Beriev Be-6 ‘Madge’

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Beriev Be-6 ‘Madge’

Berichtdoor Tandorini » 25 aug 2009, 20:08

- Beriev Be-6 ‘Madge’ of the Soviet navy, with a MAD ’stinger’ aft of its tail. -

The initial production version of the Beriev Be-6 had a retractable ventral radome (seen in the lowered position) and barbetted twin cannon in the tail.

Development of a large maritime reconnaissance and bombing flying-boat was initiated by the Beriev design bureau in 1945, and the Beriev LL-143 prototype flew for the first time in 1947. An all metal high-wing monoplane, it was powered by two 1492-kW (2,000-hp) Shvetsov ASh-72 radial engines. Armament comprised twin NS-23 23-mm cannon in a tail turret (behind the twin fins and rudders) and similar provision in a remotely controlled dorsal barbette. A single NS-23 cannon was installed in the bow turret.

The LL-143 was developed into the Beriev Be-6 production aircraft, the first example of which was flown by M.I. Tsepilov in 1949. It differed from the prototype by having more sophisticated equipment, which included a retractable radome aft of the second step, and a redesigned nose without cannon armament.

Flying boat was capable to accomplish wide variety of missions:

# long-range maritime reconnaissance;

# coastal and supply lines patrol;

# torpedo/bombing strikes;

# navy seals support (40 with equipment);

# laying mine fields;

# transport operations;

# ice patrol

Be-6 equipment includes autopilot, blind flight/landing equipment and friend-foe identification system, in addition to standard navigation, photographic and radio equipment. Ventral retractable search radar was enclosed in a foam-plastic fairing.

Reliability of aircraft is augmented by eight hull sections which may be sealed individually, preventing from Be-6 from sinking in case of combat damage. Fixed under wing floats are also divided into four sealed volumes each. Strong airframe allows continuous taxiing on 2m waves.

Twenty-two self-sealing soft fuel tanks are located in the wing, with access from below. De-icing system includes hot air, liquid and electric heating of the windshield. Wing and tail leading edges (as well as air intakes) are warmed up with hot air from four gasoline burners. Ethanol is used on propeller blades. Mechanical deicers are installed on windshield and pressure sensors. Distilled water is used to remove salt deposits from the windshield.

Be-6 is capable to sustain horizontal flight at 2500m with one engine shot off. Servotrimmers are used to reduce control load in this situation.

At a later stage the tail gun position was replaced by MAD (magnetic anomaly detection) equipment. The Be-6, to which NATO allocated the codename ‘Madge’, carried a heavy offensive load comprising various combinations of mines, depth charges or torpedoes on under wing pylons outboard of the engines.

Be-6s operated patrol, maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine duties until the early 1970s, and a few remained in service on transport or fishery patrol duties into the late 1970s. Some aircraft ended service as civil unarmed transports in Arctic regions.


Beriev Be-6

Type: maritime reconnaissance and bombing flying-boat

Powerplant: two 1715-kW (2,300-hp) Shvetsov ASh-73TK radial piston engines

2× Shvetsov ASh-73TK radial engines, 1,800 kW (2,400 hp) each

Performance: maximum speed 415km/h (258mph) at 2400m (7,875ft); service ceiling 6100m

(20,015ft); maximum range 4800km (2,983 miles)

Weights: empty equipped 18827kg (41,506lb); normal take-off 23456kg (51,711lb)

Dimensions: span 33m (108ft 4in); length 23.5m (77ft 1in); height 7.64 m (25ft 1in); wing area 120m2 (1,291.71 sq ft)

Armament: five (later four) 23 mm (0.906 in) Nudelman-Rikhter NR-23 cannon in 3 remotely-controlled turrets

# one in the nose N-2 installation with 100 to 200 rounds;

# two in dorsal DT-B8 turret with 500 to 550 rounds;

# two in tail Il-K6-53Be turret, 2×225 rounds;

General ordnance, or a combination of following:

# 16*OFAB-100

# 8*FAB-500

# 2*FAB-1500

# 2*1000kg (2,200lb) torpedoes

# 8*AMD-500 mines
NEC JACTANTIA NEC METU ("zonder woorden, zonder vrees")

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