Aviation of World War II

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Heavy Cannon Fighter

In November 1940 N.N. Polikarpov took the initiative to create single-engine heavy cannon fighters, at the end of 1940 Polikarpov sent a draft design to the Air Force Research Institute. Essentially, Polikarpov was the first to propose a new class of aircraft: single-engine fighter bombers and air tank destroyers. According to the declared flight and tactical data, the ITP, even with the M-105P engine, had higher flight and tactical characteristics than the A.S. cannon fighter. Yakovleva Yak-3 M-105PF2 (1945).

The two-spar wing of the ITP was trapezoidal with elliptical tips and detachable consoles. Duralumin sheathing, blind riveting. The wing had powerful Shrenk-type landing flaps and automatic slats.

In May 1941, the construction of the first copy of the ITP (M-1) began, which was completed in October.

The aircraft's armament included one B.G. Shpitalny Sh-37 caliber 37 mm with a stock of 50 shells with belt feed, which is a development of the ShFK-37 cannon and two synchronous ShVAK cannons of 20 mm caliber with a total stock of 280 shells. The suspension of eight RS-82 rockets was provided under the wing. Instead of the RS-82, bombs with a total mass of 200 kg could be suspended.

The tests of the fighter took place already in evacuation, where on February 23, 1942, test pilot A.N. Nikashin lifted the car into the air for the first time. However, due to numerous engine defects, it was still not possible to complete the tests in Siberia. The latter continued already in Moscow, when at the end of 1942 a new M-107PA engine was installed on the plane, and the 37-mm motor-gun was replaced by a 20-mm one with 200 rounds of ammunition.

Naturally, after these alterations, the ITP could no longer be fully considered as an anti-tank aircraft, although in the fight against light tanks it could be more effective than the IL-2, since there were three ShVAK guns and, in addition, their more compact placement ensured a higher firing accuracy, and the ability to dive at angles of 50-60 ° expanded the zones available for destruction of tanks.

In addition, the aircraft would have had better maneuverability, since the empty weight of the aircraft decreased from 2778 to 2588 kg, and the take-off weight from 3570 to 3366 kg.

ITP (M-2)
Crew 1
Length, m 9.20
Height, m 2.65
Wing span, m 10.00
Wing area, m² 16.50
Weight, kg:
Empty 2,910
Loaded weight 3,570
1 × PE AM-39, power, h.p. 1 × 1800
Maximum speed over ground, km/h 540
Maximum speed at altitude, km/h 655
Maximum rate of climb, m/min 835
Service ceiling, m 11,500
Service range, km 980

ITP (M-2) with an AM-37 engine and three synchronous ShVAK cannons was built in Novosibirsk in 1942. In December it was transferred to Moscow, where the AM-37 engine was replaced by a more powerful AM-39 (1800 h.p.), and smaller wheels were installed on the main struts.

November 23, 1943 ITP (M-2) performed its first flight. During the tests in the nominal mode, the maximum flight speed at the ground was obtained - 540 km/h and at the first design altitude of 2500 m - 570 km/h. In afterburner mode, respectively 600 and 650 km/h.

The unreliability of the M-107 and AM-39 engines greatly hampered the development. All work on the aircraft was stopped after the death of Polikarpov in July 1944.

Photo Description

Drawing ITP


  • "History of aircraft designs in the USSR, 1938-1950." /V.B. Shavrov /
  • "The Last Fighter of Polikarpov" / Wings of the Motherland. Efim Gordon. /
  • "From I-17 to ITP" / Aviation and Time. Yuri Guglya. /