Military Review

Lockheed U-2 vs C-75 "Dvina"

More than half a century ago, the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States (CIA) began sending high-altitude U-2 strategic reconnaissance aircraft into the USSR airspace, which were equipped with photographic equipment specially designed for their needs. These flights continued almost 4 of the year and, in the end, became the cause of a serious international crisis, which, in fact, led to their termination. In many ways, it was precisely flights over the territory of the USSR that gave American spy planes a big impetus to the development of domestic air defense systems, which to this day remain the best in the world. Then at the turn of the 50-60 of the last century, the main enemy for high-altitude American reconnaissance aircraft was the Dvina C-75 air defense system, which closed the Soviet sky for them.

U-2 история of flights

For the first time, American aircraft began photographic and electronic monitoring of Soviet territory at the end of 1946. The beginning of these flights in time coincided with the beginning of the Cold War, and naturally it was not accidental. Initially, such aircraft took off only from Alaska and flew along the Soviet land and sea frontiers. At the same time, as the confrontation between the two countries intensified, the US Department of Defense increasingly insisted on the need for deep air reconnaissance of the territory of the USSR and its allies. Over time, these flights really began, but they led to large losses. A very large number of reconnaissance aircraft were shot down in Soviet airspace, a smaller part over the territory of the PRC and other states of the Soviet bloc. The total number of teams lost aircraft was 252 man, while the fate of the 138 pilots remained unknown.

Taking this into account, the CIA decided to sign an agreement with Lockheed on the construction of a stratospheric reconnaissance aircraft. So 22 March 1955, the company has been a formal contract. According to this document, Lockheed was supposed to build 20 aircraft with a total value of 22 million dollars. This amount did not include the costs of creating jet engines that were supposed to be purchased by the Air Force, as well as photographic equipment that the CIA planned to order separately. The contract terms were quite tight, the first Lockheed aircraft was supposed to deliver in 4 a month, not later than the end of July.
Lockheed U-2 vs C-75 "Dvina"

The implementation of this order has become a real technical epic, many of the details of which remain classified. For example, the fuel of those years for jet aircraft at an altitude of 20 meters began to boil and evaporate. Therefore, Shell has urgently created aviation kerosene with stabilizing additives. Modifying the Pratt & Whitney J57 engines was also not easy, and there were plenty of other problems. However, the first aircraft was built by July 15th. It, like all subsequent aircraft, was built in the Californian city of Burbank.

Flight tests were at an extremely fast pace and in deep secret. The plane took off and landed on the bottom of a dried-up lake in the state of Nevada, located north of Las Vegas. A nuclear test site was located near this place, so the whole area around it was closed. 29 July 1955, the reconnaissance plane, which was run by test pilot Tony Levyer, first rolled along the airfield. In September of the same year, he managed to climb to a height of 19 500 meters. And at the end of 1956, he managed to climb more than 22 kilometers. 1 of the same year, U-2, in a disassembled form, was forwarded to the English Lakekenheath Air Base, where the aircraft was reassembled and prepared for flight operations.

Great Britain is a rather densely populated country, so it was obvious that an unusual plane would quickly be noticed. For this reason, even before the start of the first U-2 flights over the Warsaw bloc countries, the American intelligence services conducted a large-scale camouflage operation. 7 May, NASA Director Hugh Dryden made a statement that Lockheed began producing a superhigh-level aircraft that will be used to study the ozone layer, cosmic rays and stratospheric air flow. Later, the general public was informed that the new aircraft were incorporated into the UK-based 1 Meteorological Squadron. It was also reported that such aircraft will fly to "other areas of the globe." Of course, not a word was said about the USSR.

In 1956, the Soviet units of the Air Force and Air Defense did not yet have fighters capable of climbing 20 000 meters, on which U-2 flew, or air defense systems that could get them there. The first missions confirmed the invulnerability of the aircraft. The ability of an aircraft to fly in the Moscow sky without interference was even proven. In 1956, American spy planes performed a series of flights over the USSR. In particular, the 2 flight took place on July 9, another one took place on July 10. On the same day, the USSR officially sent the United States a note of protest, and President Eisenhower ordered that all U-2 raids be suspended over Soviet territory for the time being. They were resumed only in June 1957, and this time the flights were conducted not in the western part of the USSR, but in the Far East.

In total, the U-2 reconnaissance aircraft penetrated 24 Soviet airspace times. The last such raid, called Mission 4154, took place on 1 May 1960. This flight was sanctioned personally by President Eisenhower, who at the same time issued an order after May 1 not to fly over the territory of the USSR. As a result, the U-2 aircraft, invulnerable to this, was shot down by a Soviet anti-aircraft missile in the Sverdlovsk region, and its pilot, Powers, safely descended by parachute and was captured, which Khrushchev officially announced on May 7.

As a result, Soviet-American relations once again underwent a crisis, which caused the cancellation of the international meeting with the participation of the leaders of the USSR, the USA, Great Britain and France, which was to be held in Paris on May 16. The pilot of the downed U-2 remained in prison in the USSR until February 19 1962, when he was exchanged for the Soviet intelligence officer William Fischer, who was known as Rudolf Abel.

In total, over the territory of the USSR, 4 reconnaissance aircraft U-2 photographed 3 million 370 thousand square meters. meters of Soviet territory or about 15% of the total area of ​​the country. Total 392 was shot thousands of meters of film, which is still stored in the archives of the CIA. The value of this aircraft is confirmed at least by the fact that in 1962, it was they who confirmed the preparation of launch positions for Soviet ballistic missiles in Cuba. At present, modern modifications of the U-2S and TU-2S aircraft are still in service with the US Air Force. It is assumed that they will be decommissioned only by 2023 year. The design of the new generation radar Astor,
which is used on these reconnaissance aircraft.

ZRK C-75 "Dvina"

The Dvina S-75 (according to NATO codification - SA-2 Guideline) is a Soviet mobile anti-aircraft missile system. The main developer of the air defense missile system was NPO Almaz (general designer A. A. Raspletin), and the developer of the rocket was the ICB Fakel (general designer P. D. Grushin). The complex was put into service in 1957 year. The C-75 SAM system could destroy targets at a distance of up to 43 km, in the altitude range from 0,5 to 30 km, which had speeds up to 2 300 km / h. Since its adoption, this complex has been constantly improved. Its latest modifications are capable of destroying targets flying at speeds up to 3 700 km / h.

The S-75 air defense missile system occupies a special place among the domestic air defense systems, this particular complex was the first to be transported. He was the first in the world to take part in real hostilities and opened the scoring of enemy aircraft downed. It was from the C-75 complex that supplies of domestic air defense systems began abroad. ZRK-75 has become the most used complex for the history of air defense forces around the world. This complex in various versions was in service with more than 40 countries. For all the time of its release, about 800 divisions of this complex were exported. C-75 was also produced in the People's Republic of China under a license, where it was called Huntsi-1 (HQ-1) and Huntsi-2 (HQ-2).

In many ways, the initial success of the complex is connected with its main weapons - anti-aircraft missile, which was designed in the Grushin Design Bureau. The choice of the main technical solutions for SAM, which received the designation 1D, was largely determined by the appearance of the radio-electronic part of the С-75 SAM system. For example, the use of a narrowly directed antenna for transmitting commands to a rocket rigidly connected with the unit of the target-oriented airborne main antennas of the guidance station predetermined the use of an inclined launch of the rocket with deployable toward the PU target.

To implement such a launch, the rocket had to have a very good initial thrust-to-weight ratio, which only a solid propellant rocket engine (RDTT) could provide. On the contrary, with a relatively long subsequent flight to the target, the requirements for thrust values ​​were an order of magnitude less. In addition, it required high efficiency engine. In those years, only the liquid-propellant rocket engine (LRE) responded to these conditions. So it was decided to use a two-stage scheme of the rocket, which was equipped with a solid-propellant solid propellant rocket motor working at the launch, and a rocket engine, which worked on the march. This scheme allowed the rocket to provide a high average speed, and therefore the possibility of timely hitting an air target.

In order to determine the aerodynamic design of the rocket, the designers created original calculation methods. They took into account the requirements of the effective operation of the stabilization system, the required maneuverability of the rocket (the use of a radio command guidance system on the target was allowed) and the control loop, as well as obtaining minimal aerodynamic drag. As a result, for the first time in the USSR, a normal aerodynamic configuration was used for SAM. At the same time, destabilizers were installed in the front of the anti-aircraft missile, which increased its maneuverability and also made it possible to regulate the stock of its static stability during the refinement process.

The use of the normal scheme allowed in practice to realize higher aerodynamic characteristics in comparison with the “weft” scheme. For such a scheme, it was not even necessary to use the ailerons - the ZUR control on roll was carried out using differential steering deflection. In turn, the sufficient static stability and high thrust-to-weight ratio of the anti-aircraft missile at the launch site ensured a delay in yaw and pitch control up to the separation of the accelerator. At the same time, in order to prevent the unacceptable leaving of the axles of the on-board instruments at the launch site, the rocket was stabilized in roll. For this, a pair of consoles of stabilizers located in one of the planes had ailerons.

The air defense system consisted of radar guidance, a two-stage anti-aircraft missile, as well as 6 launchers, power tools and transport-loading machines. It was from the C-75 air defense missile system that the U-2 reconnaissance aircraft was shot down. 1 May 1960, the Americans decided to fly over Red Square during the May Day parade. The plane under the control of Powers was coming from the direction of Central Asia. At the same time, the aircraft was closely watched by the radar system of the Soviet air defenses, the route of its flight was reported personally to S. S. Khrushchev directly to the mausoleum rostrum. Under Sverdlovsk, the plane entered the zone of action of the air defense system and was shot down. A couple of MiG-17 fighters were raised to intercept it. By an unfortunate coincidence, one of these aircraft was also shot down by a C-75 missile, while the pilot was killed.

The C-75 complex played a very important role in the formation and development of all the guided missile defense systems of the USSR. It became the only air defense system in the world that successfully performed the function of providing air defense during large-scale hostilities (Vietnam, Egypt). Currently, like the U-2, it continues to remain in service with a number of states.

Information sources:
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[media = No% 20 "% Secret"% 20.% 20 Winner% 20 Fantasy]

The film tells about the developments of Russian scientists, aimed at confronting American fighter spies. One of the outstanding designers who created the world's best air defense system used later in many hot spots in the world was Peter Grushin, whose name was kept secret for many years. It was his rocket in May 1960 of the year near Sverdlovsk that Lockheed "Y-2" superhigh reconnaissance aircraft, which was considered inaccessible, was shot down. Another U-2 aircraft was shot down by Grushin’s rocket over Cuba, at the height of the Caribbean crisis. For the first time in the world, a ballistic missile was shot down by Grushin’s missile. In the US, this was repeated only through 23 of the year. There are still no analogs to Grushin’s designs.


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  1. snek
    snek 6 October 2012 09: 58
    On July 29, 1955, a reconnaissance aircraft operated by test pilot Tony Levière first rolled across the airfield. In September of that year, he managed to climb to a height of 19 meters. And at the end of 500 he managed to climb more than 1956 kilometers.

    First, "Tony" is a nickname, and the real name is Anthony W. "Tony" LeVier
    Secondly, this is a man

    Thirdly, the date of the first flight (August 1, 1955) is also known.
  2. gregor6549
    gregor6549 6 October 2012 10: 41
    The U2 aircraft was an outstanding development in the field of aviation technology, which is confirmed by the effectiveness of its reconnaissance missions in the 50 60 years of the last century and its relevance to the 20s of the 21 century. Few aircraft can boast of this. And the fact that a couple of aircraft of this type were put to the ground is such a thing: there is no method against scrap if there is no other scrap. There was such scrap against U2. But while it was found, the U2 did a lot of things. Yes, and now apparently in time. In vain would the Americans not keep him in the service. It’s too expensive to hold such birds for no reason.
    1. galeo88
      galeo88 7 October 2012 08: 33
      Not one NATO pilot, not for what money today, the S-300 will not fly, not to mention the S-400. The U-2 was an excellent aircraft, for its time, like the MiG-25.
  3. itr
    itr 6 October 2012 10: 47
    When in a ride to Yekaterinburg, a rocket stands as a reminder
  4. postman
    postman 6 October 2012 12: 26
    U-2 is a unique aircraft, albeit with its own cockroaches: it cannot land on its own (visual). The problem is solved as follows - when approaching the landing strip, the plane is caught up by 2 special cars, currently it is the fourth generation "Pontiac GTO", and the second pilot (in one of the cars), on the walkie-talkie give instructions to the pilot for action, after a full stop, the plane falls onto the wing (left), then by car chassis racks falling off during take-off, which are located at the ends of the wings, are delivered.

    How did he manage to get on an aircraft carrier-HZ

    beautiful and functional, designed for flight ...
    1. Chicot 1
      Chicot 1 6 October 2012 14: 08
      In addition to the "Pontiac GTO", the U-2 is also accompanied by cars of other brands. So there they also "drive" the "Pontiac G8 GT", and also the "Chevrolet Camaro Super Sports" ... The main thing for these cars is that they can pick up a speed equal to the landing speed of U-400 at a distance of less than 2 meters .. ...
    2. Follow us
      Follow us 6 October 2012 20: 11
      Each landing is almost a plane crash. Really unique device.
      1. postman
        postman 7 October 2012 23: 12
        Quote: Siga
        Every landing is almost a plane crash

        "managed !!!!
        But how it flies
  5. Chicot 1
    Chicot 1 6 October 2012 13: 59
    U-2s are still flying, and so far no one is going to write them off. Currently, it has cameras from the decommissioned SR-71A Blackbird, which have better resolution for shooting than digital ones ... Its usual, so to speak, "working height" is 21 cameras ...
    In a word, antiquity still lives. And even fighting, taking part in local conflicts and in the preparation and conduct of various kinds of special operations ...
    So we must admit that the engineers and designers of Lockheed have created a truly unique and successful car ...
    1. Ortrega
      Ortrega 6 October 2012 15: 00
      Quote: Chicot 1
      In a word, antiquity still lives. And even fighting, taking part in local conflicts and in the preparation and conduct of various kinds of special operations ...

      So the old S-75 is scrapped by some countries, they also don’t write off, they live and protect the sky from such black-assed paparazzi yes
      And they don’t want to write off because it’s because the money has not yet worked out, what money they spent on it lol
    2. smprofi
      smprofi 6 October 2012 17: 24
      yes they fly. here are lit up:

      Lt. Col. Alberto Cruz, 380th Expeditionary Operations Group deputy commander, congratulations Maj. Mark after he reached 2,000 flight hours in the U-2 Feb. 10, 2012. Mark, a Mobile, Ala., Native, is deployed from Beale Air Force Base, Calif., To the 99th Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron.

      The 99th Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron is part of the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing (380 AEW), based on Al Dhafra Air Base in the UAE.

      well, more about U-2 Dragon Lady you can look here:
  6. Ortrega
    Ortrega 6 October 2012 15: 05
    Article HUGE PLUS!
    People like Grushin saved us, and many countries from capture.
    Arabs simply owe him a monument of gold, now they know who
    I came up with a roof for their roof.
  7. Kir
    Kir 6 October 2012 19: 15
    Thanks to the author for the article, otherwise there has been nothing positive lately! And also messages like "the plane disappeared towards the sea" would not interfere with the appendage, otherwise some have become painfully insolent lately !! And there would be more people like Grushin and others like him !!
  8. Dimon Lviv
    Dimon Lviv 6 October 2012 21: 40
    Aircraft - like a legless albatross, flies just as well and sits badly.
    Each landing is essentially emergency, these pilots need to be given medals for every successful landing ... And, I am sure that not all of them survive to retirement from stress.
    1. postman
      postman 8 October 2012 00: 46
      Quote: Dimon Lviv
      these pilots must be given medals for every successful landing ..

      FIGs just get there.
      They are taught and selected for a long time:
      -have had a raid, at least nominal 1200 hours (RMQ-1/9 Reaper does not include preparation time and "civil" flight hours) or 800 nominal flight hours on T-1 (T-6, T-34, T-37, T- 38, T-45, etc.) or 500 hours on a fighter
      And 500 hours of flying time in the wing (not remotely controlled aircraft) And 12 months or 400 hours as a pilot in the mission command aircraft.
      -to climb into the cockpit ("anthropometric data" - standard form 88, standard form 600: standing height, sitting height, distance from buttocks to knee)
      U-2 training lasts about 9 months, and includes a test on the T-38 Talon.
      -Two months of operational tasks and two months of continuing education.