Military Review

Multi-purpose fighter P-38 "Lightning"

The P-38 Multi-Purpose Lightning fighter (Lightning) was notable for its unusual appearance. This machine, designed in the USA at the end of 1930 by Lockheed’s engineers, was a monoplane fighter with two tail fuselage beams, on which were installed horizontal and two-tail vertical plumage and a central gondola in which the cockpit and a bow-mounted machine gun were mounted battery as well as the front landing gear. It is worth noting that it was the first fighter in the world with a nose landing gear. The prototype of the aircraft under the designation XP-38 for the first time rose in the sky 27 January 1939 year. Two weeks later, he managed to fly the entire continent with only two landings for refueling, but eventually the car was broken when landing in Mitchell Fidd. After numerous modifications, the aircraft in the P-38D modification was put into service in August 1941. In total, during the production from 1940 to 1945, a little more than 10 thousands of P-38 fighters of various modifications were produced.

Today, few people know that the plane did not immediately receive its sonorous name "Lighting". The British called him that first, and only after that it stuck as an official in the US Air Force. Initially, the Americans expected to name the plane "Atlanta". At the same time, in April, the Lockheed company received large orders from England and France, a total of two of these countries were going to acquire 1940 fighters of this type. However, for obvious reasons, the order of the aircraft for France was never implemented, and with the help of one of the English pilots, his name stuck with the aircraft, with which he entered history - Lightning (eng. "Lightning").

During the Second World War, this fighter became a truly multi-purpose. The Allies used it as an escort fighter, fighter-interceptor, fighter-bomber, leader aircraft, reconnaissance vehicle. Individual copies of "Layting" were truly unique. For example, there were machines designed for setting smoke screens and even evacuating the wounded in a special hanging container. The Germans nicknamed the P-38 fighter "lilhe-tailed devil", and the Japanese called the phrase "two aircraft - one pilot."

At the time of its creation, the P-38 fighter was literally stuffed with a variety of technical innovations. These innovations included a triple-support chassis with a nose-stalk, first implemented on a mass-produced fighter. This solution allowed us to achieve simplified piloting of the aircraft during takeoff and landing. In addition, the aircraft received two powerful engines with turbochargers. And, finally, the very aerodynamic layout of the machine was distinguished by its singularity. All of the above made Lockheed P-38 Lightning a unique combat aircraft of its age. One of the pilots of the 14 th fighter air group, which first flew to the sky on this plane at the beginning of 1942, expressed his impressions of the fighter: “On this plane I am ready to fight anywhere, in various conditions, with the confidence that I am in the hands of the best fighter in the world. "

For the first time, the creation of two-engine fighters began to be talked about during the First World War. The argument of the supporters of such a scheme was that such an aircraft would have greater survivability, and it would also be much more convenient for it to deploy powerful offensive weapons in front of the fuselage. Without resorting to this to reduce the rate of fire and synchronization. The ideas of creating two-seat and three-seat fighters were considered in order to provide fire cover for the rear hemisphere. However, in order to build a twin-engine fighter that would not be inferior to ordinary single-engine in terms of maneuverability and speed, it was necessary, first, to design powerful and lightweight engines that would allow achieving approximately the same weight as single-engine versions . Secondly, to design and produce a robust fuselage, wing and tail structure, which would ensure that the load on the wing - the ratio of the mass of the fighter to the area of ​​its wing. Such designs and engines became available to aircraft designers only at the beginning of the 1930s. For example, in the Soviet Union, Tupolev offered a variant of the twin-engined Mi-3 (ANT-21) fighter, and in Hitler's Germany, the Messerschmitt fighter Bf.110 was designed.

design Features

The unusual scheme of a two-girder aircraft with a mid wing and motors located in front of each of the beams was not chosen by chance. Such a scheme on the P-38 Lightning fighter was determined by a technical task that could not be performed using the traditional single-engine layout. To the two-motor scheme, the designers were forced to apply the requirements for maximum speed, range and rate of climb.

At the same time, the two-beam scheme implemented in the aircraft is far from the only thing that predetermined in the future the excellent flight characteristics of the fighter and distinguished it from many other representatives of the fighter aviation times of the second world war. One of the main differences was the combination of a very high specific wing load (almost 1,5 times higher than was accepted at that time) with very powerful Alisson liquid-cooled engines, which were distinguished by a V-shaped arrangement of cylinders. These engines, among other things, had turbochargers that worked using the energy of exhaust gases. Turbocompressors made it possible to maintain engine power even at substantial heights. Another feature of the Layting was its excellent aerodynamics, which were based not so much on fairings and lifts as a well-designed wing, with an extension that was unusual for aircraft of those years.

On a closer look, the Lockheed P-38 Lightning fighter is also very impressed with the use of load-bearing walls. The sides and the cockpit floor, the sides of the wheel arches in the fuselage and beams are flat shields made of duralumin. The fact that we are not in the traditional aviation set of frames with stringers, obviously, while the design is light and durable. The aircraft armament compartment was easily accessible thanks to the presence of two large hatches. Projectiles and bullets fly out of the plane through the canals, the outer ends of which are sealed with special paper in normal conditions (special paper) in order to provide an aerodynamically clean surface when flying out of combat conditions. At the same time, with the first fired ammunition, the paper was just torn.

Created in the USA, the P-38 twin-engine fighter was all-metal, its trim on 100% was attached by riveting in the floor. He became the first in the world adopted a fighter with a turbocharger and power in the control system. At the time of its creation, it was the fastest and furthest fighter in the world. These qualities allowed the car to perfectly express themselves in the Pacific theater of operations. Along with this, the downside of the aircraft's innovativeness was its operational problems in the military, and the unsatisfactory supply organization did not allow the aircraft to fully realize its full potential.

The power plant of the fighter was represented by two Allison V-engines with power up to 1475 hp. It is curious that the screws of the engines rotated in different directions, therefore in the modifications of the engines it was indicated - left / right. The propellers of the aircraft rotated in different directions in order to reduce the flow turbulence over the tail. In the tail beams of the aircraft were located engine systems. The supercharger in a semi-submerged state was placed flush with the leading edge of the fighter's wing. The engine cooling radiators were located in the air intakes protruding behind the wing.

The wing of the fighter was a completely free-carrying structure, which consisted of two consoles, a center section and two tips. The metal outer skin of the wing at certain intervals was reinforced by the inner corrugated skin. The front edges of the wing contained fuel tanks with a capacity of 235 liters each. The main fuel tanks of the aircraft, each of 340 liters, were located behind the side member in the center section along with the reserve tanks on the 227 liters installed in front of the main side member. The internal fuel supply on board was 1605 liters, in addition to this, the aircraft could carry two 568-liter or 1135-liter discharged fuel tanks.

The fuselage gondola contained the cockpit, radio equipment and weapons. The pilot's cockpit lantern consisted of two transparent side panels sliding along the guides, an optically flat, bullet-proof visor and a drop-down top panel fliping back. The cockpit booking included armored plates on the front bulkhead, below and behind his seat. Radio equipment was mounted at the rear of the fighter cockpit.

The beams consisted of power plants, which were located in front of the main spar, the front section attached to the wing, and the rear section, which contained air intakes and cooling radiators. In the right beam there was one oxygen cylinder, and in the left two more. The tail of the aircraft had two rudders and vertical keels. The main landing gear of the fighter was located under the turbochargers in the front sections of the beams and retracts, and the front landing gear was in front of the fuselage nacelle immediately behind the weapon bay and retracted into the nacelle also back. All landing gear tightly closed enough shutters, not protruding into the air stream.

All small arms of the aircraft were located in its nose. This approach allowed designers to eliminate the use of synchronizers for firing through a screw. The 20-mm gun was located in the center, below the heavy machine gun. Four 12,7-mm machine guns were one behind the other, thus solving the problem of placing ammunition, feeding cartridges and ejecting spent cartridges.

Combat application

Fighters Р-38 Lightning were widely used by the USAF during the Second World War, especially actively in the Pacific Ocean, as well as the Chinese-Burmese-Indian theater of military operations. In the south-western Pacific theater of war, these aircraft served as the main long-range fighter practically until the end of the war (until a sufficient number of single-engine P-51D Mustang entered the army). It is worth noting that two of the most successful fighter pilots in the history of military American aviation - Thomas McGuire (38 downed aircraft) and Richard Ira Bong (38 downed aircraft) flew precisely on the R-40 "Lighting". Also on this plane flew the author of the “Little Prince”, the famous French writer Antoine de Saint-Exupery, who died flying over the Mediterranean Sea in the summer of 1944. Presumably his plane was shot down by a German fighter, Bf.109.

There are P-38 fighters on the account and a very daring operation to eliminate the famous Japanese admiral Yamamoto. On April 17, 1943, 18 Lightning fighters attacked and shot down a G4M bomber, on which the famous admiral, as well as Zero fighters from his cover, attacked and shot down over one of the islands in the Pacific Ocean. As a result of this attack, the admiral died, for the Japanese imperial fleet it was an irreparable loss.

During the years of the Second World War, no P-38 Lightning fighter aircraft was supplied to the Soviet Union under Lend-Lease, although the USSR made the corresponding request. All fighters of this type, which eventually ended up in our country, were picked up after making forced landings in Eastern Europe. But even there these fighters were a rarity. Of the 162 airplanes of the Allies, which the Soviet troops found in the territory they occupied by mid-May 1945, there was only one P-38. In fact, of course, there were more, but not by much, and their condition left much to be desired.

For example, one such fighter made an emergency landing at Nagykeres near Budapest in January 1945. The fighter with the inscription "Pride of Jane" was engaged in escorting bombers, but was hit by an enemy and landed on a field covered with melted snow with a retracted landing gear. When landing the engine hoods were crumpled, and the screws were bent. The pilot was not injured and was evacuated from the crash site by a team of specialists from the Soviet 5 air army. Such a case was not the only one.

However, only one P-38 was able to bring in a state of airworthiness in the USSR. This fighter took part in the "shuttle" operations of American bombers from bases in Ukraine. The car made a forced landing and was abandoned. It was a fighter P-38L-1 with the words aboard the Blacks. For some time, this aircraft belonged to the 173-th long-range fighter regiment, which was armed with American A-20G, converted into heavy fighters. At the same time, only flying flights were carried out on “Lighting”. Initially, this regiment was based near Minsk, but then flew to Poland. Only after the war, the aircraft was transferred to the Air Force Research Institute for extensive testing.

Flight specifications of the P-38L:

Overall dimensions: length - 11,53 m, height - 3,91 m, wing span - 15,85 m, wing area - 30,43 m2.
Empty weight - 5800 kg.
Maximum take-off weight - 9789 kg.
The power plant - two 12-cylinder V-shaped engine Allison V-1710 XHUMXxXNNXX hp
The maximum flight speed is 667 km / h.
Cruising flight speed - 443 km / h.
Stalling speed - 170 km / h.
Practical range - 725 km.
Practical ceiling - 13 000 m.
Armament: 1X20-mm cannon Hispano M2 (150 ammunition shells), 4x12,7-mm machine gun M2 (500 ammunition), up to 10 127-mm NURS HVAR, up to 2 X908 kg bombsheets XNUMX-mm NURS HVAR, up to XNUMXXNUMX kg bombsheets XNUMX-mm NURS HVAR, up to XNUMX xNUMX kg bombsheets XNUMX-mm NURS HVAR, to XNUMX xNUMX kg bombs XNUMX-mm NURS HVAR, to XNUMX xNUMX kg bombs XNUMX-mm NURS HVAR, to XNUMX xNUMX kg bombsheets
Crew - 1 man.

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  1. miv110
    miv110 2 October 2015 06: 11 New
    And yet the R-38 is not so perfect as follows from the article and in a maneuvering battle accompanied by bombers on the Western Front, he did not show himself very well (just for some time the Allies did not have decent long-range fighter escorts), which required its replacement with others more sophisticated vehicles, in particular the R-59, having had childhood illnesses, quickly displaced Lightning as a ground attack aircraft. By the way, the author did not mention that in the USSR there was a serial 2-engine fighter Pe-3 (the project "100" was created in the late 30s and the famous "Pawn" was born from it - the workhorse of front-line aviation)
    1. svp67
      svp67 2 October 2015 06: 33 New
      Quote: miv110
      Still, the P-38 is not as perfect as the article suggests.

      This can be said about all planes that have already flown off and that fly, and most importantly, that will fly, otherwise development will simply not be necessary. The R-38 was the best of twin-engine aircraft of this class.
      By the way, Exupery flew and died on it ...
      1. Vladimirets
        Vladimirets 2 October 2015 07: 32 New
        Quote: svp67
        By the way, Exupery flew and died on it ...

        Exupery flew only for reconnaissance.
        1. svp67
          svp67 2 October 2015 16: 12 New
          Quote: Vladimirets
          Exupery flew only for reconnaissance.

          Exupery on the Lockheed F-5A-1-LO taxis to the parking lot after a reconnaissance flight in the spring of 1944
        2. gladcu2
          gladcu2 2 October 2015 23: 12 New

          By the way, intelligence is considered one of the most dangerous types of combat missions.
          In preparation for the operation, in order to conceal the movement of troops, reconnaissance aircraft were hunted. And they received rewards.
      2. inkass_98
        inkass_98 2 October 2015 08: 29 New
        Quote: svp67
        The R-38 was the best of the twin-engine aircraft of this class.

        I do not argue, but in fights in Europe such fighters did not justify themselves, so the P-38 was used mainly in battles with the Japanese. Neither the Me-110, nor the Pe-3, nor the same P-38 could compete in maneuverability with the best examples of single-engine fighters, so they quickly re-qualified as night modifications of fighters.
        Although the aircraft itself is beautiful, great development.
        1. Revolver
          Revolver 2 October 2015 09: 16 New
          Quote: inkass_98
          Neither the Me-110, nor the Pe-3, nor the same R-38 could compete with the best models of single-engine fighters in maneuverability, so they quickly changed to night modifications of the fighters.

          Not sure about the Pe-3, but both the Bf-110 and P-38 Lightning had a range that was not available for single-engine vehicles, at least until the appearance of the Mustang. Therefore, they were used as escort bombers. The logic is simple - an escort of hulking fighters is better than none, and it will be cheaper to lose a couple of fighters than one heavy bomber. Yes, and heavy fighters were not easy prey - yielding in horizontal maneuver, they were at least equal in vertical, and in armament superior to most opponents. The cannon and 4 large-caliber machine guns, but not spaced along the wing, but grouped in a gondola, gave the target the effect of a circular saw [buzzsaw]. So they justified themselves.
          1. svp67
            svp67 2 October 2015 15: 12 New
            Quote: Nagan
            Yes, and heavy fighters were not easy prey - yielding in horizontal maneuver, they were at least equal in vertical, and in armament superior to most opponents.

            You know, read this, especially the conclusions that ALWAYS surprised me:
            1. svp67
              svp67 2 October 2015 15: 13 New
              07.11.1944/XNUMX/XNUMX Reflection of the Allied raid

              On the morning of November 07.11.1944, XNUMX, American Lightnings attacked a convoy of Soviet troops that was passing near the city of Niš (Yugoslavia).
              Four fighters of the 866th IAP (288th Iad) rose to reflect the raid. Initially, the Lightings were taken by Soviet pilots for the German two-keel Fw-189 “frames”. They wondered where the Germans in the area had such an armada of 40 aircraft. Having removed the chassis, the fighters dispersed the maximum speed near the ground and climbed up with a candle. They immediately went into battle. The first attack, each pair shot down an enemy aircraft. Another couple arrived to help the four, and soon the entire regiment took off. One of the aircraft was led by A.I. Koldunov.
              The air battle flared up more and more. Unknown planes, dropping bombs, first tried to defend themselves, but, unable to withstand the onslaught of Soviet fighters, formed a "snake" to better cover each other with front machine gun fire, and began to leave towards the city. One of the “Yaks” swiftly dived from a height on a two-keel aircraft and opened fire. The 37-mm shell of his cannon exploded in the center section of the "frame", and, flaring like a torch, it fell to the ground. “Yak” rushed forward, but immediately fell under the fire of another bomber. Machine-gun fire landed in the cockpit of a fighter. "Pecking" his nose, he abruptly went down and crashed. The pilot died.
              The fight in the air continued. But Soviet pilots already realized that they were dealing with allies. A pair of fighters quickly went closer to the Americans. At the risk of being shot down, Koldunov came close to the leading “Lightning” and began to show with gestures that we were our allies. Guided by Koldunov Viktor Stepanov vigilantly guarded his commander. The American, obviously, understood the gestures and climbed south. The rest of the Lightnings followed. After escorting them to the top of the mountain, Soviet fighters shook their wings and turned back.
              1. svp67
                svp67 2 October 2015 15: 16 New
                The thunder seemed to fade away. But a second group of Lightnings appeared, numbering also about forty aircraft. And again the wild picture repeated itself. Aircraft one after another entered the peak and dropped bombs on a convoy of Soviet troops. The Yaks in the air rushed to meet them. They swiftly rushed between the Lightnings, showing them their markings. However, not all Americans stopped the bombing and shelling. The most "dull" had to be convinced by machine guns and cannons.
                A whole armada of aircraft circled over the festively decorated city with a roar. Alexander Koldunov, as for the first time, attached himself with his partner Viktor Stepanov to the leader of a group of American bombers and began to show him the way home. In the end, the Lightings were not so much at will as they were forced to stop attacking the highway and turned back.
                Later, the representative of the US Air Force referred to the loss of orientation crews. But even if this happened to the first group, the second could not repeat its mistake, since radio communication was maintained between them. The leader of the first group could inform the second that there were Soviet troops in the valley. However, the second group entered the same part of the column that their predecessors had just bombed and poured lead.
                In their defense, the Americans also claimed that their planes were storming the fascist troops, retreating from Greece to Trieste. This, too, was not true. German troops did not move near the city of Nis, but about four hundred kilometers from it.
                The US command apologized to the Soviet for this "incident." But in words you will not return those who died during the treacherous raid of the "allies". As a result of the raid, the commander of the rifle corps, General Stepanov, the father of the commander, A.I. Koldunov, Viktor Stepanov, also died.
                1. svp67
                  svp67 2 October 2015 15: 19 New
                  Headquarters 866 IAP
                  Nish, 7.11.1944 of the year, 16.00

                  7.11.44/12.50/12, 3 a group of 4 Lighting type aircraft attacked parts of the rifle corps of the 400rd Ukrainian Front, moving along the road from Niš to the west in the Chamurliya region. Four airplanes in the ranks of the extended bearing carried out attacks one at a time from N - 50 m with a lead to N - 1500 m. Two fours of Lightning in the ranks of the bearing went to H - 1 m. with fire ZA, 1 Lightning aircraft was shot down, which fell XNUMX km north of the airfield.
                  At 13.00:9, the on-duty pair Yak-866 13.05 IAP, the leading crew of Kryvonogih and the guided ml. l Shipul. At 6, 9 Yak-13.10 took off, the commander of the AE, Mr. Bondar, the commanders of the Art. l-Surnev, Art. L-Zheleznov, Art. lt Potsiba, pilots lt Zhestovsky and ml. L-Serdyuk. At 3 a pair of Yak-XNUMXs, leading to Mr. Koldunov and led by Krasyukov, took off.
                  The first pair, taking off, went with a right turn to approach with the attacking 4 lightning aircraft. 2 Lightning aircraft attacked a pair of Bentonids. Ml l Shipul made an attack on the lightning plane, which came on the second attack of the ground forces, lit it from the first attack, the latter crashed into the ground about 40 meters north of the Nis airfield, where it burned down. Lt. Krivonogih, fighting off the attack of 500 Lightning planes, lit one of them from a vertical maneuver, which the burning one fell 2-8 km north of the Nish airfield, on a mountain in a forest.
                  During the subsequent attack, Mr. Kryvonogih hit the tail of the next Lightning aircraft, for which ZA opened defensive fire. Having fallen into the explosions of the ZA shells, the plane of the Krivonogih lane smoked, made a coup and crashed into the ground 80 km northeast of the airfield with an angle of 85-3 degrees.
                  Take-off AE commander Mr. Bondar and artillery unit commanders l-Surnev and Art. Mr. Zheleznov, having determined that these were American planes of the Lightning type, tried not to engage in air combat with them. Attacked by single and pairs of lightning aircraft, maneuvered vertically and horizontally, trying to prevent them from firing. Art. lt Surnev shook the plane to let know that this was not the enemy, after which the lightning planes rolled off and the attacks stopped.
                  Pilot ml. lt Serdyuk, taking off alone, was immediately attacked by lightning aircraft. Coming out of the attack, he saw that one Lightning plane was attacking the Yak-9 plane, in turn attacked this plane, which immediately caught fire and fell 1 km northwest of the airfield.
                  In a subsequent attack ml. Lt Serdyuk attacked yet another Lightning, gave him two lines of a cannon and a machine gun, which was smoking and left with a decline in a north-westerly direction.
                  In the region of 2 km north of Nish, lt. Zhestovsky led a fight with a pair of Lightning, attacked one of them from above and behind, and knocked him out with cannon-machine gun fire, which was smoking and left with a decrease in a north-westerly direction.
                  The second Lightning aircraft from behind attacked L. Zhestovsky and set fire to his aircraft. L-Zhestovsky received a gunshot wound to his right leg, right side and toe of his right hand, jumped with a parachute and landed in the area of ​​the village of Kamenitsa, 8 km north of Nish, the plane burned down.
                  Art. after take-off, Potsiba climbed a height of 2000 m and joined the group of 12 Lightning, who approached the airfield with a course of 100 degrees. With a wiggle, he let know that it was his plane and began to point to his airfield. Lightning aircraft did not fire, turned around and left with a course of 240 degrees. At that time, as many as 60 Lightning planes approached from the west, which met with the 1st group, turned around and headed west.
                  Lt Krasyukov, having flown out and identified American planes, did not enter the battle. I watched as in the region of 1 km north of the aerodrome, the Yak-9 plane fell to the ground burning.
                2. svp67
                  svp67 2 October 2015 15: 21 New
                  In an aerial battle, Lightning aircraft shot down 2 Yak-9 aircraft. Pilot ml. lt Shipulya died, lt Zhestovsky escaped by parachute. L-Kryvonogih, shot down by our FOR, died.
                  In this battle, according to observations from the ground, behind the fire of ZA and our fighter planes 5 lightning planes were shot down.

                  CONCLUSION: A flying group of Lightning planes, obviously, mistakenly attacked a convoy of our troops in connection with the loss of detailed orientation, accepting this area as enemy territory.
                  In an aerial battle of Yak-9 aircraft with Light aircraft, the latter showed good horizontal maneuverability and when conducting an air battle on turns, the advantage remained for the Light aircraft, which easily came into the tail of the Yak-9 aircraft, which had a much larger turn radius than the Light aircraft.
                  On a vertical maneuver, the Yak-9 had an advantage over the Lightning aircraft.
              2. The comment was deleted.
        2. enot73
          enot73 2 October 2015 12: 59 New
          Quote: inkass_98
          Neither the Me-110, nor the Pe-3, nor the same R-38 could compete in maneuverability with the best examples of single-engine fighters,
          However, the German "frame" FV - 189, built according to the scheme. A similar lightning scheme was a highly maneuverable machine and was a difficult target for fighters. After the war, an analogue of the PV-189-Su-12 was even developed in the GCC.
          1. Vladimirets
            Vladimirets 2 October 2015 16: 24 New
            Quote: enot73
            German "frame" FV - 189, built according to the scheme. a similar lightning pattern was a highly maneuverable machine

            With one caveat: at high altitudes.
            Quote: enot73
            was a difficult target for fighters

            Mostly thanks to a good defensive concept.
          2. yehat
            yehat 28 June 2016 11: 46 New
            the maneuverability of the frame was, but was not something special. Just in addition to maneuverability there was excellent visibility, which allowed us to start the evasion maneuver and dangerous defensive weapons in time. At the same time, the frame often fell into battle with an excess in height, which complicated the attack of fighters.
      3. murriou
        murriou 7 October 2016 08: 21 New
        About Exupery, the article was just said. If you read it, of course wink
    2. Bongo
      Bongo 2 October 2015 08: 49 New
      Quote: miv110
      Nevertheless, the P-38 is not so perfect as follows from the article, and in a maneuvering battle accompanied by bombers on the Western Front, he did not show himself very well (just for some time the Allies did not have worthy fighter escorts for long-range escort), which required its replacement by others more advanced machines, in particular P-59 having recovered from childhood illnesses, Lightning quickly superseded the role of attack aircraft.

      I apologize, but the P-59 Aircomet is the first American jet fighter (pictured), which was used only for educational purposes.
    3. Bayonet
      Bayonet 2 October 2015 09: 17 New
      Quote: miv110
      By the way, the author did not mention that in the USSR there was a serial 2-engine fighter Pe-3

      Maybe because the article was about R-38, and not about Pe-3. hi
  2. fa2998
    fa2998 2 October 2015 07: 26 New
    Quote: miv110
    And yet the R-38 is not as perfect as it follows from the article and in maneuverable combat

    The Americans made a plane! Many countries tried to create a twin-engine fighter, but they were made by night fighters or bombers (Me-110, Pe-2,3). Of course, the twin-engine loses to a single-engine fighter, but the Lightning was at the level. Plus a powerful battery and range. hi
  3. parusnik
    parusnik 2 October 2015 08: 14 New
    in the Soviet Union, Tupolev proposed the option of a twin-engine fighter Mi-3 (ANT-21) And there was also the ANT-23 (I-12) “Bauman Komsomolets”, the design of aircraft B began in the spring of 1929. V.N. Chernyshev was appointed as the leading engineer for the aircraft. On November 30, 1930, the design of the fighter was approved. The aircraft was an all-metal monoplane of the original layout: there was no fuselage as such, the pilot was in a gondola placed in the middle of the center section, in the front and rear parts of which there were two Gnom-Ron Jupiter VI engines with a capacity of 480 hp each, which rotated the pulling and pushing screws. The plumage was mounted on two metal beam-pipes extending from the center section and passing in front into the fairings of 4-mm caliber guns APK-76. It was designed for recoilless guns developed by a team led by L.V. Kurchevsky. In June 1934, all work on the ANT-23 was discontinued.
    1. svp67
      svp67 2 October 2015 16: 29 New
      Quote: parusnik
      in the Soviet Union, Tupolev proposed the option of a twin-engine fighter Mi-3 (ANT-21)

      In addition, they were tested in the USSR, but for various reasons they did not go into the series:
      TIS (A) - with engines AM-37 for 1400 hp at an altitude of 6300 m, released in 1941. Unlike other planes of a similar layout (VIT, SPB, Pe-2, Tu-2), its size and wing area are much smaller (34,85 m), and the engines are larger and heavier: the wing's specific load is one and a half times greater. The entire all-metal construction was well thought out technologically.
      The armament was extremely powerful: a bow rifle battery of four ShKAS (3000 rounds), in the center section - two ShVAK-20 (1600 rounds), one ShKAS back-up and one ShKAS back-up (750 rounds). The mass of a second volley is 5,12 kg. Bombs - two of 500 kg on the outside.
      The aircraft was launched in the spring of 1941 before the war, at that time it was a new type based on the experience of the WIT and St. Petersburg. The first flight was only in September, then evacuation followed., Where tests were carried out, which lasted until 1943. Flight performance was good: speed at the ground 490 km / h, at an altitude of 1500 m 515 km / h, climb time 7000 m 11,5 minutes. But it was too late, the question of the series did not arise.
      TIS (MA) - a heavy escort fighter, designed to deal with high-speed bombers, but not a dive bomber. It was supposed to install engines AM-39, but, due to their absence, AM-38s were installed. The dimensions and shapes of the aircraft were the same as the TIS (A), but the radiators were placed in the wing console with input and output tunnels.
      The armament was still strengthened: in the nose of the fuselage - two BS machine guns, in the center section - two 37 mm caliber guns at the sides of the fuselage (even tried 45 mm caliber) and one ShKAS machine gun up and down. Bombs - two of 500 kg on the outside.
      The first flight was June 13, 1944. Flight performance was just as good.

      AND MIG-5 DIS
      For this kind of fighter developed a special weapon system. With ammunition from the 200 300 shells easy to type on lёgkosёmnom carriage placed a 23-millimeter gun MP-6. It is placed in the nose of the fuselage. Two copies of a large-caliber machine gun BS 12,7 mm ammunition from the 300 600 rounds to four light machine guns caliber ShKAS 7,62 mm ammunition rounds to 1500.

      Initially, engineers planned to install a gun-23 load cells, but experts from the Air Force and prototyping Commission decided that the MP-6 will be more effective.

      Read more at:
      1. Alexey RA
        Alexey RA 2 October 2015 17: 23 New
        Quote: svp67
        In addition, they were tested in the USSR, but for various reasons they did not go into the series:

        The reason, in fact, is one: where the engine?!
        All of these heavy fighters were designed for promising engines with which they showed acceptable performance characteristics. But these motors did not go into the series. And with serial engines (M-105P, AM-35, AM-38) they turned into sedentary ducks.
        Plus, Taubin podkuzmil, disrupting all the terms of the MP-6 and generally calling into question the possibility of getting a new gun of 23 mm caliber.
  4. Dragon-y
    Dragon-y 2 October 2015 08: 39 New
    Exupery flew on an airplane with the weapons removed - it was not set up for scouts and "postal" ones.
  5. Free wind
    Free wind 2 October 2015 08: 56 New
    It is interesting that with guns for aircraft, the Americans were in the pope. 20 millimeter cannons turned out to be a disaster for them, they nailed them with French-Spanish spanish swords and at the beginning of the war almost all American planes were armed with machine guns. With 20mm guns, the British subsequently helped them. Well, with paper, before take-off, in many aircraft the arms (ports?) Were closed.
    1. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA 2 October 2015 12: 30 New
      Quote: Free Wind
      It is interesting that with guns for aircraft, the Americans were in the pope. 20 millimeter cannons turned out to be a disaster for them, they nailed them with French-Spanish spanish swords and at the beginning of the war almost all American planes were armed with machine guns.

      The biggest joke is that while the Air Force tried in vain to get a working copy of the 20 mm Hispano-Suiza HS.404 from the industry, the fleet received huge quantities of the 20 mm Erlikons from the same industry.
  6. lexa-xa
    lexa-xa 2 October 2015 09: 03 New
    Nevertheless, our Yaks also “landed” them, and the bill is in our favor.
  7. da Vinci
    da Vinci 2 October 2015 09: 20 New
    American films about the USSR often show how sickle-red hammers hang across the wall. From the photo from the assembly shop, where 2 American flags are hanging from the ceiling, I realized where this American cliche came from, which many young people take seriously using a scornful “scoop” .. The best history teacher, at least recent, has photos, especially those made simple by people. The more simple unbiased information, the more objective truth. IMHO. The article itself - 5 points. hi
  8. Efimov
    Efimov 2 October 2015 10: 39 New
    Beautiful and unusual plane fellow
  9. motorized rifle
    motorized rifle 2 October 2015 13: 29 New
    One interesting point, the engines of the R-38 rotated in different directions (why it is written in the article), respectively, the reactive and gyroscopic moments of the screws were compensated. American pilots used this as follows: in the case of an enemy appearing at six (behind), they switched to the right, steep, ascending spiral. The spiral was carried out with a limiting pitch angle, respectively, at full engine power and a speed of less than 200 km / h. The enemy, who was trying to follow, also gave full throttle and, accordingly, moved at the same extreme pitch angles and low speeds. But since in a single-engine aircraft, reactive torque compensation is performed by the rudder (LV) (pre-installation of the LV at an angle and direct deviation by the required amount), and the effectiveness of the LV depends on speed, therefore, when the speed drops, German fighters simply “turned” to the left with the threat of a breakdown in a corkscrew. After which the American gave the right pedal and reduced the speed of the right engine, his plane made a turn on the enemy with a very small radius and it was possible to go on the attack. In a dive, the R-38 would catch up with any enemy aircraft, but catching up with this was not all, in order to hit the enemy, you had to turn it on, take it into sight and hold it while firing. And at high speeds, the rudders begin to “clamp” the high-speed flow, which pilots had to deal with manually at that time, by the way, in these modes Spitfire lost to Focke-Wulf, at Spit, the ailerons were controlled not by deflecting the entire handle, but only its upper part and his pilot simply lacked the physical strength to deflect the ailerons due to small leverage than the Fock pilots, who had excellent roll control at all speeds and used to get out of attack. So the pilot of the R-38 controlling the roll with the help of a small-arm helm was assisted by a booster (hydraulic booster), therefore the effectiveness of the ailerons, especially at high speeds, was better for the R-38 than for single-engine fighters.
    Explanations: The rotational torque of the screw, the moment that occurs when the wine rotates, is directed in the opposite direction to the rotation, on single-engine aircraft it is compensated by the Directional Steering Wheel. In helicopters with a special tail rotor, with a coaxial scheme, the second rotor.
    The main part of the engines used in the Luftwaffe is the right rotation engines (when viewed from the cab).
    Moments arising on the steering surfaces are proportional to the square of the speed, i.e. if at a speed of 300 km \ h you need to apply a force of 30 kgf to deflect the steering wheel, then at a speed of 600 km \ h the required force will be 120 kgf, and at a speed of 1200 km / h - 480 kgf (conventional numbers).
    1. Orang
      Orang 2 October 2015 16: 05 New
      Thank you, very interesting information.
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA 2 October 2015 16: 55 New
      Quote: motorized infantryman
      One interesting point, the engines of the R-38 rotated in different directions (why it is written in the article), respectively, the reactive and gyroscopic moments of the screws were compensated. American pilots used this as follows: in the case of an enemy appearing at six (behind), they switched to the right, steep, ascending spiral. The spiral was carried out with a limiting pitch angle, respectively, at full engine power and a speed of less than 200 km / h. The enemy, who was trying to follow, also gave full throttle and, accordingly, moved at the same extreme pitch angles and low speeds. But since in a single-engine aircraft, reactive torque compensation is performed by the rudder (LV) (pre-installation of the LV at an angle and direct deviation by the required amount), and the effectiveness of the LV depends on speed, therefore, when the speed drops, German fighters simply “turned” to the left with the threat of a breakdown in a corkscrew.

      The "asymmetry" of the turns of single-engine fighters is an insidious thing. Pomnitsa, the Yankees, according to the results of the tests of the “Aleutian” Zero ”in the chapter“ Flight Performance ”, in a separate paragraph highlighted that:
      The Zero pivot speed from right to left is much higher than from left to right.

      Result - the pilots began to use it:
      I recalled that we were told at a briefing on the results of the tests of “Zero” Kogi about how to get away from the pursuing “Zero”. With the “Zero” on the tail, I began to do the reverse immelman [split S], with my nose down and at full throttle, my “Corsair” began to quickly gain speed. I needed a minimum of 240, and preferably 260 knots [445 km / h and 480 km / h]. Then, as we were taught, I made a steep right turn. As soon as I did this and continued to dive, the tracers of the pursuing Zero whistled under my fuselage. From the information received thanks to the “Zero” Kogi, I knew that in the right turn “Zero” is slower than in the left one. If I did not know this, I could turn to the left. In this case, “Zero” would most likely stay on my tail, take it in the sight and make me. I used this technique several times to break away from Zero
      (c) Kenneth A. Walsh
      Source: "Midway Myths: Aleutian Zero. Part IV."
    4. Falcon5555
      Falcon5555 2 October 2015 22: 33 New
      Quote: motorized infantryman

      therefore, with a drop in speed, German fighters simply “turned” to the left with the threat of breaking into a tailspin.

      I think that even the gyroscopic force arising from the rotation of the axis of rotation and acting on it in the perpendicular direction should have pulled Messerschmit down with the right turn, which should have been compensated by the controls, but they probably weren’t enough.
    5. Argon
      Argon 3 October 2015 06: 50 New
      As these "nerd simulators" already got such nonsense with a competent look. A motorized shooter is only a book, a source of knowledge, a computer is only a means of obtaining information, but it still needs to be "allocated-weed out" from that stream of "spam" that flows over the Internet. If you in the “Tundra,” something has been achieved there; you should not think that you can draw any conclusions about the controllability of real aircraft. Because from the “tundra” the simulator is from r ... on-bullet. For general development, see the landing speeds of twin-engine machines like this the same mass as the “lightning.” Normal, maximum. Bear in mind that the landing speed is the one at which the plane no longer flies but is still being controlled. I understand this is troublesome, but strain so as not to be dishonored in the future.
    6. rubin6286
      rubin6286 3 October 2015 13: 51 New
      The planes of the Second World War had mostly cable (i.e. tough) control. If we neglect the actions of the pilot’s left hand controlling the gas sector, then the aircraft was controlled:

      1. By pitch (roll): by moving the helm (handle) “towards you” - “up” or “from yourself” - “down”. At the same time, the aircraft was either cabrioled or dived. Efforts from the control handle are transferred to the elevator, which either lowers downward, increasing the tail lift (when cabling), or reducing it (when diving).
      2. On the course (yaw): using the foot pedals. By pressing or moving the left (right) pedal, you can rotate the plane in horizontal flight to the left (right). Efforts from the pedals are transmitted to the steering wheel (direction).
      3. By rotation: using ailerons. Turning the helm (deflecting controls) to the right (left), the pilot turns the plane to the right (left). Efforts from the control stick are transferred to the ailerons, one of which rises and the other falls, thereby changing the lifting force.

      The right (left) steep ascending spiral with a maximum pitch angle is immelman. When moving the machine from an inverted position to the “horizon”, it seems to “freeze”, because the speed of 200 km / h is relatively low. The enemy, trying to follow in order to guarantee the target’s defeat, should not repeat the P-38 actions, as you write, but rather perform a maneuver so as to be slightly higher (or) lower than the enemy, without losing speed at the same time - to perform an oblique loop (better ascending, than descending). At the same time, an attack must be exited by performing an energetic combat turn (left or right) to be not lower, but higher than the enemy (that’s why “the master of heights is the master of the battle”). Nobody canceled the golden rule of mechanics and here you are right - how many times we win in strength, so many times we lose in the distance. The longer the lever, the less effort is required. The use of boosters at Lightning has reduced the load on the governing body, which has reduced the turn radius and facilitate the withdrawal from the dive. This facilitated the attack of ground targets and could give an advantage in the battle on turns, but, trouble, the enemy’s single-engine fighters (ours, Germans, Japanese), having great thrust-weight ratio and rate of climb, preferred vertical approach to the battle on turns.
      I don’t remember something, while piloting the Yak-18, when trying to complete the “combat turn” figure at a speed of about 250 km / h, it would have difficulty in the efforts on the control stick (there wasn’t 25 kg there).

      For requirements common to all parts of an airplane, there are also specific requirements for controlling an aircraft with a piston engine, one of which is the condition that a certain relationship be observed between the forces applied simultaneously to the handle in the longitudinal and transverse directions. as well as to the pedals:

      Rv.v. / Re = 2, where Rv.v. - longitudinal force from the elevator;
      Re - lateral force from ailerons.

      R.p./Re = 5-8, where R.p. - longitudinal force from the pedals;
      Re - lateral force from ailerons.

      Why, then, in the battle with Lightning, it was as you describe. It seems to me that in the battles at the Pacific theater of operations, due to large losses of personnel, the level of combat training of Japanese pilots was significantly reduced. Young, inexperienced pilots had no experience in conducting air battles and often died, if not in the first, then in the second sortie. In Europe, everything was different, although there experienced German pilots became less and less.
    7. yehat
      yehat 28 June 2016 11: 48 New
      In a dive, the R-38 caught up with any enemy aircraft

      For example, Italians had a MC 205 with an engine from Messer, which even surpassed p38 in dive speed.
  10. motorized rifle
    motorized rifle 3 October 2015 11: 59 New
    In vain you are so: "simulated", infa just from the recollection of the Amerov pilot, the devil read when, otherwise he would have brought a link. "Books source" - here I agree 100%. Book V.S. Pyshnova "From the history of aircraft" in childhood was one of my favorites. A book by V.N. Mednikov's "Maneuvering in a Fighter Aircraft", was bought and read to holes back in the 90s, when no one dreamed about simulators. Speaking of simulators, I don’t know how in the Tundra, I haven’t tried it, but in Il-2, this maneuver doesn’t work, because the fly-models of the Messers and Fock are registered with the minimum reactive moment of the screw, so that they simply get Light on the spiral described above. About speed, I did not understand what you wanted to say, for the R-38, the stall speed was 170km / h with a weight of more than 9t. So what? You do not worry about me, I know the theory, "although it is troublesome." Sincerely, dear S.V.
  11. moskowit
    moskowit 3 October 2015 18: 07 New
    Thanks to everyone. I learned much more from the comment of respected commentators than from the article. "Nice damn it."
  12. Zaurbek
    Zaurbek 3 October 2015 23: 15 New
    Americans always made good planes. And as engineers came up with the concept. High level engineering culture and all supplies were available.
  13. Kir1984
    Kir1984 5 October 2015 14: 02 New
    this is my favorite allied apparatus in il-2