Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Vladimir Sergeyevich Ilyushin 1927-

Vladimir Ilyushin was born on 31 March, 1927, the eldest son of leading Soviet aircraft designer Sergei Vladimirovich Ilyushin. Ilyushin's father was a favoured member of the Soviet establishment. It may be noted that aircraft designer Tupolev blamed Ilyushin's father for the denunciation that sent Tupolev to a special engineering prison in the Soviet Gulag in 1937. Vladimir's ambition was to be a test pilot of leading-edge, fast aircraft. He fulfilled this in an illustrious career that won him the highest state prizes and military promotions several years ahead of the norm throughout his life. In his spare time he was active in rugby and collecting automobiles (among them a 1966 Chevrolet Bel Air). He was Deputy Chief Designer and Lead Test Pilot for the Sukhoi design bureau until his retirement. Over his life he flew 145 different types of aircraft and made a number of important first and record flights. The following are the known and public highlights of his life:
  • 1952 - Completed qualification as a Soviet test pilot
  • 1953 - Began work at LII state test flight centre
  • 1957 - Began working for the Sukhoi design bureau, first as part of the test team for the T-3 (Su-7 supersonic fighter prototype)
  • 1957, September 10 - made first flight of Su-9 production aircraft
  • 1959, July 14 - Achieved world record altitude of 28,857 m aboard the T-431, a modified Su-9 fighter
  • 1960 - Awarded prize as Hero of the Soviet Union
  • 1961 - Named Merited Master of Sport of the USSR
  • 1962, September 7- Achieved record sustained altitude of 21,270 m aboard the T-431
  • 1965, June - Made first flight of T-6, prototype of the Su-24
  • 1966 - Named Merited Test Pilot of the USSR
  • 1966, August 2 - Made first flight of S-22I, prototype of Su-17
  • 1966-1967 - Worked as instructor at Chkalov test pilot school (cosmonaut Titov among his students)
  • 1971 - Named Deputy Chief Designer of Sukhoi and Lead Test Pilot
  • 1972, August 22 - Made first flight of T-4 tri-sonic bomber prototype
  • 1973 - Promoted to Lieutenant-General of the Air Force
  • 1975, February 22 - Major-General Sukhoi made the first flight of the T-8, prototype of the Su-25
  • 1976, Named Lenin Prize Laureate
  • 1977, May 29 -Made first flight of T-10, predecessor of the Su-27
  • 1981, April 20 - Made first flight of T-10S, prototype of the Su-27