Boris Yuryev was one of the pioneers of helicopter. Despite the fact that his name is not carried on any helicopter, he developed the theoretical basis and practical solutions that prepared the basis for domestic helicopters. At the initiative of Yuryev, in 1926 a helicopter group was organized in TsAGI. It developed a helicopter under the scheme. Proposed Yuriev. The scientists began research, as a result of which were elected to three of the most promising schemes: a single-rotor helicopter with tail rotor. As a result, the world's first such experimental helicopter was built to determine the characteristics of the rotor near the ground. This was the helicopter TsAGI 1-EA.
In 1930 the Section at TsAGI headed at the time by AM Cheremuhin, was commissioned to build the first Soviet helicopter. It must be said that this work was a state secret, and the students of the Academy, did not even know about this work, although both the creator of the helicopter - Yuriev and Cheremuhin - engaged with them. The world altitude record for a helicopter at that time was 18 meters. Therefore, the flights of the aircraft were held on a leash (in chains). The Soviet helicopter climbed to 3 - 4 meters and was unstable.
Nevertheless, on 14 August 1932 AM Cheremuhin climbed on it and reached a height of 605 meters. In the descent to the ground, something happened, and only the greatest self-control and good fortune saved the inventor from death. The flight, which had been prepared for three years, lasted 12 minutes. In this flight the world altitude record for helicopters was exceeded by 33.5 times. Subsequently, AM Cheremuhin returned to work on the creation of wind tunnels, and the last years of his life he was active in the OKB Tupolev.
All attempts to create a practical helicopter until the mid-1940s were unsuccessful. The helicopter proved to be much more science-intensive, the creation of these machines was only possible for experienced design teams. The 1920s and 1930s were a period of experiments in helicopter construction. In connection with the long period of experiments and searches, the autogyro (from the Greek "autos" - "self" and "gyros" - "circle, rotation") became the dominant type of rotorcraft in those years. The carrying screw of the gyroplane did not have a mechanical drive from the engine, but rotated in flight by itself under the influence of an oncoming airflow.
The first rotorcraft, autogyros A-4 designed by Vyacheslav Kuznetsov, entered the Red Army aviation in 1934.
I.P.Bratukhin was a rotary-wing engineer whose work dates back to 1925. During the 1930s, he developed the single-rotor configuration using various means for counteracting rotor torque. Before the start of the Great Patriotic War, the design bureau of the Moscow Aviation Institute under the direction of P. Bratukhin designed and constructed twin-screw autogyro "Omega". In 1941, the Omega I was flown. This was a two-place craft with lateral rotors mounted on outriggers. Two engines were also located outboard. These powerplants were M-11 radials, rated at about 140 hp.
This Omega I craft was reported in production. However, it appears it was never a successful design. He then designed in built autogyros "Omega-11" T-3 and T-4. The T-3 T-4 were transferred into production and produced in small batches. At the same time with the creation and study of autogyros, Kuznetsov, Skrzhinskiy, Kamov and Mil TsAGI were designing and constructing winged and wingless gyros, some of them were pretty high flight data. In particular, the gyro TsAGI A-12 in the tests developed a speed of horizontal flight up to 245 km / h and up to a height of 5570 m.
At the beginning of the Great Patriotic War squadron of military gyroplanes A-7-3a was established (the first production rotorcraft in the USSR) Nikolay Kamov design that was used in the Smolensk defensive battle. The engineer of this squadron was Mikhail Mil.
By the mid-1940s, there were prerequisites for the transition from experimental helicopters to helicopters for special purposes. The greatest success in those years was achieved by the design bureau of Ivan Bratukhin. In 1947, in Serpukhov, the first helicopter squadron was formed in the Air Force, equipped with multipurpose G-3 helicopters (the "Artillery Fire Corrector") for its development.
Unfortunately, helicopters of a two-screw transverse scheme were characterized by increased vibrations, the reason of which is the installation of the rotor screws on an elastic base. KB Bratukhin could not solve this problem, the aircraft were removed from service, and his OKB-4 design bureau was disbanded. The evolution of helicopters in the USSR returned to the classical scheme with one carrier and one steering screw. It is this scheme of the helicopter that currently dominates the world in helicopter construction.
Apart from a few autogyros and experimental helicopters, no rotary-wing aircraft entered production in the Soviet Union until the post-war years. In 1948, the Omega II appeared. The same rotor arrangement was used, but the craft was larger and aerodynamically cleaner than the first ver- sion. The Omega II car- ried a crew of two and six passengers. Two ASH- 21, 7-cylinder radial en- gines were used having a KAMOV Helicopter take-off rating of 750 hp. At least one was built, and it appears development was dropped.
As early as 1945, Mil, on his own initiative, was developing the experimental helicopter EG-1. It was a three-seater helicopter project of a classical single-screw scheme. The light multipurpose Mi-1 helicopter (the NATO codification Hare, with the English hare) was developed in the late 1940s in the Soyuznoye OKB-4 Minaviaproma (now the Moscow Helicopter Plant named after ML Mil), is a member of the holding company "Russian Helicopters") under the direction of the aircraft designer Mikhail Mil.
Then on December 12, 1947, the first helicopter design bureau was founded under the leadership of M. L. Mil. It was here that the first helicopter, the Mi-1 Hare, was designed. Less than a year later in October 1948, it is said to have made its maiden flight and three years later was shown to the world in the 1951 Tushino Air Show.
By the mid- to late-1950s, two different Mi-1 helicopter designs were operational in Frontal Aviation units. The small, lightly armed Mi-i Hare has now been largely forgotten; but despite its technological limitations it performed well as a small liaison craft for nearly a decade. The advent of turbine engines in American and French helicopters led to the demand for new designs incorporating this new technology.
The first flight of the turbine-engined Mi-2 Hoplite took place in Poland on August 26, 1965. While it would be unwise to be too critical of the Soviet practice of making proven equipment serve new purposes by "strapping on" new technology, the idea of the Hoplite serving as an attack helicopter seemed quite unlikely. It is more reasonable to assume that it would be used to transport squad-sized subunits at low altitude over surface obstacles, including nuclear contaminated zones. Polish marine infantry units, in fact, demonstrated the utility of the Mi-2 in landing airborne units on a coast in connection with amphibious maneuvers.
With each of the five ground armies in the Group of Soviet Forces in East Germany (GSFG) being supported by a regiment of Mi-2 Hoplites, one could postulate the existence of approximately 150 helicopters each capable of transporting eight-ten GSFG infrantrymen. At least theoretically, that was enough tactical airlift support for between 1,000 and 1,500 soldiers armed only with automatic rifles and light machine guns. Configured as a medical evacuation helicopter, the Mi-2 can carry four wounded on stretchers, one medical corpsman and equipment.
The first of the medium-sized helicopters to enter service with Frontal Aviation was the Mi-4 Hound. The second of the new turbine-powered helicopter to appear in Frontal Aviation was another Mil product, the Mi-8 Hip C. Designed as a replacement for the weary Hound, the Hip quickly proliferated throughout the military during the 1960s and also entered Aeroflot service in great numbers. Capable of transporting at least three rifle squads, it provides considerable tactical airlift capability. Twenty of these helicopters could, for example, transport an airborne battalion of approximately 550 men with light arms. Equipped with large rear clamshell doors, the Hip is said to be also able to transport small vehicles of approximately BRDM (BTR-40) or Uaz-69 bulk.
An East German milltary author points to the fact that the Mi-8 was proof that all capable general purpose helicopters can be armed. Automatic grenade launchers (up to 40mm) and a 12.7mm machine-gun with a range of 1,000-3,000 m for use against moving targets reclaimed for the Hip. In an air assault role, however, the Hip would undoubtedly be equipped with four standard 16- or 32-shot 57mm unguided rocket pods. Our East German author even points to the possibility of unguided rockets or guided missiles on side-mounted out-riggers which are intended for use in an anti-tank role. Moreover, each window in the Hip's transport section is also equipped with a device which the infantryman can use to support his weapon to fire at ground targets from the air. Apart from its obvious ability to support assault operations, its practical size and fine performance make the MI-8 an outstanding utility helicopter which found increasing utilization throughout the military forces of the Warsaw Pact.
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