Military Review

French aviation elegance. Part 1


Aviation French industry was formed at the beginning of the 20th century on the basis of a large number of semi-artisan enterprises. In 1914, France, which became the world aviation leader, had 20 aircraft manufacturing and 13 engine-building plants, the productivity of which reached 541 aircraft and 1065 engines per month. During the First World War, 67892 aircraft and 85316 aircraft engines were released (only in 1918 23669 and 44569, respectively), at that time there was an enlargement of aircraft and engine manufacturers (10 aircraft and 6 engine manufacturers), and the scientific and experimental base expanded.

At 1921 — 1922, the French aviation industry entered the 1-th place in the world (up to 3,5 was produced thousands of aircraft per year). But since 1930, the French aircraft industry has gradually lost its leadership in competition with the UK, Germany and the USA. In the 1932, 400 airplanes were produced, in 1935, 500 airplanes were produced. During the subsequent nationalization and concentration of the aviation industry in 1936, six out of ten major aviation firms were formed. At this time, the national French aircraft industry began to gradually give up its positions, and aviation equipment was purchased abroad.

In the 1939 year, thanks to state intervention, annual production increased to 3200 aircraft, which, incidentally, did not prevent the German occupation and the transfer of control over the aircraft industry to the Germans. During the occupation period, some enterprises carried out orders for the Luftwaffe, releasing reconnaissance, transport and auxiliary vehicles. Aircraft engines of French production were equipped with Henschel-129 attack aircraft, Goth-244 and Messerschmitt-323 transport aircraft.

Unlike Germany and Austria, French industrial enterprises were hardly affected by the devastating attacks of British and American bombers.
This, as well as the formal entry of France among the countries of the winners, which resulted in the absence of restrictions on the development of combat aircraft, in contrast to Germany and Japan, made it possible to quickly resume production for the needs of the national Air Force.

The first post-war serial French combat aircraft was the Dassault MD-450 "Hurricane". The prototype flew 28 February 1949 of the year. It stood on the engine "Nin" 102 with take-off 2270 kg, manufactured under license by the company "Hispano-Syuiza."

Aircraft MD 450 "Hurricane" was intended for use during the day in simple weather conditions as a single fighter and fighter-bomber.

The main armament of the MD 450 "Hurricane" were four guns of the 20 caliber type, mounted in the lower part of the fuselage. Under the wing, it was possible to hang various means of destruction of ground targets: 16 NUR Matra-Brandt T-10, bombs or tanks with napalm with a total weight of up to 500 kg under each wing.

The program to create this aircraft was a landmark event, talking about the post-war revival of the French aviation industry.
Firm "Dassault" in the design of "Hurricane" went on a rather conservative way. In the 1947 year, when this aircraft was designed, the first F-86 and MiG-15 jet fighters with a swept wing were already developed in the USA and the Soviet Union.

The designers chose a scheme that was quite common in the second half of 1940-s and was designed to achieve maximum speeds within 950 km / h. It was a nizkoplan with a straight wing and tail plumage of a small sweep, with a spindle-shaped fuselage of circular cross section. The maximum diameter of the fuselage, located approximately in the middle of the length of the machine, was determined by the dimensions of the centrifugal TRD compressor. The engine air intake was located in the nose of the aircraft.

The first official order for serial "Hurricanes" was issued to Avions Marcel Dassault 31 August 1950. It provided for the construction of 150 aircraft. In September, the French Air Force 1951 issued a second order - on 100 aircraft. In 1952, an additional contract was signed on 100 Hurricanes.

The first serial "Hurricane" lifted December 5 1951 into the air. In the course of serial production, the aircraft was constantly improved, equipment and weapons were changed, and the design was being finalized.

French Air Force deliveries began in 1952 year, the aircraft entered service with three air groups. In 1955, these fighters began replacing with other aircraft. The last Hurricane was decommissioned only in the 1961 year, and around 50 machines were used as training until the middle of the 60's.

"Hurricanes" were exported to India and Israel, where they took part in the hostilities, mainly they were involved in providing aviation support to ground units. Later, the Israeli “Hurricanes” were transferred to El Salvador and took part in a protracted civil war, in service until the beginning of the 80's.

French aviation elegance. Part 1

"Hurricane" Israeli Air Force

The creation of the "Hurricane" Dassault managed to gain a reputation as a reliable and promising developer and manufacturer of jet combat aircraft. The Hurricane became the supporting platform from which the successes of the Dassault company, as well as the entire French aviation industry, began in the creation of modern fighters.

After the success of the "Hurricane" at its base was developed by a more advanced machine. The plane known as MD.452 "Mister" I (Mystere - mystery, mystery) took off at the beginning of 1951goda. The first prototype "Mr. I" was a "Hurricane" with a swept wing of 30 degrees.

The next step was the "Mr." II, which was built in series. The fighter accelerated at sea level to 1040 km / h.

For the French Air Force, 180 fighters of various modifications were ordered - Mister IIA (with Rolls-Royce Tay Mk.250 engine), Mister IIB (with Rolls-Royce Tay Mk.250 engine and two 30-mm DEFA 541 guns), Mister IIC (with SNECMA Atar 101D engines, later 101F-2 and two 30-mm DEFA 551 cannons). The aircraft was in service with the French Air Force from 1952 year to the end of 50-x.

In 1952, the MD.454 "Mister IV" was created on the basis of the MD.452 "Mister II". The new fighter was designed to achieve supersonic speeds in horizontal flight. Although MD.454 "Mr." IV outwardly resembled its predecessor, it was a new project, with improved aerodynamic shapes of the fuselage and wings.

The order to manufacture the first batch of 225 serial “Mister IV” was received in April 1953 of the year, the first 50 aircraft received TRD Tay Mk 250A, their maximum take-off weight was 7250 kg, and the maximum speed - 1110 km / h (M = 1,035). Later, these aircraft re-equipped with more powerful turbojet engines Verdon 350, which increased the combat load and allowed the use of aircraft as fighter-bomber.

The serial “Mister” IVA was armed with two 30-mm DEFA 551 cannons (bottom of the fuselage), under the fuselage behind the guns it was possible to hang a MATRA block on the 55 NAR, and on the four underwing pylons - 500-kg or 250-kg bomb, 480-liter napalm tanks, or MATRA blocks on the 19 NAR, or six 105-mm HAP.

Total was built 451 fighter, including 242 for the French Air Force.
The plane was popular in the global market: India bought 110 units, Israel bought 60.

The combat debut of both the French and Israeli “Misters” took place during the Suez crisis. The fighter was used in various conflicts - during the Suez Company in the 1956 year, by India against Pakistan in the 1965 year, and during the Six Day War by Israel in the 1967 year. He was in service in France until the 1975 year, but his training version was preserved until the beginning of the 80-x.
In 1975, Salvador bought 18 aircraft in Israel. During the civil war, they were used to strike ground targets. 27 January 1982, the 5 aircraft were blown up as a result of sabotage at Ilopango airbase.

"Super Mister" B.2 was the latest type of fighter in the model range of leading their "lineage" from the "Hurricane".

Aircraft armament consists of two DEFA cannons (caliber 30 mm) and 35 projectiles located in a special compartment of the fuselage. Under the wing of the plane can carry two containers with 38 unguided rockets each, two 500-kilogram bombs. SD type "Matra" or additional fuel tanks.

This supersonic aircraft is close in its data to the Soviet MiG-19 and the American F-100 "Supersabyr" produced a relatively small circulation, since the start of production in the 1957 year, only two 180 machines were produced in two years, most of which entered service with the French Air Force. In the French Air Force aircraft served to 1977 year.

In the 1958-60, the Israelis got the 24 new aircraft, and at the beginning of the 1967. - more 11 machines that were in use. Israeli aircraft happened to take part in conflicts 1967 - 1973 of the year.

In 1975, after the adoption of the Mirage III, the Super-Mister’s career in the Israeli Air Force ended.
However, it was not necessary to put an end to the combat biography of the aircraft, but at the same time 18 of the former Israeli Super-Misters (12 flight and 6 as sets of spare parts) were sold to Honduras.

"Super Mr." Air Force Honduras 1976 Year

All the delivered vehicles were capable of carrying air-to-air Shafrir air defense missiles. In Honduras, the aircraft entered the fighter squadron, based at the airfield near the city of La Ceiba, 170 km north of the capital Tegucigalpa. At the new place at the beginning of the 80's. "Super-Misters" distinguished themselves in numerous armed incidents in areas bordering Nicaragua. Their pilots acted against both the ground units of the Sandinistas and their aircraft. For example, 13 September 1984, during fights near the city of Xalapa, one of the pilots managed to shoot down Nicaraguan Mi-8 with cannon fire.

After the end of the civil war in Nicaragua in 1990, tensions at the border subsided, and fighters began to rise into the air less and less. In 1996, they were put on conservation right under the open sky. It would seem that their career was over, but life is full of surprises. Through Honduras, transit routes for drug delivery to the United States were laid, and the country's airspace became constantly disrupted by aircraft carrying illegal cargo. Having very limited capabilities to combat air smugglers, the country's Air Force leadership in 1998 decided to re-commission the remaining 11 "Super Misters", after repairing and replacing equipment with foreign aid, after which the aircraft took off several more years.

A truly breakthrough machine that has received worldwide recognition has become the Mirage III. The aircraft was originally developed as a multi-purpose, capable of performing tasks for the destruction of ground and air targets, with a maximum speed at a high altitude of at least 2M.

The first prototype, named Mirage IIIA, took to the 12 on May 1958, and on October 24, while performing the next test flight, the fighter reached speed in Mach 2,0 in horizontal flight at 12 500 meters.

The aircraft was designed according to the tailless scheme with a low-lying triangular wing, the sweep angle on the leading edge is 61 degrees. The single cabin located in front of the fuselage is equipped with an ejection seat RM4 from Martin-Baker. An Atar-9C turbojet engine with a forcing load of 6200 kgf is used as an aircraft power plant.

The serial modification was the Mirage IIIC, the first cars were delivered in 1963 year. The Mirage IIIC had the same wing area and height as its predecessor, the Mirage IIIIA, but the fuselage length increased to 14.73 m. The maximum weight of the aircraft was 11800 kg, and the normal weight ranged from 7960 kg to 9730 kg. The fighter was equipped with radar "Cyrano"

Initially, the aircraft had three pylons under armament under the center section - one under the fuselage and two under the middle part of the wing, according to 500 kg of load on each. For air combat, the fighter usually carried one R.511 rocket on the center point of the suspension and two outboard tanks with a capacity of 500 l each. When flying short distances instead of tanks, Sidewinder missiles were suspended. Later, the R.511 rocket was replaced by the Matra R.530 with a range of 18 km, with a semi-active or infrared head. In front of the fuselage was a compartment with two 30-mm cannon "Def", with 125 ammunition shells per gun.

For ground attacks, an 454-kilogram bomb was used, which could be hung under any pylon, NURSs were installed in place of fuel tanks. Subsequently, for the "Sidewinder" installed pylons, which were placed on the outside of the wings. Suspended tanks for 1200 liters each, suspended under the wing, were used for training flights and flights.

The Mirage became a truly multi-purpose aircraft, with the start of the entry into service of the IIIE modification. While the IIIC was used as a clean interceptor, the Mirage IIIE was created not only as a fighter to gain air superiority, but could also be used to attack ground targets not only with conventional bomb armament, but also using tactical nuclear bomb AN -52.

The fighter was widely exported and was officially in service with 20 countries, in some of them Mirage III is still in service. In Australia, licensed production was established.

Mirage III Australian Air Force

In a number of countries, in order to adapt to local conditions and increase combat and operational qualities, the aircraft underwent significant re-equipment. Total released 1422 aircraft of various modifications.

Google Earth Satellite Image: Brazilian Mirages at Anapolis Air Base

Fighting career "Mirage" was very intense. He participated in Middle Eastern conflicts, in the Indo-Pakistani 1971 war of the year, as well as in numerous armed confrontations of the second half of the 20 of the 20th century. Due to the relatively small load on the wing, economical and powerful engine, the presence of powerful cannon armament in combination with the Mirage III guided missiles proved to be a very serious enemy in air combat.
Along with the Soviet MiG-21, the French Mirage III became one of the most belligerent jet fighters of the second half of the 20 of the 20th century.

The Mirage 5 was created when the Israeli Air Force needed an inexpensive and easy-to-pilot strike aircraft to perform tasks in the daytime. To meet the needs of the customer, Dassault decided to create a new vehicle based on the Mirage IIIC multi-purpose fighter with a significant simplification of the design. Major changes were made to electronic equipment. The Cyrano radar was replaced with the cheaper Aida, the rest of the equipment was also simplified. To maintain the centering of the aircraft and improve combat performance in the vacated places were installed additional fuel tanks. The Mirage 5 carried on board the 32% more fuel than the Mirage III. Compared to the prototype, the number of suspension points for armament was increased on the new aircraft. The maximum combat load was 4000 kg.

Mirage 5 French Air Force

From the beginning of 70's Mirazh, 5 was widely exported, mostly in small batches. There were many different modifications created according to the requirements of various foreign customers. Produced by 582 aircraft.

In Israel, after the introduction of the embargo against this country, on the basis of the documentation obtained by the Israeli intelligence, its modified non-licensed versions known as: and Dagger were produced.

The Nasher was an exact replica of the 5 Mirage, with the exception of avionics produced in Israel, the Martin Becker ejection seats, and weapons that included Israeli air-to-air missiles. The 51 single-seat fighter Nasher and 10 twin-seaters were built.
The production of "Nasher" was discontinued when in Israel the work on the "Fir" fighter project was completed - a more advanced design based on the Mirage III airframe.

Kfir parked with weapons

Instead of the French Atar 9 engine, the “Fir” had a J79 engine (it was also used on the American F-104 Starfighter and F-4 Phantom II aircraft)

The aircraft, designated the “Mirage” 50, was a modification of the “Mirage” 5 with more advanced equipment and a more powerful engine from the “Mirage” F1.

In 1963, Dassot began mass-produced Mirage IV.
This aircraft was specifically designed as a long-range supersonic bomber for the French nuclear deterrent forces. In just 5 years, 66 machines were built.
Bombers had a high degree of reliability; in the first seven years of operation, only six accidents occurred.

The maximum take-off weight of the bomber reached 33 475 kg. At high altitude, the aircraft accelerated to 2340 km / h, on the ground to 1225 km / h. The combat radius is about 1200 km.

At the end of the 60-ies, all aircraft were upgraded, which allowed to go to low-altitude flights. At the beginning of the 80-s, the leading role in the strategic forces of France finally passed to land-based and sea-based ballistic missiles. 12 aircraft "Mirage" IVA were converted into strategic reconnaissance aircraft, photographic equipment was placed in the outboard container. In service with bomber squadrons, only 33 aircraft remained and four vehicles were put into reserve. As a nuclear bomber, the aircraft is completely outdated. To increase the combat potential of the Mirage, in 1983, they decided to carry out a radical modernization of all its systems.

First of all, modernization concerned the weapons system. Entering the modern air defense zone on a 60-model car was tantamount to suicide. Only a guided missile could allow hitting targets without entering the air defense zone. "Mirage" decided to equip the newest missile with a combined rocket-ramjet engine and a 150 Kt-ASMP warhead. To do this, instead of a nuclear bomb, a special suspended pylon was installed on the bomber and the on-board equipment was modified, adding an inertial navigation system and an Arkan radar with a terrain mapping mode.

Immediately before launching, the navigator of the Mirage entered the launch point coordinates into the inertial rocket system. After the ASMP reset, its solid-fuel booster was activated, which in five seconds accelerated the rocket to the speed of M = 2. When the powder charge of the accelerator burned out, the marching ramjet engine accelerated the ASMP to M = 3 at mid-flight altitudes. The range of the missile is highly dependent on the launch height and flight profile. If the ASMP flies at high and medium altitudes, it can fly 250 km, if the rocket flies to the target at a low altitude, then the range reaches 80 km. The autonomous guidance system is inertial, and because of this, the accuracy of hitting the target is not high, the probable circular deviation is about 150 m, but for a nuclear warhead this value is quite acceptable. Starting weight rocket 860 kg.

Missile carriers (18 aircraft) received the designation "Mirage" IVR. In 1996, the decision was made to remove the bomber from service. Airplanes began to write off gradually on the development of the resource. In combat units, they were replaced by tactical fighters Mirage 2000N.

Based on:Авиационная_промышленность_Франции
Articles from this series:
French aviation elegance. Part 1
French aviation elegance. Part 2
French aviation elegance. Part 3
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  1. Fitter65
    Fitter65 4 December 2013 08: 48
    Mirages are beautiful cars, but I like Mirage F1 more than something like a brazen sparrow. But remembering French bombers of the 20s and 30s, I don’t remember whose truth is the statement-mockery of aerodynamics.
    1. Bongo
      4 December 2013 14: 53
      Yes, the "Mirage" F1 is a very beautiful car, but it has not received such widespread popularity as the "Mirage" -3. Then the Americans crossed the road with the F-5 and F-16.
      1. zyablik.olga
        zyablik.olga 8 December 2013 12: 01
        You have forgotten about MiGs.
  2. Alex 241
    Alex 241 4 December 2013 09: 00
    The thing is that the French designers took the path of remaking civilian vehicles in the military, giving them unusual functions, which makes such an absurdity.
    1. Bongo
      4 December 2013 14: 54
      I wonder what kind of French fighter converted from a civilian airliner?
  3. Alex 241
    Alex 241 4 December 2013 09: 03
    .................................................. ...............
  4. klimpopov
    klimpopov 4 December 2013 11: 09
    However, the "Mr." IVA is remotely
    someone reminds

    Although it may have seemed
    Chet photo is not inserted
    1. Alex 241
      Alex 241 4 December 2013 11: 42
      Klim I welcome rather F-84 or F-84F.
  5. klimpopov
    klimpopov 4 December 2013 11: 54
    Klim I welcome rather F-84 or F-84F.

    Hello! Something the computer is buggy or VO at the expense of kamentov.
    Well, all the aircraft of that time have something in common, and the F-84 for me is so much more Mig - 15
    Well, compare the profile of the Frenchman
    damn again with photos crap (
  6. ramin_serg
    ramin_serg 4 December 2013 11: 55
    Mirages proved worthy in local wars of the last 50 years
  7. plohoy
    plohoy 4 December 2013 12: 12
    Well, I don’t know ... the appearance at least sucks .... the French have some kind of dinosaur cars or planes))
  8. Argon
    Argon 4 December 2013 12: 35
    With all due respect to the French aircraft industry, the beginning, its independent activity should be considered exactly the "Mirage-3" (All "hurricanes" and "secrets", although they were quite reliable machines, have "muddy" roots and, in general, lower potential than the same them Soviet and American machines.) The French quite accurately determined the "golden mean" between a simple and reliable light fighter (MiG-21), and a breakthrough fighter (as they were then called), with perfect avionics, but as a rule, the machine is far from small (F -4), both in MGH and in cost. The price and versatility determined the success of the "troika". However, it should be noted that the choice of the "tailless" scheme with a triangular wing for such a machine, although it was optimal, from the point in view of the minimum amount of R&D and the maximum "carrying capacity", doomed the aircraft to a number of hostile defects associated with control. In particular, the machines in such a scheme negatively and sometimes unpredictably react to giving the RSS from themselves, making the implementation of some elements of higher pi lotage impossible (here the pilot of the "mirage" was in the position of the pilots of the first "Spitfires" - the reasons are different, the effect is one). The relatively large wing area is the reason for a whole "bouquet" of restrictions on work "near the ground." The takeoff and landing characteristics are such that allow us to speak of "Merage-3" as a machine accessible to the pilot "without a class".
  9. Bongo
    4 December 2013 12: 47
    In my opinion. Supermister and F-100 Supersebr have a lot in common.
  10. Panikovsky
    Panikovsky 4 December 2013 13: 52
    Thank you, the article is tasty and nutritious, we look forward to continuing.
    1. Alex 241
      Alex 241 4 December 2013 18: 59
      1. mamba
        mamba 4 December 2013 22: 25
        Handsomely. It looks like they are "ironing" the water over the coast of Normandy. good
  11. samoletil18
    samoletil18 4 December 2013 21: 20
    If he hadn’t seen our fighters, he might have marveled at the beauty of the French.
  12. Vital 33
    Vital 33 5 December 2013 11: 59
    There is a French film "Knights of the Sky", who have not seen I advise you to see, there is a damn beautiful shooting.
  13. samolet il-76
    samolet il-76 12 December 2013 11: 18
    But I think the Su-27 is prettier!