Polikarpov I-153


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Polikarpov I-153

Despite an international trend away from the biplane configuration for fighters by the mid 'thirties, the Soviet Air Force vigorously demanded continuation of such warplanes, and, in 1937, one of Polikarpov's principal team leaders, Aleksei Ya Shcherbakov, was assigned the task of developing a more potent fighter biplane. Assisted by Mikhail Gurevich, Shcherbakov created the I-153 (I-15ter), prototype trials commencing in summer 1938. The basic structure of the I-152 was extensively restressed, the Clark YH wing profile was retained, but configuration reverted to the "gulled'' upper wing - resulting in the sobriquet of Chaika being resurrected - and, as a concession to modernity, manually-retractable main undercarriage members were introduced. Initially, the 775hp M-25V engine was retained, armament remaining four 7.62mm guns, but comparatively early in the production run the 1,000hp Shvetsov M-62 engine was standardised, boosting max speed from 415km/h at 3000m to 444km/h at 4600m. Some aircraft were fitted with a quartet of 12.7mm guns (I-153BS) and one, experimentally, with twin synchronised 20mm cannon (I-153P). Production deliveries began during the early spring of 1939, and continued until late 1940, 3,437 examples being produced. Ninety-three were supplied to the Chinese Central Government early in 1940, and the I-153 remained in first-line service until well into 1943.

Polikarpov I-153

  Take-off weight2110 kg4652 lb
  Empty weight1452 kg3201 lb
  Wingspan10.00 m33 ft 10 in
  Length6.17 m20 ft 3 in
  Height2.80 m9 ft 2 in
  Wing area22.14 m2238.31 sq ft
  Max. speed444 km/h276 mph
  Range4 70 km292 miles

Polikarpov I-153A three-view drawing (1280 x 838)

Klaatu83, e-mail, 13.02.2021 16:08

Like the Fairey Albacore, this represented the over-development of an obsolete concept. Yes, it can be said to have been one of the best biplane fighters ever produced. However, by the time it entered service it was already outclassed by existing monoplanes.


sven, 20.09.2015 00:06

On the deck protecting tanks it may well have been a headache for even the 109s.Tight turning and at slow speed it could play to its strengths .At altitude it would be a different story


Jaspreet Singh, e-mail, 18.09.2015 20:32

this is really beautiful aircraft , i was looking for history about this kind of aircraft , short tail Biplane , its really difficult found more about them .


bombardier, e-mail, 13.12.2011 21:31

The I-190 was the biplane equivalent of the I-180.It was the I-153 modified to accept the M-88 radial engine with 1.100hp.It was even faster than the I-153 but by the time it was ready biplanes were obsolete as combat aircraft.


bombardier, e-mail, 23.05.2011 15:05

One of the best biplanes to fly and the fastest production biplane


Ivan Posada, e-mail, 16.05.2008 19:06

this plane was the base of prototype Polikarpov I-190


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