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3rd of July 1952

It was on this day in aviation history that the Yakolev Yak-24 made its flight. The Yak-24 (NATO codename "Horse") was developed by Yakolev in the early 1950s.

Two prototypes were built by Yakalov, receiving unlimited funding by order of the government. One airframe for static and dynamic ground tests, and a second for flight testing.

Powered by two Shvetsov ASh-82V, a 14 cylinder radial engines. This engine was the helicopter version of the ASh-82 engine which was designed in 1940. It was a 41 litre (2.5115 cu in) engine that was used in a large number of aircraft. And therefore produced in great numbers, over 70.000 were built, also under license in East Germany and Czechoslovakia into the 1960s.

The initial design of the helicopter ran into some trouble with the engine, drive and rotor configuration. The design was such that both engines were linked together so each could drive one or both rotors. This safety feature caused vibration issues that had to be resolved before production was started.

Once resolved the Soviet Air Force ordered the Yak-24. Exact production numbers are varying between 40 and 100. The limited production of the Yak-24 was caused by the successful Mil Mi-6. Several versions of the Yak-24 were produced;

  • Yak-24 An army transport helicopter, capable of carrying 30 troops, 18 stretchers or 3000kg (~6600 lb) of cargo.

  • Yak-24A Civil variant for 30 passengers, also used as flying crane with a load capacity of 5000 kg (~11.000 lb)

  • Yak-24K Proposed 9 seat VIP aircraft

  • Yak-24P Proposed 39 passenger version, powered by turboshaft engines

  • Yak-24U Produced from 1958 with bigger rotors and a capacity for 40 troops or 3500 kg (~7700 lb) cargo

Some specifications of the Yak-24-U version

  • Crew: four (two pilots, flight engineer and radio operator)[5]

  • Capacity: 40 soldiers, 18 stretchers, or 3,500 kg (7,716 lb) of cargo[6]

  • Length: 20.00 m (65 ft 7 in) (fuselage length); Overall length (including rotors): 34.03 m (111 ft 8 in)

  • Height: 6.50 m (21 ft 4 in)

  • Empty weight: 11,000 kg (24,251 lb)

  • Max takeoff weight: 15,830 kg (34,899 lb)

  • Powerplant: 2 × Shvetsov ASh-82V 14-cylinder radial engines, 1,300 kW (1,700 hp) each

  • Main rotor diameter: 2× 21.00 m (68 ft 11 in)

  • Main rotor area: 693 m2 (7,460 sq ft)

  • Maximum speed: 175 km/h (109 mph, 94 kn)

  • Range: 265 km (165 mi, 143 nmi)

  • Service ceiling: 2,700 m (8,900 ft)

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