EMZ Myasishcheva known for the creation of strategic bombers and high-altitude intelligence officers. Together with many other enterprises of the domestic defense industry complex at the turn of the century, the enterprise in Zhukovsky suffered serious losses in the struggle for survival and, by the decree of the Russian President No. 25 “On the National Aviation Industry Center”, entered the United Aircraft Corporation ". Now EMZ is engaged in various projects, including the restoration of airworthiness of marine anti-submarine aircraft with the conversion to the IL-2011H variant. In 217, he took up flying laboratories to study the atmosphere. As a platform, we chose a serial airliner built at the Saratov aircraft factory in the 38 year. The technical project was developed by the Central Aerological Observatory of Roshydromet.
In the course of work at the EMP, the aircraft received research equipment from a number of Russian institutes, which allows measuring up to a thousand atmospheric parameters. On board, there are seven hardware-software complexes, 76 of various devices, more 50 external sensors, technical means of active influences, two Doppler radars and a complex for measuring radiation balance and remote measurements of the underlying surface, which allows to obtain an image of the surface in different spectral ranges. To work with the instrument complexes installed 14 seats onboard operators.
At the presentation, the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Sergey Donskoy called the new aircraft a very high-quality flying laboratory that can measure so many parameters that not a single orbital satellite can compare with it. “The spectrum of organizations that can participate in research is quite wide and includes the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Emergency Situations and other security agencies,” Donskoy stressed. It should be noted that the special meteorological variants of the An-26 and Il-18 “Cyclone” available to the military department have been re-equipped or written off.
Presidential adviser, climate special representative Alexander Bedritsky said: “Five years from idea to implementation is a relatively short time, taking into account that the project started in the years of the global economic crisis.” According to him, the Yak-XNUMHD is a unique tool for various ministries. Noting the difficulty of installing the latest scientific and meteorological complexes, Bedritsky continued: “A large amount of design documentation, almost like when creating a new aircraft, was completed in a short time. We can safely say that the Roshydromet laboratory aircraft has a whole range of modern solutions. In terms of composition and range of opportunities there is no equal in the world. ” In conclusion, he expressed confidence that the product of the Yakovlev Design Bureau and EMZ would become the first sign, followed by other research aircraft.
The 2008 program of the year included the construction of two flying laboratories. In addition to the Yak-42, it should be an aircraft of the M-55 type “Geophysics”, an 80-90 high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft, which needs to be restored to airworthiness, extended service life, repair and refit. As the speakers at the ceremony in Zhukovsky noted, for this the EMZ team has the necessary personnel, experience, industrial and flight base.
If the Yak-42D is a passenger airliner, the M-55 was created as a military scout based on the M-17 high-altitude interceptor. Back in the 50s, the USSR air defense faced the difficult task of destroying automatic drifting balloons (ADA) of the United States and NATO. Filled with photo and radio equipment, they crossed the country from west to east, using the prevailing winds. Shoot down the ADA with a fighter aviation and anti-aircraft missiles were extremely difficult and expensive. The multi-sectional design allowed balloons to continue flying after hitting several fighter cannon shells. To combat the ADA, the USSR Air Defense Forces attracted the Yak-25RV, but this rectangular-winged machine had a flight speed at a height that was too high for the pilot to precisely aim. Attempts to modernize the Yak with the help of American technology, which became partially available thanks to the U-1960 Francis Powers destroyed in May 2, at first seemed promising, but did not reach the metal stage.
It required the creation of a fundamentally new high-altitude aircraft with the maximum, and not fragmentary use of modern technologies. The M-17 project was launched in 1970 in the design bureau under the leadership of Vladimir Myasishchev. A special aerodynamic profile П-173-9, supercritical and high-bearing, was developed for the machine. The required thrust-to-weight ratio was provided by one turbojet RD-36-51В engine, created on the basis of the power plant of the civil liner Tu-144. The prototype was built at the plant in Kumertau, it was put to the test at the end of 1978, after Myasishchev died. Unfortunately, the attempt to lift the car into the air ended with the death of test pilot Kira Chernobrovkina.
Subsequent samples were collected at the Smolensk aircraft plant. In 1982, a second aircraft appeared, significantly different from the previous one. He had an improved control system in the roll channel, increased area and curvature of the wing. After assembling and checking the unit was dismantled for transportation to Zhukovsky, where he 26 1982 on May and went to the first flight under the control of Eduard Cheltsov. The plane set a series of world records, rising almost 22 kilometers. Having completed a series of flights for environmental purposes, in 1990, the M-17 was called the Stratosphere. By that time, the interception of the ADA lost its relevance, but the military wanted a scout. M-55 made the first flight in 1988.
Although at first glance both models are difficult to distinguish, in fact, a practically new aircraft was created. From the previous design survived only landing gear. The car became a twin-engine, received more economical dual-circuit turbofan power units D30-B12. The fuselage was redesigned, significantly increasing the internal volumes for reconnaissance equipment. The wing area decreased by six square meters - to 131,6, the wingspan - by three meters - to 37,46. The redesigned aircraft became closer to the classical design, acquired a “real” fuselage and a wing center section. Maximum take-off weight increased from 18,4 to 24 tons. The analog computer was replaced by a digital one, the roll control channel was reworked. The volume of fuel tanks decreased slightly, but due to the efficiency of the new engines, the flight duration exceeded six hours at an altitude of 17 000 meters. The practical ceiling remained at 21 550 meters, 35 – 40 minutes are required for climb.
The advantages of the M-55 over the American U-2 include the supercritical wing profile and economy. Like M-17, one of M-55 from 1994, the year began to attract environmental tasks. He flew to Italy, Finland, and many other countries of the world. Like any super-high-flying aircraft, the M-55 requires special control skills from a pilot. As a result of cuts in the defense budget, at the turn of the century, four flight instances were collected; now only two have survived. Modern Russia does not have high-tech enemies like the USSR, so it makes no sense to use M-55 for its intended purpose. So the re-equipment of military aircraft into civilians remains the only way to preserve unique vehicles and qualified flight personnel.