87. The main advantage is that, freed from the bomb load, this could just dive bomber to fight back though how the fighters. But experience has shown that the accuracy rate Fw190F was much lower than the "old man» Ju 87. This was associated with a first rate dive grown: heavy and powerful "Focke-Wulf" during the dive quickly dispersed, and even a cool pilot just did not have time to immediately control the plane and aim. Time has shown that only the development of electronics has made dive bombing pretty comfortable to pilot single machine.


Focke-Wulf Fw190
Designed by Kurt Tank, hitherto received from the military and historians of diverse assessment. At the time of the creation of this aircraft were used the most leading technologies. "Focke-Wulf" was very effective against the bombers, but the impact of this variant of the machine in the Luftwaffe did not catch on. Depicted modification Fw190D — «long-nosed Dora" (with air-cooled radial engine) — was set up to deal with the "flying fortresses"

Only by the end of 1944, there was a question about the substitution Pe-2 is more perfect dive bomber Tu-2, but petlyakovskaya car remained mostly Russian frontline bombers to the end of the war. Most of the fast tame "pawn" of pilots not chayali soul in his own plane, considering it a perfect machine in its class.

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