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Polikarpov I-16

Single-Seat, Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter

Polikarpov I-16

Single-Seat, Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The I-16, though outclassed by its contemporaries, played many an important role throughout World War Two.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: Soviet Union
YEAR: 1935
MANUFACTURER(S): Polikarpov OKB - Soviet Union
PRODUCTION: 7,005
OPERATORS: China; Spain; Soviet Union
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Polikarpov I-16 model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 1
LENGTH: 19.82 feet (6.04 meters)
WIDTH: 29.13 feet (8.88 meters)
HEIGHT: 7.91 feet (2.41 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 3,252 pounds (1,475 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 4,542 pounds (2,060 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Shvetsov M-62 air-cooled radial engine developing 1,000 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 304 miles-per-hour (490 kilometers-per-hour; 265 knots)
RANGE: 373 miles (600 kilometers; 324 nautical miles)
CEILING: 31,070 feet (9,470 meters; 5.88 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 2,790 feet-per-minute (850 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



STANDARD:
4 x 7.62mm machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mountings.

OPTIONAL:
6 x Air-to-surface rockets
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• TsKB-12 - Prototype Model Designation fitted with M-22 radial piston engine generating 480hp.
• TsKB-12bis - Second Prototype Model Designation with improved performance and uprated Wright SR-1820-F3 Cyclone powerplant.
• I-16 Type 1 - Base Pre-Production Model Designation fitted with M-22; 10 produced.
• I-16 Type 4 - Fitted with imported-Cyclone powerplant.
• I-16 Type 5 - M-25 700hp license-built Cyclone powerplant; improved armor.
• I-16 Type 6 - Initial Major Production Variant fitted with M-25A 730hp powerplant.
• I-16 Type 10 - Fitted with M-25V 750hp powerplant; 4 x 7.62mm machine guns.
• I-16 Type 17 - Provision for six 82mm rockets; 2 x 20mm cannons in place of standard machine guns; reinforced structure throughout.
• I-16 Type 18 - M-62 radial piston engine generating 920hp; 4 x 7.62mm machine guns.
• I-16 Type 24 - M-62 OR M-63 radial piston engines delivering 1,000hp and 1,,100hp respectively; reinforced wing elements; 4 x 7.62mm machine guns.
• I-16 Type 28 - Fitted with M-63 radial piston engine.
• I-16 Type 30 - Fitted with M-63 radial piston engine.
• I-16 SPB - Dive Bomber Variant
• I-16UTI - Dual-Control Trainer Model


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Polikarpov I-16 Single-Seat, Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter.  Entry last updated on 8/19/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Polikarpov I-16 fighter proved to be quite the little aggressor before and throughout the Second World War. Initially seeing combat in the Spanish Civil War, the system would go on to see more during the Soviet invasion of Finland and the German invasion of the Soviet Union. In the end, though outclassed by better performing and more advanced aircraft, the system continued to provide support as late as 1943.

The I-16 looked very much the part of a racing airplane with an open-air cockpit, large radial piston engine housing and short stubby fuselage design. Couple that speed inherent in a small aircraft with a large engine with an array of 4 x 7.62mm machine guns, cannons or rockets and you have yourself a decent defender and / or aggressor airplane.

The I-16 saw extensive service for the Soviet Union throughout the war, be it in the war of aggression with Finland or the defense of the homeland versus the Third Reich. China used the type extensively in its campaign against Japanese aggression in the Far East and the system would bode very well for itself in the end, with production totaling just over 7,000 units.




By 1943, the system was deemed too impractical to continue to be fielded, considering the aircraft was being outclassed by any new fighter being developed around it, that the system was withdrawn from frontline Soviet service. Other variants existed including a torpedo dive bomber and dual-control trainer, along with improved models along the way.

In the end, the I-16 proved to be an exceptional fighter for a time - in the early years of the war at least - and featured great handling, nimbleness associated with small size and decent firepower at the point of attack.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 400mph
Lo: 200mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (304mph).

    Graph average of 300 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LDN
LDN
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MSK
MSK
 
  TKY
TKY
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the Polikarpov I-16's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
7005
7005

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue