Military aviation

IL-2 Sturmovik. A photo. Video. History.


IL-2 (attack) - is a war machine of World War II, which is very well known for its feats of arms in the destruction of the enemy. The designer of the machine is Sergei Ilyushin, who developed this model with 1938 years. This aircraft model is often called the flying tank, because he had an excellent armor that was too tough for the enemy.

IL-Sturmovik 2 scheme

Description IL-2 (attack)


IL-2 was the most famous fighting unit skies during World War II, both among our people, and among enemy troops. At the time, none of the world army had even pathetic semblance of the stormtrooper. He was specialized for flying at low altitudes and thus had invulnerable armored shell. Its main task was to destroy the enemy's manpower and tanks.


In our country in the early 30-ies began active development of ground-attack aircraft with armored fuselage. The forerunners of the IL-2 were heavy armored attack aircraft, which are known under the name TS-1,2 and 3. The main task of the designers was the manufacture of armor that would not be able to break the aerodynamic properties of the aircraft.

IL-Sturmovik 2 Koschevoi

The first models of the TS had curved pieces of armor, which were slightly streamlined, and as a result, this led to a deterioration in the flying properties of the aircraft, while they had a lot of weight. Also, in the first models of this attack aircraft, low-power engines were used, which resulted in low speed and large acceleration in the event of a detachment from the ground. The solution to this problem was the installation of more powerful engines and the use of a new armor that was biconvex. These modifications allowed in the late thirties to produce a real and high-quality ground attack aircraft under the name of IL-2.


The predecessor of the first IL-2 was SB armored attack-2, which had two seats in the cockpit for the pilot and gunner. SB-2 was also designed Ilyushin Design Bureau in the year 1938, the aircraft was equipped with a sheet armor. This kind of armor was used in the aircraft IL-2. It should be noted that the first models were made with wooden IL's body parts, fuselage it was Shell wing and tail wing.


Design features of the Il-2


The chassis in this folded back attack aircraft, and then retracted into the wing body and then closing fairing for improved aerodynamics. As for weapons, the designers came here quite deliberately. Onboard weapons were found in the inner part of the wing and guiding devices for rockets were installed under the wing attack aircraft. Because of armor and mounted engine AM-35 2 IL-developed low speed, just until 400 km / h and landing speed was 140 km / h.

IL-Sturmovik 2 monument

When tested SB-2 aircraft designers have decided that you need to produce a new attack in a single embodiment, to reduce the weight of the aircraft. Thereafter, single-attack aircraft was built, which has shown excellent flight and combat characteristics. This was the first IL-2 - attack with armored fuselage. In 1941 was given model aircraft launched into production at many factories.


Its quality and reliability IL-2 shown in the first years of the war, but there were drawbacks. The biggest flaw was the lack of machine gunner, which could reflect the attack of enemy aircraft with the tail. This shortcoming has led to large losses. An interesting fact is that the title of Hero of the Soviet Union appropriated pilots after ten successful sorties, not after 100, as usual.


Innovations in design IL-2 (attack)


In the first months of the year 1942 Ilyushin Design Bureau held a conference to which were invited testers and pilots who directly were related to the new attack aircraft. This conference was gathered to share experiences and to find out the behavior of the aircraft in combat. When communicating with pilots, it became clear that the main problem and the lack of an aircraft is no second place in the machine gunner. Also pay attention to the designers to enhance engine power and an increase in the caliber of the gun.

IL-2 Stormtrooper soldiers

Following the conference, the designers still come back to the initial two-seat attack aircraft model. Also, the machine gunner was provided by mobile heavy machine gun, which will help to protect the aircraft from the enemy from the rear and will increase the range firepower. Since IL-year 1942 2 began to produce a more powerful engine in 1720 horsepower. It is possible to increase the speed of the aircraft to 420 km / h and acceleration significantly reduced the length of the tear, and it is all at a weight of more than 6 tonnes in full combat configuration.

As for the four 20-millimeter machine guns, their designers have also been replaced with large-caliber guns. This attack is also equipped with anti-tank bombs cumulative. But with all the innovations and upgrades wings console is still made from wood, but only 1943, their design and the materials used have been replaced by more effective.

Due to the addition of the Heavy places had to change the design of all hulls, and was modified fuselage tail of the aircraft. After all the adjustments mass attack aircraft hulls reached 990 kg. All components have been tested hulls shooting. IL-2 were also used during the naval battles to destroy the ship and on land it is easily destroyed tanks and truck convoys of the enemy. This attack was used on the front and with the support of our troops in the near rear.

IL-Sturmovik 2 32

Due to the strong armor and weapons other than this model of attack aircraft called flying tank. For all time of existence of the Soviet Union aircraft plants were produced over 36 thousand armored stormtroopers. Such a huge number of combat vehicles that can really compete for leadership with only the legendary tank T-34.


Combat application legendary stormtrooper


According to official data of the Red Army to the front 1941 years 1,5 sent thousands of planes, Il-2 from 1,1 which lost thousands, but most of the losses were not related to combat missions. Many military units were lost due to unsuccessful maneuvers at low altitudes or due to poor weather conditions.


For all the Great Patriotic War, our army has lost more than 23 thousand aircraft, attack aircraft and more than 7,8 thousand pilots. It should be noted that 12 thousand aircraft was lost not on the battlefield. As for Ihlow, the statistics says that every 53-second flight was the last one for attack aircraft. As for survival, it should be noted that among all types of combat aircraft gunships killed most of all, despite the fact that they had an excellent armor and powerful weapons.

IL-Sturmovik 2 3434

The reason for the large losses of the Ils was the tactics of conducting the battle, as they flew at low altitude and attracted to themselves the entire artillery fire of the enemy. According to the assault units, the number of unsuccessful Ils was 3%. But it should also take into account the fact that after the combat missions half of all returned aircraft had damage from enemy weapons. Sometimes the returned ground-attack planes could count several hundred holes in the fuselage and wings, but after field repairs such a machine could easily return to battle. At the end of the Great Patriotic War, the Soviet Union Army had 3289 units of Il-2 aircraft.


Tactics combat attack aircraft IL-2


The main advantage of such an attack aircraft in combat was that he was working at heights of up to 1 km, and the main combat operations he carried out at the height of 20-50 meters. Because of the low altitude flight Ilu was not afraid of enemy artillery and infantry on the plane easily defended his armor. In turn, the attack would effectively destroy tanks and manpower. At low altitudes, plus was also quite high speed jet to 400km / hour, which could not afford the other attack aircraft that could be dispersed only to three hundred kilometers per hour.

IL-2 Sturmovik scheme

After the destruction of ground targets IL-2 could easily go for an attack on enemy air targets, which, although they had a great rate, but did not have such weapons and armor, as a Soviet attack. An interesting fact is the trick of our pilots, who used external similarity Ila German bomber. Our pilots could be attached to the German aircraft, which suspected nothing, and quietly destroy them.


Construction of IL-2


IL-2 is a single-nizkoplan, different mix designs. His feature - in the power circuit includes airframe armor. It replaced the trim middle and forward fuselage and frame. The carrier consists of a hull of a homogenous steel armor, he closed the cockpit, engine, some units and radiators (hull of a prototype defended bortstrelka). The thickness of the transparent armor cockpit canopy - 64 mm. It is able to withstand armor-piercing bullet 7,62 mm with zero distance.


There is a misconception that IL-2 was originally a two-seater, but on the orders of the military leadership had to redo Ilyushin attack in Single. Due to the lack of defensive armament of the aircraft they had big losses at the beginning of the Great Patriotic War.


In fact, the aircraft was originally ordered a double, but on the initiative of Ilyushin it was converted into a single. The reason for this was unsatisfactory flight performance (climb rate, speed and range), as they did not meet the requirements presented by the Air Force. Simultaneously, other designers worked on the armored Il-2. In order to save his offspring in a highly competitive environment, Ilyushin developed his one-place version. He managed to achieve a reduction in the volume of the armored hull, by removing the firebrigade. In its place was an additional fuel tank, as well as a rear centering reservation for the mass, which could not but cause criticism, since it greatly impaired the controllability of the machine.


Due to the economic weight of the attack meets the legal requirements for speed, and with the installation of additional tank was able to achieve the required range.


Faced with a severe loss of IL-2 without defensive weapons, the Air Force asked the Ilyushin aircraft back to do double that, in fact, been implemented at the end of 1942 hull of change, but does not work, so had to endure is bortstrelka hulls. His defense - six-millimeter sheet of armor, who is from the tail. The pilot protection to rear hemisphere is provided by transverse armor CD, which has a thickness in 12 mm (plus 6 bronespinka mm).

It is worth noting that the hull of which protected both crew members received only late modification of aircraft, namely, IL-10Which began mass-produced in 1944 year.


Armament IL-2

  • Two cannons in the wing consoles (in the basic version - 23 mm VYa, initially - 20 mm ShVAK, in the anti-tank series - 37 mm), 45 mm guns were studied

  • Two machine guns ShKAS, placed on the wings of the aircraft

  • Containers PTAB, bombs

  • Rocket projectiles RS-132 and RS-82

  • · On the two-seater versions, the UTB 12,7 mm machine gun was used as a defensive weapon.


Modifications of IL-2

Produced in both single and double versions. Various structural and technological changes have been made regularly. For example, in the end, the used 1941 aft wooden structure with metal stringers. Changed weapons reservation.

  • Il-2 (single) is a serial modification of the attack aircraft, which does not have a cockpit for the rear gunner. In some units, due to heavy combat losses, attempts were made to convert a single-seat aircraft into a two-seater. In many cases, imitations of the rear gun were created - a dummy installed in the slot of the cockpit.

  • Il-2 (double) was a serial modification, which was equipped with UBT and ShKAS machine guns, as well as a gunner's cabin with a flashlight. Massively exploited in the later periods of the war.

  • Il-2 AM-38F - a serial attack aircraft with a forced engine, characterized by high takeoff power.

  • Il-2 KSS - a serial modification of the Il-2 AM-38F aircraft with exactly the same engine, but forced, with some structural and aerodynamic improvements. Instead of a metal tank, fiber protected gas tanks were used, where after a while most of the small holes were tightened with a projector compound that could thicken in the open air. To improve control and stability, counterbalancers and shock-absorbing springs were installed in the aircraft.

  • Il-4 (Il-2 M-82) - an experimental version of the attack aircraft, which had an M-82 engine with good takeoff power, namely 1675 hp.

  • Il-2 ShFK-37 - a single-seat variant of an attack aircraft armed with two 37 mm aircraft cannons, designed by OKB-15, with an AM-38 engine.

  • · IL-2 NS-37 was a modification of IL-2 AM-38F. The aircraft was equipped with 37 mm cannons, without rockets to improve anti-tank properties.

  • Il-2 NS-45 - a modification of the Il-2 AM-38f aircraft, which has two NS-45 cannons.

  • Il-2T - according to unofficial data, the modification was capable of carrying a torpedo, as a result of which guns had to be sacrificed. Three machine guns remained among the small arms: the rear gunner and two wing guns. But documents that would confirm the existence of this modification have not been found to this day, although there are numerous aircraft models (in addition, this modification is often used in video games).


The Il-2 aircraft, along with the T-34 tank and the Katyusha, became one of the symbols of the Great Patriotic War and victory in it. What is the reason for this? Why IL-2? Let's try to figure it out. First of all, the Il-2 aircraft turned out to be an extremely effective combat unit, namely, an attack aircraft. The attack aircraft also has another name - the aircraft for direct support of the troops, which explains its combat mission.

That is, if tactical bombers (for example Pe-2) have objects of different values ​​and remoteness from the front, strategic aviation (for example Pe-8) is an attack of strategic facilities of the country in the depth of its territory, then Il-2 should participate In the attacks of ground troops, support them, literally "iron" the enemy's combat orders in the process of combat, before and after the battle. In fact, this is flying artillery. Requirements for aircraft of this class are rather peculiar. The main ones are: high firepower, the possibility of point destruction of ground targets and increased survivability of the aircraft. Il-2 possessed all these qualities, that's why he became a legend, which when appearing over the battlefield caused a sharp rise in the fighting spirit of the Red Army soldiers and panic in the horror of the German soldiers.


IL-2. Photo.

yl-2 photo


Now in order. It should be noted that the IL-2 was in fact the first aircraft, which was designed specifically as an attack aircraft, before this in all countries of the world this role was carried out by fighters, which were hung with tons of weapons and armored plates. The Red Army at the time of the beginning of the work on Il-2 had a military doctrine similar to that of Germany - quickly attack, destroy and capture. For such a doctrine, aircraft of the Il-2 class on a number, with fighters, were in demand most of all. Therefore, the development of the new aircraft reacted more than seriously and even developed a new aircraft gun specifically for IL-2 - VY-23.

It was installed in the number of two units, to a greater extent determined the combat effectiveness of the Ila, because it was an accurate and powerful weapon, suitable for destroying everything up to medium tanks and boats. In addition, there was a pair of SHKAS machine guns, with a phenomenal rate of fire of 1800 rounds / minute that simply mowed down enemy personnel. In addition, the IL armed with one more relatively "fresh" invention - rockets, from 4 and up to 16 pieces, which were called PC-82 or PC-132 (a missile with a caliber in millimeters). The weapon was less accurate than the cannons, but more accurate than the bombs, so it took an intermediate place between them.

Well, and also had the opportunity to bomb-caliber 250kg, which further increases the combat effectiveness of the aircraft. Accordingly, IL-2 had a very impressive and varied, and from this a very effective arsenal that fully ensures point defeat individual goals.

Now about the vitality. Aircraft survivability is a parameter that determines the aircraft's resistance to hits. Simply put, the amount of enemy lead that an aircraft is capable of ingesting and continuing to fly. For an attack aircraft, this is an important parameter, because it flies low over the battlefield, at low speeds and traditionally shoots at it everything that is capable of shooting. Il-2 is the first aircraft in the world that had a carrying armored hull that protects the pilot and the engine; before it, armor plates were simply hung on the plane in some places.


IL-2. Video.



This design significantly wins in weight, compared to simply hanging steel, which means it can increase the amount of armor, without deteriorating the flight characteristics of the aircraft. Il-2 had armor, which can only be hit by armor-piercing shells with a caliber from 20mm and above. But do not assume that it was impossible to bring down machine-gun fire, since the wings and tail of the car did not have a reservation and were made of wood. But nevertheless, the survivability of the IL-2 was very high, and even more increased due to the high flight characteristics, in terms of which it was not inferior to the German Bf-109E.

Not for nothing because in the German ground units IL-2 has received such nicknames as "Butcher" or "flying tank", the nickname was well deserved.


IL-2 Sturmovik main characteristics:

  • IL-2 modification
  • Wingspan, m 14.60
  • Length, m 11.60
  • Height, m ​​4.17
  • Wing area, m2 38.50


Weight, kg     

  •   empty aircraft 4525
  •   normal takeoff 6060


Engine Type: 

  • Mikulin AM AP 1-38


Power, hp     

  •   nominal 1 x 1575
  •   breaking 1 x 1665


Maximum speed km / h     

  •  by the ground 370
  •  at an altitude of 411

Practical range, km 685

  • Rate of climb, m / min 417
  • Practical ceiling, m 6000


  • Crew, people 2


Armament Il-2 Stormtrooper:    

  • Two 20-mm cannon ShVAK (on 210 shells on the trunk)
  • Two 7.62-mm machine gun ShKAS (750 on ammo machine gun)
  • One 12.7-mm drill collars to fire back (280 cartridges)
  • PO 8-82 and 400 kg bombs (overload in 600 kg).



Military aviation

OKB Ilyushin Aircraft

Issue more 36000, 23000 loss, in the ranks of more than 3000. Question: What happened to 10000sht.

At the beginning of World War II military aircraft was badly in need of reliable combat units. Togda the Ilyushin design bureau and was designed, and since February 1941 year serially produced IL 2. In total during the war machines of this type have been issued more than 36000, it's more than any other aircraft. IL 2 was the main assault force and impact of our aircraft and has an important role in the outcome of the fighting on the Soviet-German front.
Ilyushin was not the first who tried to create an effective attack to attack ground targets, however, almost all previous models suffered heavy losses from ground fire-arms of the enemy. It was clear that the attack must be good enough to book and have a powerful flight and combat capability.
Attempts to build such an aircraft were repeatedly undertaken by various designers of different countries, but it was Ilyushin who managed to solve this problem. At the heart of his project, he combined all the advanced at that time achievements of science and technology. His apparatus had a powerful engine, armored body of streamlined form, armored glass for the protection of the crew and quick-fire aircraft guns. All this became the main components of the future success of the 2 IL. Despite the fact that the tactics of armored ground-attack planes had not yet been worked out, they began to inflict serious losses on the enemy and acted demoralizing the enemy, who soon called IL2 "black death."
During the war, IL 2 successfully acted against mechanized, armored and other parts of the enemy.
IL 2 safely be called one of the heroes of World War II and argued that without him the victory in the war would have been impossible.


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