Between World Wars, History, World War II

Polikarpov I-16 Soviet Fighter

Polikarpov I-16 Soviet Fighter

The Polikarpov I-16 was a Soviet fighter aircraft that gained prominence during the Spanish Civil War and World War II. Here’s a brief overview:

  1. Design and Development:
    • Designed by Nikolai Polikarpov, the I-16 was the world’s first low-wing cantilever monoplane with retractable landing gear to achieve operational status.
    • The aircraft had an innovative gull-wing design, where the wings were positioned higher on the fuselage.
  2. Operational History:
    • The I-16 played a significant role in the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) where it earned the nickname “Rata” (Rat) from the Spanish Republicans.
    • It was the primary Soviet fighter at the beginning of World War II and was used extensively during the early stages of the conflict.
  3. Key Features:
    • The I-16 was known for its agility and good rate of climb, making it a formidable adversary in dogfights.
    • Armed with various combinations of machine guns and cannons, it could carry a range of weaponry depending on the model.
  4. Variants:
    • Several variants of the I-16 were produced with different engines and armament configurations. Some variants included the I-16 Type 5, I-16 Type 10, and I-16 Type 24.
  5. Legacy:
    • While the I-16 was effective in the early stages of World War II, it became outclassed by more advanced aircraft as the war progressed.
    • Despite its eventual obsolescence, the I-16’s legacy is significant as it represented a milestone in aircraft design and had a major impact on the development of subsequent Soviet aircraft.

The Polikarpov I-16 remains an important part of aviation history as one of the pioneering designs in the field of military aviation.

Photo: Polikarpov I-16 Soviet Fighter.
Date: unknown.

Original photo dimensions: 4960×3500 pixels, 300dpi.
This photo available for Wall Art Print without watermarks.

If you know more info about this photograph, please mention it in the comments.

© Exclusive photo from the private archive of Dmitry Linevich.

Wall Art with this photo

If you’re interested in wall art featuring this photo, please fill out the form, and we will provide you with a price offer within 1-2 business days.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Leave a Reply