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Lavochkin La-250 Anakonda

Since the American adversary had large numbers of strategic bombers capable of delivering nuclear weapons (including stand-off air-to-surface missiles), Soviet leaders urged the priority development of long range, high altitude and high speed air defence systems. Nikita Sergeyevich Khruschchev maintained a very close interest in SAM systems. Thus, the S-75 Tunguska' (ASCC SA-2 'Guideline') missile system was developed and fielded in the late 1950s after successfully completing the trials program. It was this missile which shot down Gary Powers' U-2.

Meanwhile, the aircraft designers kept on searching for new ideas. By the early 1960s they succeeded in creating a new class of fighter aircraft - the so-called heavy interceptors. These aircraft the customary gun armament and were not designed for dogfighting. Instead, they were to destroy enemy strategic bombers a long way off from state borders with mediumto-long range air-to-air missiles (AAMs).

The first major effort in this direction came from the design bureau led by Semyon Alekseyevich Lavochkin with the La-250 heavy interceptor (dubbed 'Anaconda' by its pilots), a component of the La-250-15 weapon system.

In April 1953 S.A.Lavochkin and Chief Designer of NII-17 V.V.Tikhomirov came out with a proposal to create a fundamentally new automated system for intercepting aircraft with guided missiles. November 20, 1953 according to the decision of the government #2837-1200 began work on the K-15. The basic idea of the K-15 was a harmonious blend of tactical flight opportunities carrier missiles and avionics solutions to the problem of interception. The number "15" in the designation of the system means the range of powered flight of rockets.

The system included the "250" interceptor, "275" missiles and the K-15 radar. The K-15 system was designed to destroy guided missiles targets flying at altitudes of 20,000 meters and at a speed of 1200 km / h. EDO was to create not only the aircraft, which is unparalleled, and guided missiles.

For the first time in the USSR the "250" aircraft had developed a new aerodynamic design with a thin triangular wing and low-lying stabilizers, with the side air intakes and two supersonic motors located in the fuselage. The plane of such a scheme and a large take-off weight - about 28 tonnes - to be fitted with the new VC-9 turbojet design VY Klimov a thrust of 12,000 kg in afterburner. Interceptor armament consisted of 2"275" rockets, suspended under the fuselage, also developed in OKB Lavochkin.

The control system missile weaponry was used a new kind of single while the basic method for guidance along the line of the radar - the parallel rapprochement, or otherwise, the method "trehtochki" maneuver with the carrier. In this method the carrier to its active maneuver during the attack helped missile guidance to the target, which significantly simplify and facilitate the on-board equipment. Because of the brevity of the attacks and management of carrier rocket is no longer a pilot function, with the autopilot receiving control signals from the on-board computing devices.

Thus, the Lavochkin Design Bureau in the Soviet Union the first start of the creation of a real aircraft automated system of interception. Both "275" rockets were hung in the semi-flush position under the fuselage on each other. The pilot and the operator placed one after another in the cab skinned with common lamps are equipped with emergency drop mechanism. Both crew members had ejection seats. It was provided and icing device.

Although the La-250 was intended as a single-seater in operational form, prototypes were completed as two-seaters to provide accommodation for a test observer, and the first of three flying examples was completed in July 1956.

The first flight was attempted on 16 July 1956, but the test pilot, A G Kochetkov, encountered an unexpectedly rapid roll moment and lost control. On the first take-off on July 16, there was an accident, but the pilot remained almost unscathed. Immediately after the take off, the plane began a vigorous swinging of the wing on the wing, and because the chassis had already been removed, Kochetkov landed on its belly, damaging the wing, fuselage and landing gear.

It was found that the main reason it was the fact that the moment of inertia of the aircraft because of the small magnitude was several times the great length of the aircraft. Therefore, the motion of the roll developed in eight times faster than the movement of yaw on takeoff and it was difficult to extinguish in time arises roll and lateral sway. For the first time in the USSR was built an electronically simulation stand in the hangar, which brought the nose of the aircraft for a very long study of irreversible hydraulic control system. This revealed the phase shift between the movements of the knobs and controls in this system.

Extensive testing of a systems rig followed before acceptable characteristics were attained and flight testing could be resumed. The second aircraft was lost in a landing accident on 28 November 1957, and the third aircraft also suffered a landing accident on 8 September 1958.

However, due to delays in the development of the engine VC-9 had to modify the machine "250" under the engine AL-7F, with considerably less thrust, which led to the creation of a new aircraft, "250A."

K-15 - La-250 + G-300 missile

By mid-1950s, it became obvious that subsonic cannon-armed fighters like Yakovlev Yak-25 would be unable to intercept fast high-altitude targets like the upcoming generation of strategic jet bombers. As the result, in 1953 Lavochkin OKB proposed addition of an air-to-air missile system to the Berkut air-defense system. Tasked with defence of Moscow, the Berkut system consisted of a large network of radars and surface-to-air missile sites as well as ground-controlled interceptor aircraft.

Lavochkin's proposed missile G-300 utilized a guidance system based on vacuum tubes and was so heavy (about 1,000 kg (2,200 lb)) that no fighter in Soviet arsenal could carry it. Instead, a Tupolev Tu-4 bomber (Soviet version of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress) was modified to carry four G-300 under the wings, with the whole system receiving designation G-310. For all this trouble, G-300 was expected to have a range of only 15 km (9 mi) and a ceiling of 20,000 m (65,600 ft). Although G-310 made ten flights in 1952, the system was abandoned as impractical.

In November 1952, the Soviet government ordered development of Kompleks K-15 (Complex K-15, a notion analogous to USAF's "weapon system" concept). K-15 was to consist of an interceptor "250" (later designated La-250) carrying "275" guided missiles. La-250 had to be able to intercept targets flying at 1,250 km/h (777 mph, Mach 1.18) at 20,000 m (65,600 ft) and up to 500 km (310 mi) from the airbase. Initial guidance was to be from Vozdukh-1 ground control with terminal onboard radar guidance for the last 40 km (25 mi) and automatic missile firing by the fire control system when in range.

Missile "275" was projected to weigh 870 kg (1,915 lb) and, powered by a liquid fuel rocket motor, its top speed was to exceed 3,900 km/h (2,425 mph). With a 125 kg (275 lb) conventional warhead, it had a projected lethal radius of 50 m (165 ft). La-250 was to carry two "275" missiles semi-recessed into the underside of the fuselage in a tandem arrangement.

From Lavochkin to Babakin

The flight test program suffered continual delays as a result of poor engine reliability and the full testing had not been completed when the program was cancelled.

The third copy of the La-250 is located in the Museum of Air Force aircraft at the Air Force Academy in im.Gagarina g.Monino. This was the last plane designed by Lavochkin, which thereafter worked on spacecraft projects.

Design of the lunar and planetary spacecraft in the Lavochkin design bureau was headed by G.N Babakin, the main designer of the Lavochkin design bureau. The design team of the Lavochkin design bureau had extensive experience in the development of automatic aircraft, particularly intercontinental ballistic cruise missiles and unmanned airplanes. Few of these designers had any experience in the design of spacecraft. In June 1960, after Lavochkin died, to continue to be employed, the designers from the Lavochkin design bureau learned how to design spacecraft and combine this knowledge with the skills acquired in the design of unmanned aircraft.

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