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La-7

Later developments by the Lavochkin OKB included the La-7, which went into series production in the second half of 1944, some 5,733 being built in the last year of the war. It had a maximum speed of well over 400 miles per hour and was designed to intercept the German FW-190A-8. Lavochkin continued painstaking and careful work to improve his brainchild, achieving an additional reduction in aerodynamic drag and weight reduction by replacing the wooden wing spars with lighter metal ones. Therefore, the new La-7 serial fighter, with the same M-82FN engine, developed a maximum speed of 652 km / h at an altitude of 6100 m, and gained 5000 m in 5.0 minutes - most aviation historians consider it the best in its class for combat on small and medium altitudes.

This brought Semyon Alekseevich deserved recognition as a talented designer. At the same time, he remained an extremely modest person, an intellectual who never raised his voices to his subordinates, who put on his general's uniform only on special occasions or for photography.

One of the best Soviet fighters, which went into service one year before the end of the war, the La-7 was a development of the LaGG-3. All the advantages of the "ancestor" boiled down to two factors - high survivability and maximum use in the design of wood instead of metal, which was in short supply. However, a weak motor and heavy weight made the LaGG-3 an unimportant opponent of the all-metal Messerschmitt Bf.109. From LaGG-3 in OKB-21 Lavochkin made La-5, putting a new engine, AS-82 and refined aerodynamics. Modification of La-5FN with the supercharged engine produced an excellent combat vehicle, exceeding by a number of parameters Bf.109. In La-7 the weight was again lowered, and also the armament was strengthened. The plane became very good, even though remaining wooden.

In September 1944, the best Soviet fighter of WWII, the La-7, was given for combat trials to the 63rd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment, which fought for the liberation of Riga. The new aircraft became a true bugbear for the Germans. During a month of air battles, the Regiments La-7s destroyed 55 enemy fighters, losing only 4 aircraft.

The La-7 looked similar to the La-5FN, but due to the advanced technical innards, it surpassed its predecessor in terms of speed, rate of climb and ceiling. What's more important, the La-7 surpassed almost all German aircraft of the day.

Often Luftwaffe pilots preferred to avoid combat with these powerful Soviet aircraft, so the German command used to send only their best of the best against the La-7 regiments. For instance, the elite German wing Jagdgeschwader 54 (JG 54), to which such top shots as Otto Kittel (267 aerial victories) and Walter Nowotny (258) belonged, was often redeployed to frontline zones where the Soviet La-7 served.

The first Soviet jet kill was also claimed by the La-7. In February 1945, Soviet ace Ivan Kozhedub shot down a German Me-262 jet fighter-bomber in an air battle over the Oder River.

Prototype "120R" with a liquid-jet accelerator

The pilot version of the fighter La-7 with a liquid-jet accelerator 1KhZ RD (1945). In 1945, the OKB Lavochkin continued work on equipping a liquid-piston fighter jet accelerators. Faster than the La-7, and therefore preferable to set the rocket engine fighter plane was "120". It was built fighter modification of the "120" with a modified RD-1KhZ (chemical ignition) design Glushko.

Before installing the RD-Plane 1KhZ, the aircraft had to be recomposed thoroughly and completely replace the rear fuselage. Tests "120R" and La-7R held in parallel. Also finishing with expander had to refine fuel and oil system of a fighter. The plane passed factory tests from July 1945 to August 1946. (test pilot A. Davydov). With running LRE it was obtained gains speed of 103 km / h.

The culmination was the flight "120R" at the air show in Tushino in 1946 . Insecurity of the LRE, great difficulties with the operation and the lack of prospects for overcoming them led to the fact that further work on the installation of liquid-jet accelerators fighters was discontinued.

La-7R

La-7R was the first Soviet fighter with a liquid-jet engine (LRE). Installation work on the rocket engine fighter began under the leadership of SM Alekseev in the branch of OKB Lavochkin (plant number 81), organized by the spring of 1944 in the Moscow mass plant ? 381. In October 1944, the plant number 81 built the first La-7R-1. It was the tail of the RD-1 design VPGlushko with pumping system components supply driven by the main motor AL-82FN. Fuel for the RD-1 served as kerosene and nitric acid.

Two prototypes were built and factory tested from 27 October 1944 until February 24, 1945 Test pilots GM Shiyanov and AV Davydov. With operating the accelerator it was obtained by an increase speed of 90-100 km / h, but the unreliability of LRE and great difficulties with the operation required for further development work. The La 7 fighting machine made of wood failed. Modified rocket engine was installed on the experimental plane "120".

La-7 D-10 Fighter (1945)

Another type of jet engines, which were installed on piston aircraft Lavochkin were Pulsejet PuVRD D-10, developed in the factory number 51 under the leadership of Chelomei. In November, 1945. Installation work on the La-7 two engines D-10 (a thrust of 200 kg each) have been completed, and in the late summer of 1946. This machine has passed flight tests. Airspeed La 7 PuVRD by working at a height of 3000 m has increased by 119 km / h and at an altitude of 800m flight increased to 193 km / h.

To further test the full use accelerators were encouraged to use all-metal La-9. At the same time D-10 engines installed on three planes La-7 UTI, intended to participate in the air parade in 1947 Aircraft tested, but did not participate in the parade, as with modified D-13 engines equipped aircraft La-9, which were demonstrated at the parade in Tushino August 30, 1947

La-7 D-10 Piloted Fighter (1944-45)

The La-7R was the first Soviet fighter with a liquid-jet engine (LRE). Installation work on the rocket engine fighter began under the leadership of SM Alekseev in the branch of OKB Lavochkin (plant number 81), organized by the spring of 1944 in the Moscow mass plant #381. In October 1944, the plant number 81 built the first La-7R-1. It was the tail of the RD-1 design VPGlushko with pumping system components supply driven by the main motor AL-82FN. Fuel for the RD-1 served as kerosene and nitric acid.

There were two prototypes built, factory tested from 27 October 1944. until February 24, 1945 Test pilots GM Shiyanov and AV Davydov. With operating the accelerator it was obtained by an increase speed of 90-100 km / h, but the unreliability of LRE and great difficulties with the operation required for further development work. The wooden La-7 fighting machine with expander failed. Modified rocket engine was installed on the experimental plane "120".




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