Yakovlev AIR-15


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Yakovlev AIR-15

This is one of the few Yakovlev aircraft which, though actually built, has disappeared leaving almost no records. One of the few references is that of historian Shavrov: 'This was a racing aircraft with a wing profile by T G Glass [a so-called zero-moment aerofoil]. Designed and built in 1938, it was handed to the Central Aero- Hydrodynamic Institute as a research vehicle'.

There is evidence for believing that it was essentially an AIR-14 with a different wing. By the mid-1930s Yakovlev had switched from using the Gottingen-387 and related aerofoil profiles to the simpler Clark YHC, with a flat undersurface. The zeromoment aerofoil would not have been visibly different, and, though it might have increased the stalling and landing speeds, the difference would not have been serious. Accompanying illustrations show what looks like an M-11-engined AIR-14 with a modified wing, completely different undercarriage and AIR-12 type canopy. It is possible that these photographs show the AIR-15. This aircraft was quite apart from the mainstream development, which had already produced the AIR-18 and Ya-21.

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