AT THE CROSSROADS OF TWO EPOCHS

The first post-war years in OKB G. M. Beriev was created long-range Maritime reconnaissance flying boat Be-6 — undoubtedly, staged the aircraft for the Russian naval aviation. For a starting point in the history of the be-6 should adopt the August of 1942, when G. M. Beriev sent to the people’s Commissariat of aviation industry explanatory note to “the Conceptual design of a sea scout open sea MDR-10”. Proposed heavy (weighing up to 22 000 kg) twin-engine flying boat with a wing type gull, two-keel plumage, a long range and powerful armament.

It was expected that the car will be used not only as a long-range Maritime reconnaissance, but also as a reconnaissance aircraft-air photographer, amphibious plane, amphibious with removable chassis. Time for the country and for KB was heavy, the Germans rushed to the Volga, and EDB after the evacuation of Taganrog, Omsk was established its work almost from scratch and in parallel handed over to the Navy seaplanes KOR-2. Therefore, the project remained on paper, but in it were laid the basic ideas embodied later in a flying boat LL-143, Be-6 and amphibian be-12.
 
The project, MDR-10, G. M. Beriev returned at the end of 1942 the experience of the war clearly showed that the aircraft fleet in dire need of heavy seaplanes. The need was filled by lend-lease American aircraft of the DITCH, called in the British fleet, and then in the United States “Catalinae”.
 
However, the supply of MOAT did not solve the problem, and it was clear that we need a domestic car of this class. Offer G. M. Beriev was reviewed and approved by the commander of naval aviation by S. F. Zhavoronkov and the people’s Commissar of the Navy Admiral N. G. Kuznetsov. They sent a memo to the people’s Commissar of aviation industry A. I. Shehurina, which authorized the development and construction of a new aircraft.
The customer has put the following requirements for the new distant sea seaplane scout: two engines, take-off weight 20 000 — 25 000 kg, maximum speed — 400 km/h, flight range up to 5000 km, the flight duration up to 20 hours, a ceiling of 5,000 — 6,000 m, payload up to 4000 kg.
 
As in Omsk for the construction of such a machine was missing the appropriate capacity, NCAP order of 5 may 1943, OKB G. M. Beriev was moved to Krasnoyarsk factory # 477.
 
By the end of 1943, was completed preliminary design of a flying boat LL-143 — a relative name given to the machine, and in early 1944 was the mock-up Committee.
 
AT THE CROSSROADS OF TWO ERAS
 
According to the General layout of the plane, repeating the MDR-10, was an all-metal design with fabric covering the rudders and ailerons. As the power plant for LL-143 was chosen for two two-row “star” air-cooled ASH-72 takeoff power of 2250 HP, developed by OKB of A. D. Shvetsova.
 
Missile armament consisted of six machine-guns UBT, on the external load placed bombs of various caliber naval mines and torpedoes weighing up to 4000 kg as the LL-143 was intended to apply not only as a long-range Maritime reconnaissance, but also for patrol of water areas, minefields, bombing and torpedo, transportation.
 
14 April 1944 was built the first prototype LL-143. The car has collected thirteen months after laying. At the end of may 1945 it rusticoville by rail was transported to Taganrog where it was supposed to return from the evacuation of the OKB. In early 1946, this also brought the unfinished second instance the LL-143.
 
The Assembly and preparation of the aircraft in Taganrog took two months, and August 15, 1945 began the factory tests, which on the proposal of the commander of naval aviation by S. F. Zhavoronkov was combined with a state.
 
After carrying out Jogging 6 September 1945 was the first flight with a crew consisting of pilot, N. P. Kotakova and a flight engineer D. J. Chernetsky. Testing continued until 17 November and was terminated in connection with the freezing of Taganrog Bay. During this time, made ten flights with a total duration of 5 HR 31 min. Eight of them were dedicated to fine-tuning of the propellers AB-9F-17P on the engines AL-72.
 
All winter the car does not fly and once again took to the skies only may 27, 1946, the Second series consisted of 19 flights with a touch 19 hours, 39 minutes, six of which are for fine-tuning the oil system and new variable-pitch propellers AV-9M-91.
 
Test pilots, said: “the Plane LL-143 flying qualities simple and quite affordable pilot of average skill”.
 
The final test period coincided with the release of the order of I. V. Stalin dated February 9, 1946 and the Decree of the USSR of 21 June 1946 No. 1289-527с on the transformation of EDO State Union experimental plant №49 Maritime aircraft. The new company became the only design team in the country, creating seaplanes.
 
On the basis of the technical documentation of the LL-143 in December 1944, was developed a conceptual design of a passenger flying boat PL-144, capable of carrying up to 40 passengers with Luggage and a cargo of mail. In September 1946 in Taganrog was built the layout of its cabin, the layout approved by the Commission. But I had no continuation, as OKB started development of the project LL-143.
 
The layout of flying boat LL-143
 
The layout of flying boat LL-143
 
The first test of the LL-143 was completed quite successfully. In conclusion, act on the results of state tests of the first prototype LL-143, signed on 27 July 1946, noted:
 
“To provide the aircraft into service of naval aviation, the Commission considers it necessary to:
 
— a complete state testing of the second instance of the construction of aircraft engines AL-73 and military trials in the conditions of the combat units of naval aircraft;
 
— modernization of weapons and equipment based on the experience of the last war and new means of searching vehicles, communication and navigation”.
 
G. M. Beriev knew that by installing new motors and future equipment, it will give the child more chances for a long life. Development of the upgraded version took place in several stages.
 
The first option, the designation Be-6 (or Bø-6-2-AL-73), were in fact the source of LL-143 with new engines AL-73 (unlike the Tu-4 without turbochargers), takeoff power of 2400 HP, and the deck infantry unit with two 20-mm cannons B-20 and UBT guns.
 
In addition, on the basis of BAA-6-2-ASH-73 was developed by the project passenger flying boat (up to 31 passengers). Rather, “polupansiona”, as the plane was originally calculated on the conversion of the military transport, and if necessary even in a bomber with a maximum bomb load of 2000 kg.
 
However, such “hybrid bomber” remained in the draft, but the seaplane BAA-6-2-ASH-73, in accordance with the Decree of the USSR of April 25, 1947, was built of backlog in the second instance the LL-143, imported from Krasnoyarsk. It eliminated some of the defects detected during the testing of the first LL-143.
 
Here it is necessary to digress for the sake of clarity with the marking. , The company has developed and tested several variants of the flying boat, which had a different factory codes. However, in the documents of the customer they all had to like Be-6, except showing the most dramatic changes (e.g., Be-6 with guns HP-23).
 
Note that even in 1947 the USSR CM Resolution No. 1922 dated 6 June G. M. Beriev for the creation of the be-6 in advance awarded the Stalin prize II degree.
 
Be-6
 
Be-6
 
Seaplane Be-6
 
Seaplane Be-6
 
Seaplane Be-6:
 
1 — gun HP-23 on the setting N-2; 2 — propeller In-ST-A5; 3 — antenna coherent radio station RSB-5: 4 — blister sighting station PS-48M; 5 — deck gun mount of SEB-FOR; 6 — keel; 7 — rudder; 8 — trimmer of the rudder; 9 — aft artillery installation Il-K6; 10 — water wheel; 11 — Luc radar PSBN-M; 12 — front of the redan; 13 — float lateral stability; 14 — bringatrailer shield; 15 — trimmer Aileron; 16 — Aileron; 17 — flaps; 18 — the Elevator; 19 — trimmer pitch control; 20, 21, 22 — doors for the crew

 
Factory flight tests of the be-6-2-ASH-73 was held in Taganrog from 1 July to 3 November 1948, a Leading test pilot, was appointed M. V. Tsepilov, senior engineer — I. G. Kozelsky. The first flight lasting 22 minutes, the crew completed 2 July. The tests were carried out intensively for three months made 34 flights (including one on the closed route with a length of 2074 km over the sea of Azov) with the common touch 43 h 35 min.
 
In addition Tsepilova, 16 and 17 September, the aircraft overflew the Deputy chief of Department of combat training of the headquarters of the Navy aviation Lieutenant Colonel N. F. Piskarev and the commander of the regiment, VMAU, Lieutenant-Colonel A. M. Sitnov. In their opinion, the aircraft in piloting was simple and affordable for the average marine pilot, however, the criticism has caused the design of the canopy that impede the review, awkward pedals and the lack of de-icing devices on carriers planes, which excluded flights in adverse weather conditions.
 
In addition, the defensive armament was deemed insufficient, and without radar Maritime reconnaissance in those years seemed to have a clear anachronism. Therefore, along with the testing the be-6-2-AL-73, in accordance with the USSR CM Resolution №2051-803 of June 12, 1948, designed and built his version with power weapons, new equipment and accommodation on Board a group of Marines. In the documents of the Bureau, this machine was called “transport seaplane and scout Be-6TR”.
 
In parallel, on the basis of the be-6TR has studied a variant of the amphibious Be-10 (the first aircraft design Bureau with the same name), the main difference which had a tricycle retractable landing gear.
In the late autumn of 1947 the construction of the layout Be-6TR, and from 10 to 13 December, he meticulously studied the mock-up Committee. Unlike the original version, the machine guns were replaced by 20-mm cannons B-20E, installed new equipment and radar gals with the antenna unit in the bow of the boat. This name appeared in the documents of the mock-up fee. Later it was applied to transmission stations installed on the ground Be-6M. In addition, changing the design of the center section, the tail of the boat, lights of the cockpit and Navigator.
 
On the wing decided to install anti-icing system of the type niirp. Later, based on the experience of flights on the ground Be-6, perekomponovkoy cabin Be-6TR, changing the glazing, rather than the emergency side of the door there were hatches in the top of the canopy. The crew grew to eight people, as it included a radar operator.
 
Construction Be-6TR ended in the winter of 1949/50, and the boat was transferred to the factory flight tests, which took place in Poti on the basis of the 82nd, amdrea of the BSF air force (far separate Maritime reconnaissance aviation squadron) in Taganrog.
 
The report on the results of tests, approved August 31, 1950, it was concluded that the aircraft meets the requirements and can be transferred to the state tests. However, radar and interrogator hoopsnake not fully tested, because the specialists of such a profile OKB were not yet available.
 
Test Be-6TR was nearing completion when the customer in the face of the command of the Navy of the USSR considered it insufficient defensive armament and 23 June 1950 gave a new tacticities requirements. According to the requirements of the military and the USSR CM Resolution №2476-975 of June 10, 1950, has developed a new variant flying boat, designated as Be-6M.
 
From the previous car it was different enhanced armament, which consisted of 23-mm cannons NR-23 with the sighting stations of PS-48M. To protect the rear hemisphere decided to use a well-proven Il-28 stern installation Il-K6 with two NR-23 rear sight ASP-SN. From the side firing plants declined at all.
 
The radar psbn replaced by PSBN-M, with its antenna to provide the circular review was moved from the bow to the sixth compartment of the boat, where she was nominated in-flight via a hatch in the floor. The aircraft was fitted with translational prefix “gals” used to transfer the image from the display of radar on shore and shipboard command posts. The cab radio operator was moved from sixth in the third compartment.
 
The plane was equipped with a new volostnova, removed the outboard fuel tanks, said two tanks in the wing and have changed the pattern of supply of fuel. The equipment included an autopilot AP-5, radio compass ark-5, altimeter RV-2, radio station RSB-5 and RSIU, aircraft intercom SPU-14.
 
In connection with the changes had to significantly alter the hull of the boat, including sew a cargo hatch in the third compartment, which now occupied the cabin of the radio operator and the operator.
 
Factory testing of the be-6, converted from Be-6TR, took place from 7 January to 12 February 1951 near the town of Poti on the Paleostomi lake on the basis of the 82nd, amdrea of the air force BSF. The plane arrived from Taganrog, on 4 December 1950
 
Be-6 patrol flying. The floor of the fuselage is visible released radar antenna
 
The be-6 patrol flying. The floor of the fuselage is visible released radar antenna
 
Suspension torpedoes under the wing of the be-6
 
Suspension torpedoes under the wing of the be-6
 
The timing of the completion of the work was very hard, as the military hurried with the launch of a series of aircraft and taking it on Board. Tests conducted by specialists, already familiar with machines of this type. The lead engineer left And G. Kozelsky, the crew of a test pilot G. I. Buryanov, the mechanic of D. Y. he and S. I. Kondratenko, P. F. Kiryanov radio operator, radio operator-gunner M. I. Suprunova headed by senior test pilot M. V. Tsepilov. From the Navy in testing was attended by engineer-Colonel R. M. Sobchenko and M. N. Misha.
 
Winter 1950/51, on the Caucasian coast was, according to local ideas, very severe and several times due to bad weather the flight had to be interrupted.
 
March 24, 1951 in the same place in Poti the car was on the state of the control test, which lasted until April 19 (April 5, machine peresypi in Taganrog).
 
The plane has earned a very positive evaluation of pilots and specialists from NII-15: “In piloting the aircraft is simple, …allows takeoff and landing with crosswind up to 12 — 15 m/s…
 
The seaplane has good sea keeping qualities and can be operated … at a wind wave height of 1.5 m and winds of up to 20 m/s…
 
At its performance data and high performance (…) of be-6 significantly exceeds in service with the Navy aviation imported the boat RVM-1 “Catalina”. High seaworthiness can successfully use it on the North and Pacific theaters.
 
Flying boat Be-6 essential and can be recommended for adopting parts of Navy aviation “
 
After numerous peredeo the fate of the aircraft finally decided. This variant of the seaplane under the designation Be-6 (“M”) launched into serial production at the factory number 86 in Taganrog.
 
For the aircraft Be-6 was a very complex machine, its development proved difficult, the quality of work left much to be desired.
 
In the end, the military offered to “oblige (…) comrade. Beriev be addressed at present (…) Be-6 these defects and disadvantages, and before April 1, 1953, to transmit it to re-test trials. Director of factory No. 86 to require to eliminate in mass production and all previously released machines manufacturing defects, (…) comrade. Shvetsova be required to conduct research on adjustment of engines AL-73.
The proposals had been effectively addressed and the conclusions have been made fast enough. Reviews on the aircraft be-6 from the first to the fourth series, held military trials from July 1953 to April 1954 on the basis of 977, amdrup aviation black sea fleet in Poti, was already quite sympathetic.
 
Drill the pilots noted that the plane is easy to fly and available to pilots of average skill, well managed when flying at speeds of 200 km/h to a maximum, stable glissirovat in the whole range of speeds, sets no trends to separate from water and protopine fluctuations in mileage.
 
Praised aviators rich for its time, the set of equipment, primarily radar. Engines AL-73 proved to be quite reliable, and their adjustment is not cause special difficulties of the mechanics.
 
The criticism primarily low resistance of the aircraft structure to corrosion and leakage at the deck of the boat, the difficulty of flight in adverse weather conditions due to shortcomings in the equipment cabin and the poor performance of anti-icing system of the front glass of the lantern.
 
In addition, the rapid leaving of workplaces of the pilots strapped to a parachute in an emergency, proved almost impossible. But the main drawback of all, without exception, called the lack of search submarines in a submerged position.
 
Upon completion of the tests definitively confirmed the view that the be-6 should be used primarily for long-range Maritime reconnaissance and for search and destruction of submarines on the surface. The aircraft could be used as search and rescue, and laying minefields and the bombing on poorly protected marine and coastal targets.
 
In General, the combat effectiveness of Be-6 significantly exceeded outdated “Catalina”, which still remained the main marine scout in the USSR. However, as the military tests in the daily operation of be-6 was much more complicated American amphibians.
 
Wishes and concerns of the military were taken into account, and the aircraft of the last series, starting with No. 5601602, got air-thermal anti-icing system for wing and tail, new seats pilots, and a system pressurization of the fuel tanks by neutral gas. Managed to improve the layout of the nose of the aircraft.
 
Only from 1952 to 1957 he released a 123 car.
 
To improve the be-6 in the OKB-49 was started immediately after starting the machine. In 1953, he studied the possibility of installation on production aircraft mounted amphibious chassis.
 
Basic data collection of seaplanes Be-6
 
Basic data collection of seaplanes Be-6
 
 
The first major modification of the basic aircraft was rescue variant, designated Be-6СС (rescue service). Modernization was made by removing the cannon systems, workplace, deck hand, photographic equipment, bunks on the starboard side and seat landing on the left side of the boat in the compartment between frames No. 19 and No. 23.
 
In return the captured equipment installed special electronic search tools and discovery — receptor “Pin-A-4” (receive signals emergency stations “Camellia”) and attachment to radio ARC-5U “Flow” of the suggester and receiving on Board casualties and providing first aid.
 
Only a seaplane can take 15 people, of which 12 were placed on the seats and three for hanging beds. The crew included a paramedic, which mounted the seat, Desk, and a special Cabinet with the necessary tools and medicines.
 
Test lifeguard was conducted from 11 June to 18 July 1958 on the basis of 977, odrap air force black sea fleet in Poti.
 
But in the series, the plane went, the more that 22 Dec 1960 naval aviation command has approved new requirements for search and rescue aircraft. Obtained by conversion of the be-6 Be-6СС experience is very useful when you create a Be-14 and be-12PS.
 
The only modification that have reached mass production, became the ASW aircraft Be-6ПЛО. It to detect submarines in the submerged position placed the first domestic system of sonobuoys (RSL) “Baku”, which included aircraft receiving automatic radio SPARU-55 “Pamir” and a set of 18 non-directional passive buoy RGB-N IVA.
 
Outwardly Be-6ПЛО different from the base variant lack of fodder fire installation Il-K6-53Бе, on the spot where stood the magnetosensitive unit aviation magnetometer AMP-56 “read.”
 
The tests were conducted from July to November 1953 in the Black sea based at lake Paleostomi and continued in the Barents sea. As the purpose is served latest at the time of diesel submarine project 613, which at a speed of six knots confidently detected at depths up to 50 m and a distance of 1500 — 2000 m.
 
Be-6ПЛО in the search option of carrying RGB in 16 knots of the external suspension. When executing strike missions in their place hung magazine with deep bombs PLAB-MK, each of which had a capacity of 57 bombs.
 
The conversion Be-6 anti-submarine aircraft began in the black sea and Baltic fleets in 1954, in the North in 1955, in the Pacific in 1956— 1957
 
The last modification was the seaplane Be-6 “Liner” (“KL”), which in 1965 — 1967 he worked on the installation of communication systems with submerged submarines. But in June 1966, work was suspended, in order for them to continue on another machine (serial No. 4601403). Modified the be-6 in 1967, handed to the test in 318-th separate anti-submarine aviation regiment, black sea fleet in Donuzlav. By results of tests the subject was closed.
 
In addition to the aircraft of the Navy of the be-6 was a “citizen” — in Polar aviation. From 1955 to 1957, seven flying boats were refitting at the factory number 86 in Taganrog. They filmed all the weapons and installed additional fuel tanks.
 
In 1959 — 1960 about 20 cars from the Navy handed over to China, where they far outlived their counterparts in the Soviet Union.
 
On August 22, 1951 by order of the naval Minister long-range Maritime reconnaissance Beriev be-6 was adopted. By September 1953 in naval aviation, there were only 20 serial be-6. In the same month, began transition training on new equipment the personnel of the 17-th andrae of the Baltic fleet.
 
The black sea fleet to the development of new flying boats began in early 1953 977-th trap. The crews of the regiment from 20 July to 18 August 1954 surpassed 18 Be-6 for the Pacific fleet.
 
By mid-1955 on all fleet transition training of flight personnel for the be-6 is mostly ended, although the 289-th regiment of the Pacific fleet was entirely on a new machine only to August 1957
 
Having begun its service in naval aviation as a long-range scouts, Be-6 directly involved in the unfolding of Soviet-American confrontation of the sea. The Pacific fleet, flew for exploration in the sea of Japan, immediately became the targets of interception on the part of the fighters of the 7th fleet of the United States. The Yankees gave the newcomer his code name Magda.
 
In the course of combat training of divisions of reconnaissance aircraft of the Navy had traditionally been part of the bombing day and night in simple and adverse weather conditions and high-altitude torpedo. The center of gravity of study began to shift in the direction of razvedochnoe and flying on maintaining the operational mode in the area of responsibility of their fleets.
 
Such flights lasted usually 8 — 10 hours, but the regiments had planes with extra fuel tanks that could stay in the air for up to 20 hours. In this case, on Board were two crew. Tactical radius of the be-6 was possible to explore a considerable area. North sea flying boat of lots of these flights have reached the island of Spitsbergen.
 
The crews of the reconnaissance regiment of the Northern fleet were involved in the security held in the fifties of the nuclear tests on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago. Their task was aerial reconnaissance over the area adjacent to the landfill areas, but sometimes Be-6 were set the task of air sampling of radioactive clouds.
 
Despite the successful beginning of the career of the be-6 Maritime reconnaissance was short-lived. With the advent in 1954 reactive Il-28R flying boat in this capacity, has ceased to hold the command of naval aviation.
 
The equipment of the aircraft special means of finding submarines immediately raised new questions. There was no experience of the use of these systems has not been worked out the tactics of search and the interaction between the ASW aircraft and ship poiskovoye groups (CPWG).
 
Gradually, the pilots accumulated the necessary experience, developed search patterns and tracking, conducted numerous research exercises. It is on the be-6 for the first time worked which later became the standard for ASW aircraft such tactics as “cross” and covering the barrier of the RSL.
 
Improved and on-Board equipment of a flying boat. In 1960 — 1962 aircraft aviation of the black sea fleet and the Federation Council set the automatic navigation device ANP-1 “Azov”, which provides a dead reckoning path of the aircraft and allowing access to the switch point of the device. With the use of ANP-1 appeared to aim at the attack boats in a submerged position, and after the installation on multiple machines measure the Doppler ground speed and drift angle of DISS-1 combat maneuvers even more simplified.
 
P-6 was held the trial operation of the first variant pricelineairfareuqw device, PVU-C “lilacs.” Subsequently, after significant improvements, the system was moved to the be-12. Since 1962 Be-6 were equipped with new, more sensitive magnetometers APM-60 “Orsha”.
 
One of the first detections of the submarine occurred in 1958 in the Northern fleet. The crew of the be-6 was produced tracking the submarine with the help of the RSL for 4.5 h, and then transferred the contact surface ships. In 1959, the pilots of the Northern fleet of the newly discovered foreign submarine. In tracking her, primape part three Be-6ПЛО.
 
The search area was expanded, and in 1957 on the be-6 rearmed shelves on Sakhalin island (lake Chibisanskoe) and the Kamchatka Peninsula (Bay Berry). Good seaworthiness of the boat repeatedly saved by marine pilots in critical situations. For example, the crew of captain Narodnoi due to engine failure sat night in the open sea. The plane was detected in 14 hours and safely towed to the base.
 
With the beginning of the 1960s, the Navy was able to conduct extensive anti-submarine operations, and the order of the Minister of defence of the USSR from March 23, 1961 donnersbachwald sea shelf p-6 was renamed the anti. The composition of the piece includes two anti-submarine squadrons and one rescue.
 
23 Mar 1963 anti-submarine helicopter Mi-4ПЛ found in the range of combat training of Northern fleet the unknown submarine. The be-6 was organized by tracking it, together with helicopters and surface ships. Despite the attempts of the boats to break away from persecution and use sonar jamming, the tracking continued for 33 h
 
Spending capacity batteries, the submarine surfaced. It was the British diesel submarine S07 Sea Lion.
 
After this incident, “probable enemy” draw appropriate conclusions, and exploration in the Barents sea were conducted only nuclear submarines. To follow them was much harder, and be-6 with this task could not cope. By 1968 — 1969 in the anti-aircraft regiments they were replaced by the be-12 and Il-38.

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