One of the most
formidable military aircraft of World War II, the lIyushin Il-2 was
produced in vast numbers, with Soviet sources giving the total figure
as 36,163 aircraft. To provide a replacement for the Il-2 shturmovik
(ground-attack aircraft), the Ilyushin design bureau developed two
different prototypes in 1943. The Il-8 bore a close resemblance to the
Il-2, but was powered by a more powerful 2,000 hp (1492 kW) Mikulin
AM-42 12-cylinder engine, and had new wings, horizontal tail surfaces
and landing gear married to a late-production Il-2 fuselage. Test flown
in April 1944, the Il-8 was rejected in favour of the contemporary
lIyushin Il-10, which began its test flight programme in that month.
An Ilyushin Il-10 of the Polish Air Force Assault Regiment - 1951
The Il-10 was a
completely new design of all-metal construction and improved
aerodynamic form. It provided better crew accommodation, the gunner
seated with his back to the pilot in an enlarged cockpit, and both crew
members were located within the protective armoured shell. A new
undercarriage with a new retracting system (with wheels laid flat in
the wings after retracting) eliminating the large landing gear fairings
of the Il-2 and requiring only small fairings over the pivoting
mechanism and new cooling air intakes in the wing roots. Early
favourable reports of the prototype test programme led to a batch of
pre-series machines, quantity production being initiated in August
1944, with evaluation in operational regiments starting two months
later. The type was used first in operations in February 1945 and by
that spring output reached a peak. Many regiments re-equipped with the
Il-10 before the German surrender, and a considerable number took part
in the brief but large-scale operations against the Japanese in
Manchuria and Korea during August 1945.
Production of the Il-10
continued into the post-war period, with Soviet factories building
4,966 machines, the last leaving the production lines in 1955.
Additionally, Il-10s were also built at the Czech Avia factory, under
the designations B-33 and CB-33, the latter being the equivalent of the
Il-10U trainer variant. Czech production finished in 1954 when over
1,200 examples had been completed. From 1951 onwards Soviet production
had concentrated on the Il-10M, which featured an entirely new wing of
revised planform and deeper aerofoil section, a slightly lengthened
fuselage, modified landing gear with increased track, and increased
Ihe Il-10 formed the
sole equipment of Soviet assault units for a number of years and was
also used widely by warsaw Pact countries. Other Communist countries to
employ the type included North Korea in the opening stages of the
Korean War in 1950. Losses were heavy and the type was clearly obsolete
but, nevertheless, Il-10s remained in service with the Soviet VVS until
1956 and with various satellite air arms for several years longer, For
some time after that they were flown as gunnery trainers but most had
been scrapped by the mid-1960s.
The Il-10 had been
tested with a ZhRD-l auxiliary rocket engine in the rear fuselage to
provide short-term performance boost, but this modification was not
adopted, The Ilyushin bureau strove to develop later shturmovik
designs, including the Il-20 single-seater and the Il-40 with twin
turbojets, but official encouragement was minimal, the Soviet
authorities having accepted the Western concept of the tactical strike
Avia B-33/CB-33 - Built
in Czechoslovakia (under licence) by the Avia factory, and designated
B-33 in Czechoslovak service. The B-33/IL-10 aircraft was all-metal,
two seat, low-wing monoplane, with two spar wing of an inverted gull
configuration. The fuselage was constructed in three sections. The
forward fuselage being the most interesting, built as an armour shell
with panels varying between 4 mm and 8 mm in thickness. The B-33 was
powered by a 2,000 hp (1492 kW) Mikulin AM-42 12-cylinder
liquid-cooled, inline engine (Czechoslovak designation M-42) with
cruise power of 1,750 hp (1306 kW) at 2,350 rpm. The armament of the
first series was similar to the armament of the Il-2, with two 23 mm
VYa-23 cannons, two 7.62 mm (0.30 in) ShKAKS machine-guns and one 12.7
mm (0.50 in) UBT machine-gun in the rear cockpit. The later series and
all Avia-built B-33s were armed with four wing-mounted 23 mm NS-23
cannons and single 20 mm UB-20 cannon in the rear cockpit. The bomb
load on external racks and in bomb bays was usually 1,102 lbs (500 kg),
and maximally 1,544 lbs (700 kg), and eight RS-82 or RS-132 rockets
carried under the wings. The CB-33 was the Czech eqivalent of the
Il-10U trainer. Due to the characteristic sound of the AM-42 engine and
a sturdy and simple construction, the B-33s were nicknamed "Kombajn"
(combine harvester) by their pilots and ground crews.
Ilyushin Il-10U -
Aircraft used as two seat trainers with duplicate controls in the rear.
All examples were converted from existing aircraft.
Ilyushin Il-10M - Built
from 1951 onwards, the Il-10M featured an entirely new wing of revised
planform and deeper aerofoil section, a slightly lengthened fuselage,
modified landing gear with increased track, and increased fuel
Ilyushin Il-20 - The
Ilyushin Design Bureau and planned to improve and streamline the
Shturmovik series, starting with the proposed single seat Il-20, but it
failed to ever get off the drawing board.
Ilyushin Il-40 - In
order to "modernize" the design in keeping with the new jet age,
Ilyushin had invisioned a twin turbojet version, but official support
for this aircraft was minimal, with the Soviet Authorities favouring
the Western concept of a tactical strike fighter and work was abandoned
in favour of an all new aircraft type.
Type: Two Seat
Design Bureau led by Sergei Vladimorovic Ilyushin
2,000 (1492 kW) Mikulin AM-42 12-cylinder inline piston engine.
Maximum speed 329 mph (530 km/h) at 7,875 ft (2400 m); service ceiling
23,785 ft (7250 m).
Range: 497 miles
(800 km) on internal fuel.
equipped 10,317 lbs (4680 kg) with a maximum take-off weight of 14,407
lbs (6535 kg).
43 ft 11 1/2 in (13.40 m); length 36 ft 3 1/2 in (11.06 m); height 13
ft 8 1/2 in (4.18 m); wing area 322.9 sq ft
(30.00 sq m).
7.62 mm (0.30 in) ShKAS machine-guns and either two 23 mm VYa or two 23
mm NS-23 cannon mounted in the wings and one 20 mm UB-20 cannon or 12.7
mm (0.50 in) UBT machine-gun in the dorsal position plus up to 1,102
lbs (500 kg) of bombs and four RS-82 or RS-132 rockets under the wings.
B-33 (Czech built), CB-33 (Czech built), Il-10U (trainer), Il-10M,
Il-20 (projected single seat), Il-40 (projected twin turbojet).
flight (Il-10) April 1944; production started August 1944; operational
evaluation October 1944; operational service February 1945; end
prodution 1955; initial production (Il-10M) from 1951 onwards;
withdrawn from service (VVS) 1956 but remaining in service with
satellite countries until the mid 1960s.
Soviet Union (VVS), Czechoslovakia, North Korea (People's Democratic
Republic). Czech built aircraft were supplied to Polish, Bulgarian,
Rumanian, and Hungarian Air Forces.