Iliuszyn Ił-2 Shturmovik (Штурмови́к)
The Ił-2 is a typical ground-attack aircraft. Single-engine, self-supporting low-wing, mixed construction. Good armed and armored. There were single-seat and two-seat varieties. In the two-seat variant, the second crewman was the rear shooter. In the Polish Army, single-seat variety was not used.
The wings are technologically divided into three parts; center wing and two attached wings. The center wing in the interior had a bomb chamber. The outermost ends of the center wing had main landing gear chambers and a mechanism for its concealment.
The fuselage is technologically divided into two parts. The front engine began with the fuel tank and crew cabin behind. The critical elements of the machine were armored. Among them; engine, fuel tank, pilot cabin, oil coolers and engine coolant. The armor is made of thick steel plates, joined by rivets or screws. The rear part of the fuselage was classic, made of metal or metal and wood. Classic shutdown, divided into ballasts and rudders. Made of metal or mixed construction.
Three-support chassis with rear support. Main landing gear supported and hidden in the wings, towards the rear. Each main chassis was equipped with one wheel on two shins. After hiding the chassis, the wheel partially protruded from the contour of the wing. The tail wheel was permanently mounted.
The aircraft's equipment was less than modest. There was no bomber sight, only a simple shooting sight. There was no radio station. Only a few planes of key or squadron commanders had them. It was only after the war that all aircrafts were equipped with radio stations in Polish regiments. There was no fire protection installation. Aircrafts did not have any lighting, including anti-collision. Only some clocks on the pilot's instrument panel were highlighted. It was only later that the reflector was mounted in the leading edge of the left wing. The aircraft did not have throwaway chairs. The crew had parachute seats.
The AM-38 engine, piston, 12-cylinder V system with 60 degrees opening. Liquid-cooled. Depending on the version, it achieved power from 1,600 hp to 1,700 hp. The engine was designed by Aleksander Mikulin. The engine was made of poor quality raw materials and was highly stocked, so its lifetime rarely exceeded 150 hours of work.
The armament was strong side of the aircraft. Of course in the offensive system. Permanent weaponry. The basis was two machine guns. Initially, the type SzWAK kal 20 mm. Later, the plot WJa kal 23 mm. The armament were supplemented with two machine guns, the type SzKAS kal 7.62 mm. Everything was mounted in the wings.
Bombs were attached in the bomb chamber.
It was possible to hang up additional bombs or wings, under the wings. RS-82 or RS-132. It was also possible to suspend containers with 37 or 45 mm calibres. The two-seater version, in the rear station, has the machine gun, the type UBT km 12.7 mm.
Written by Karol Placha Hetman