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Air Assault Transport Aircraft
Desantno Transportnyiy Samolet

In the 1950s, a great interest in special military transport aircraft (MTS) began to appear in the world aircraft industry. In many respects this was due to the fact that the military doctrines of the leading powers provided for the use of nuclear weapons, and for the immediate consolidation of the results of its influence it was considered necessary to use airborne assault forces. In addition, the theory of "vertical coverage" was further developed, the main component of which were mobile groups of fronts with airborne landing of troops and combat equipment.

A strong leadership in the creation and production of transport aircraft took the US. In the asset overseas aircraft manufacturers were such cars as the C-47 Skytrain and the C-46 Commando - replicated in thousands of copies, they still in the 1940s became a "classic of the genre." In the States, the first special VTS C-82 Packet, the C-119 Flying Boxcar and the C-123 Provider were serially produced. Lockheed was developing a new generation of transport - the future famous C-130 Hercules.

In the early 1950s, Soviet military transport aviation did not have a plane that met modern requirements. The most perfect domestic military-technical cooperation was Il-12D, created on the basis of the passenger Il-12. At that time, a special C-119 transport aircraft was massively used in the USA, the serial production of the classic C-123 military-technical aircraft began, and Lockheed was developing a new generation of the C-130 turboprop.

In the Soviet Union in those years there were several projects of specialized transport aircraft. In the USSR, there were were drawings, there was a description for several projects, they remained on paper. Design Bureau R.Bartini in 1944-48. worked on piston-type military vehicles T-108 and T-117, as well as T-200 with combined power plant. However, the implementation of these projects was difficult, because by that time, Bartini's KB had been shut down.

The lag of the USSR in this area was significant. The recently created Military Transport Aviation (VTA) was equipped with the obsolete Li-2, which had been created relatively recently, but did not already meet the modern requirements of the Il-12 and Il-14, as well as the variant of the long-range bomber Tu- 4. The Soviet aviation industry still did not issue special MTS. And now for the development of a much-needed airplane for the country, a young OKB led by OK Antonov took up, the achievements of which were limited to the light multi-purpose An-2. The lack of domestic experience in creating special military technical cooperation and limited access to foreign sources of information meant that starting a solution to the colossal problem will have to start from scratch.

This sounded like a challenge to the largest Western corporations, as well as the venerable domestic OKB A.N.Tupolev, S.V.Ilyushin and A.S.Yakovleva. For the first time OKB-153 (at that time officially called OKB Antonova) turned to the subject of military-technical cooperation in July 1948, preparing a preliminary design of the machine, which was a high-lift with two engines Ash-62IR, made on the basis of the Antonov transport glider A-7.

In OKB-153 under the guidance of OK Antonov in December 1951, a preliminary design of the DT-5/8 airborne transport aircraft with two theater engines was prepared. The machine had a maximum load capacity of 8 tons, was equipped with a high-pass chassis and a large tailgate allowing landing and airborne landing of troops and equipment. Linking great hopes to this project, Antonov took an active part in "pushing" the work to create a turboprop engine of the appropriate dimension.

On 17 April 1953, Minister of Defense Industry of the USSR DF Ustinov, based on the materials of TsAGI containing information on the assembly of the experimental C-130, wrote: "Comrade Khrunichev. Please talk." This served as an impetus to the creation of a national specialized military-technical cooperation with theater.

The flight performance, stated in the draft DT-5/8, generally corresponded to the needs of VTA. On 11 December 1953 the Council of Ministers of the USSR issued decree #2922-1251 on the creation of Antonov Design Bureau (renamed after relocation to Kiev Aviation Plant #473 in GSOKB-473) issued a theater transport plane with two engines. On 23 December 1953 MAP issued an appropriate order. These documents also instructed OKB Ivchenko to finalize the TV-2 engine for installation on this aircraft.

The An-8, the direct predecessor of the An-12, was developed in accordance with the Resolution of the Council of Ministers of 1953 for the creation of a twin-engine transport aircraft loaded from the tail.

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