Russian aviation in WW1 and Civilian War
|Илья Муромец||Ilya Murometz (the 1st flight in 1913 !) was a 4-engined tractor biplane of gigantic size designed by Sikorsky and built by Russo-Balt factory in Riga, Russian Empire. It was an excellent aircraft for long-range recon and bomb (starting from V version, which had the bombsights installed) missions. Ilya Murometz's endurance equaled 4..5 hours with the bombs or 10 hours for reconnaissance. The bombload consisted of multiple small bombs or several big bombs (160, 240, 400 and even 640 kg i.e. 300, 400, 750 and 1200 lbs). The bombsights accuracy was excellent with 60..90% of the bombs hit a targets. Another instruments were very good too, ones allowed even to perform night operations from the begin of the war. Defensive armament was upgraded during the war and consist of 3..8 machineguns and automatic rifles).|
|Details (data and photos)|
Starting from G-series IM had the spherical area of defensive fire.
That was quite enough to hold the enemy fighters away: only one IM (the commander - lt. Maksheyev)
was shot down by the interceptors during the war, and Germans lost 3 planes of 4 in this battle (Sept. 12, 1916).
In total the IMs have shot down at least 12 German and Austrian planes.|
The 1st air combat of IM was on 19th July 1915, when the plane of lt. Bashko was attaked by 3 Branderburgs and shot down 1 of them. The IM was damaged, but landed with only 2 engines working.
Another combats: in June 6, 1915 alone Ilya Murometz was attacked by 3 Heinkels and shot down 2 of them.
In June 1916 Ilya Murometzs of capt. Lavrov was attacked by 4 Fokkers and shot down 3 of them and damaged the 4th one. IM took some damage too, and one of his engines was quit, but the plane managed successfully return to the homebase.
On 8th May 1917, IM of capt. Klembovskiy had a battle with 3 Fokkers and shot down 2 of them.
a modern replica of Ilya Muromets - click to enlarge
|Russian/Soviet air symbols|
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