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Lavochkin La-7


Single-Seat, Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter Aircraft (1944)


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The Lavochkin La-7 prop-powered fighter appeared as an improved La-5 in the later years of World War 2.



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 07/30/2020 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.
The Lavochkin La-7 was an improved variant of the preceding La-5 form. It incorporated a new Shvetsov engine, uprated to increased the mount's maximum speed though, on the whole, it remained largely the same aircraft with a new designation. Other subtle changes were incorporated based on combat actions with the La-7 and first flight of a modified prototype was in February of 1944. Service entry then followed rather quickly in September of 1944. The La-7 led a relatively short operational service life though, being retired during 1950 - the jet age now taking hold. Production of La-7 fighters numbered 5,753 units.

As completed, the La-7 sported similar lines to the original La-5. The cockpit was heavily framed and situated at amidships. The mainplanes were set under and ahead of the cockpit floor. The engine was shrouded over in a rounded cowling with a large spinner capping the three-bladed propeller unit. The tail was tapered and formed the curved vertical fin which mounted mid-set tailplanes on either side. The fuselage spine was only slightly raised to degrade vision to the rear but required for the internal volume it allowed engineers. The undercarriage remained a tail-dragger arrangement with two main legs and a tailwheel - all retractable.

Power was through a single Shvetsov ASh-82FN 14-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine of 1,650 horsepower. This drove a three-bladed VISh-105V-4 series propeller blade assembly at front. Maximum speed reached 411 miles per hour of late-war models and ranges out to 415 miles. Service ceiling was 34,300 feet and rate-of-climb a strong 3,095 feet-per-minute.

Standard armament began as 2 x 20mm ShVAK cannons with 200 rounds afforded each gun. This could be substituted with 3 x 20mm Berezin B-20 series cannons with 100 rounds per gun. As with the La-5 before it, the La-7 retained performance qualities in the low-to-medium altitude range which meant it a stable platform for the fighter-bomber role as well as a fighter. For this role, the La-7 could also be outfitted with air-to-surface rockets and up to 440lbs of conventional drop ordnance.

Beyond the Soviet Air Force, the La-7 was only utilized by the Czechoslovakian Air Force.

The only definitive production variant became the La-7UTI which served as a trainer model. This incorporated a second seat for the instructor at the expense of internal volume. 584 of the type were produced into 1947. Other one-off variants included the La-7TK used in testing a turbosupercharger development and the La-7R to test a rocket motor propulsion system. The La-7PVRD was similar in scope and used in testing of a pair of ramjet installations under the wings. Another one-off model became the La-7/M-71 which fitted a Shvetsov M-71 engine during 1944.

Specifications



Service Year
1944

Origin
Soviet Union national flag graphic
Soviet Union

Status
RETIRED
Not in Service.
Crew
1

Production
5,753
UNITS


Lavochkin - Soviet Union
National flag of Czechia National flag of the Soviet Union Czechoslovakia; Soviet Union
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Air-to-Air Combat, Fighter
General ability to actively engage other aircraft of similar form and function, typically through guns, missiles, and/or aerial rockets.
Ground Attack (Bombing, Strafing)
Ability to conduct aerial bombing of ground targets by way of (but not limited to) guns, bombs, missiles, rockets, and the like.
Close-Air Support (CAS)
Developed to operate in close proximity to active ground elements by way of a broad array of air-to-ground ordnance and munitions options.


Length
28.2 ft
(8.60 m)
Width/Span
32.2 ft
(9.80 m)
Height
8.3 ft
(2.54 m)
Empty Wgt
5,512 lb
(2,500 kg)
MTOW
7,385 lb
(3,350 kg)
Wgt Diff
+1,874 lb
(+850 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base Lavochkin La-7 production variant)
Installed: 1 x Shvetsov ASh-82FN 14-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine developing 1,650 horsepower.
Max Speed
411 mph
(661 kph | 357 kts)
Ceiling
34,285 ft
(10,450 m | 6 mi)
Range
413 mi
(665 km | 1,232 nm)
Rate-of-Climb
3,095 ft/min
(943 m/min)


♦ MACH Regime (Sonic)
Sub
Trans
Super
Hyper
HiHyper
ReEntry
RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030


(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the base Lavochkin La-7 production variant. Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database. View aircraft by powerplant type)
STANDARD:
2 x 20mm ShVAK cannons OR 3 x 20mm Berezin B-20 cannons.

OPTIONAL:
Up to 440lbs of external ordnance including rockets and conventional drop bombs.


Supported Types


Graphical image of an aircraft automatic cannon
Graphical image of aircraft aerial rockets
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition


(Not all ordnance types may be represented in the showcase above)
Hardpoint Mountings: 4


La-7 - Base Series Designation; definitive production form; improved La-5.
La-7UTI - Two-seat trainer; 584 exampes
La-7TK - Turbosupercharger testbed; single example.
La-7R - Rocket engine testbed; single example.
La-7PVRD - Ramjet engine testbed; single example.
La-7/M-71 - M-71 engine testbed; single example.


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