|Engines (two)||5000kg (8600kg) AL-7 (MR-40)||6500kg (10000kg) AL-7F|
|Wing Load (kg/m2)||435||480.6|
one fixed forward, two remotely controlled in tail
Continuing development of front line bombers, team of S.V.Ilyushin started development of supersonic jet bomber, capable to achieve speed M=1.15 at altitude 4750m and deliver 3000kg bombs at range 2400-2750km.
Two preliminary layouts were approved by S.V.Ilyushin.
|Il-54 takeoff kneeling, from Russian Power|
The rear wheels (carrying less load than front ones) was equipped with kneeling mechanism, allowing to double incidence angle on takeoff. Traditional for bicycle scheme retractable wing tip supports assisted on taxi and Takeoff Roll.
Three men crew included pilot, navigator and radio operator-gunner in the extreme tail. All 'work places' were heavily armored and equipped with ejection seats (pilot - upwards, navigator and gunner - downwards). In case of emergency landing each crew member could use an escape hatch on the top of his cockpit. Inflatable raft was ejected automatically if Il-54 was water-landed.
|Il-54 versions, from Russian Power|
Following versions were considered for the Il-54:
Trials of the first Il-54 (AL-7 engines) started on April 3, 1955. Aircraft was flown by V.K.Kokkinaki and pilot noticed good in-flight handling, while landing and takeoff were somewhat more complicated than with traditional landing gear. Later same year second Il-54 was flown with upgraded AL-7F engines.As a result of those tests pair of ventral fins were added under the tail.
Despite Il-54 passed all tests and satisfied all requirements, it did not see mass production. Country leadership was fascinated with guided missile progress and underestimated role of combat aircraft.
Western mass media questioned existence of such a bomber in Soviet arsenals, until on June 25, 1956 Il-54 was demonstrated on airshow near Moscow (Tushino? Domodedovo?) under fake designation Il-149 and 36 Il-54s performed a fly-past on the airforce parade following year.
|Modified December 2, 1997||Back to|