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Ye-300 / MiG-9 / Fargo

The MiG-9 fighter was the first series-produced jet plane designed by Mikoyan's design office. It was a single-seater, all-metal midwing monoplane. The plan view of the wing was trapezoidal. Two RD-20 jet engines with a thrust of 800 kg each were situated side by side in the lower part of the fuselage. The tricycle landing gear with nose strut provided an excellent view from the cockpit and greatly facilitated aircraft control in take-off and landing. The MiG-9 had powerful armament: one 37-mm cannon and two 23-mm cannons. Its take-off weight was 5000 kg, maximum speed 900 kph. In service the MiG-9 received that USAF designation of Type 1, and the NATO reporting name Fargo

In the first post war decade, Soviet air defense was dominated by a concerted program to equip fighter forces with jet aircraft. A major commitment was made early in 1946 to focus on advanced jet engine development while using foreign technology to support intermediate aircraft development. The development of interim aircraft was based on captured German engines. This stage resulted in the YAK-15 and MiG-9 aircraft. These were produced in limited quantities-some 800 MiG-9's and 265 YAK-15's and 610 YAK-17's (an improved version of the YAK-15).

The jet engines in the USSR improved only at the very end of the war with the arrival of German turbojet trophies. As soon as they were launched into mass production in the Soviet Union. The use of trophy jet engines greatly helped to expedite the establishment of domestic jets. The plane developed a velocity 920 km/h and had a powerful artillery armament. During the testing of weapons on this plane was constructed several experimental modifications (Ye-302 ("OP"), Ye-307 ("FF") and 308 ("FR")). In addition, the aircraft engine was upgraded with installation of TS-1 Design Bureau of A.m. Cot (I-305 ("FL")) and "Nene-I" the English company "Rolls Royce" (I-320 ("PDR")).

In 1946, Ye-300 [Ye = Yezdeliye = model, also seen as I or E] was launched in mass production at plant No. 1. Stalin in Kuibyshev and entered service with the Air Force as the MiG-9. Total production came to 604 MiG-9. Based on the MiG-9 were also built two training modifications-I-301T (FT-1 "and" FT-2). On a plane "FT-2" for the first time in domestic practice was tested ejection seat pilot. On 24 April 1946 pilot M. Ivanov made the first flight in a Yak-15, and that same day pilot A. Grinchik made the first flight in a MiG-9.

In 1946, the first Soviet jet fighters had just been produced and appeared at the Tushino Air Show on 19 August, at which Stalin demonstrated his jets in the first post war Aviation Day flying display. Both aircraft were supposedly demonstrated at the Tushino show on August 19, although only the MiG-9 was reported by USAF intelligence. The day after the air show, Stalin sent instructions to the Ministry of the Aircraft Industry that 10 to 15 of these new jets-the MiG-9 and the YAK-15 - were to be ready for the October Revolution Parade less than three months away.

Despite the obvious enormity of the task, 15 MiGs and 15 YAKs were ready by 7 November 1946. In spite of all the effort, the entire aerial part of the November parade was weathered in - the scheduled fly-by was grounded because of bad weather. Muscovites saw the first Soviet jet planes flying over Red Square on 1 May 1947. By that time a large number of Yak-15 and MiG-9 planes had been series-produced, and flights of jet planes had become an ordinary event.

The MiG-9 was the more successful of the two aircraft owing mainly to the greater power available from the two-engine configuration and to its all-metal construction. Its 560-knot speed compared favorably with its contemporaries, the U.S. Shooting Star and the British Vampire. In the air the MiG-9 turned out to be unexpectedly simple to fly-its characteristics were modest and unassuming. One might even go so far as to term them agreeable. The term 'unexpectedly' may be used advisedly, as before the service introduction of jet aircraft, there was a certain fear among Soviet fighter pilots that these novelties would be difficult to handle in the air; it was widely believed that jets could be flown only by 'extra special' pilots and then only after protracted training. In the event, reality proved very different-the MiG-9 could be flown by the average fighter pilot. Indeed, it was easier to fly than its contemporary, the YAK-15.

The YAK-15 and MiG-9 were obsolete before they flew. In March or April 1946, before the first jet flights, an air force requirement was probably incorporated in the Aviation Ministry Plan brought before Stalin on April 2, 1946. According to an account attributed to Gurevich, the specifications envisioned "aircraft to climb rapidly to a height of ten kilometers [38,000 ft.] and to maneuver quickly at that altitude at a good speed and with a heavy cannon . . . . We were to provide for only one pilot and to stay aloft for one hour. Otherwise we were not restricted in our design besides the usual strength requirements and the need for close attention to metal working."

While on a mission to build a turbojet fighter, in OKB-155 was set to develop experimental fighter/interceptor with a liquid rocket motor. The plane, which received designation Ye-270 ("zh"), was soon built, but further testing showed no benefits , and stopped work on this topic.

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Page last modified: 23-07-2014 18:08:34 ZULU