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Glossary USSR Polikarpov I-5 R-5 Po-2 I-15 I-15bis I-153 I-16 I-16 type 5 I-16 type 10 I-17 I-180 I-185 I-190 VIT-2 TIS-A (MA) NB (T) Photos & Drawings

I-15

Fighter

Polikarpov

I-15

I-15 one of the best in world practice of aircraft construction of samples of a fighter - biplane - has been developed in 1933 in Polikarpov design bureau. Under the scheme and design I-15 represented the further development of fighter I-5, but had more perfect aerodynamics and much more high-power motor of air cooling M-25 (license reproduction American Right "Cyclone" F-3). Prominent feature I-15 consist in the peculiar form of the upper wing having the scheme "seagull" that promoted aerodynamic-drag reduction and gave the best forward view upwards.

Flight tests I-15 have begun in December, 1933. The fighter on all performances has surpassed I-5. In 1934 I-15 has been mass-produced. Steady, manageable, with high flight performances, an exclusive manoeuvrability and excellent take-off and landing characteristics, this fighter used the deserved love of pilots.
I-15 began one of the first domestic warplanes on whom the Soviet pilots - volunteers have entered struggle against fascists. It has taken place in the autumn of 1938 in Spain, and one year later in China, our pilots on this fighter have met in fight the Japanese aggressors. Air war in the sky of Spain has shown full superiority I-15 over the main and best fighters of Germany - Heinkel He - 51-A-1 and Italian Fiat CR.32. On flight performances I-15 surpassed Japanese fighter - biplane Ki.10.

Due to high fighting qualities I-15 has got reputation of the strongest manoeuvrable fighter. It is paradoxical, the recognition to I-15 has come already after ending of it production. In total were built 384 airplanes I-15 (1934-1936).

1933-1939 Fighters
DI-6 I-15 I-15 bis I-153 Chaika I-16 type 5 I-16 type 24
Crew 2 1 1 1 1 1
Year of issue 1937 1934 1937 1939 1936 1940
Dimensions
Length, m 7.0 6.1 6.27 6.17 6.07 6.13
Wing span, m 10.0 9.75 10.2 10.0 9.0 9.0
Wing area, m² 25.2 23.55 22.5 22.14 14.54 14.54
Weight, kg:
Loaded weight 2038 1390 1700 1765 1590 1882
Powerplant
Engine М-25V М-25 М-25V М-62 М-25А М-63
Power, hp 775 640 775 1000 715 1100
Performance
Maximum speed, km/h at sea level 334 315 327 364 390 415
at altitude 382 367 379 424 445 470
m 3000 3000 3500 5000 2700 4800
Time to 5000 m, min 9.2 6.2 6.6 5.7 7.4 5.8
Time of turn, sec 11-12 9.0 10.5 13-13.5 14-15 17-18
Service ceiling, m 8300 9800 9300 10700 9100 9900
Service range, km - 550 520 560 540 440
Armament
Machine guns 3 2 4 4 2 4

References

  • "The history of designs of planes in USSR 1938-1950" /Vadim Shavrov/
  • "Planes of Stalin falcons" /Konstantin Kosminkov and Dmitriy Grinyuk/
  • "The Soviet planes" /Alexander Yakovlev/

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