Modelsvit Aircraft 1/72 Mikoyan I3U (I420) Soviet Interceptor Aircraft
The Mikoyan-Gurevich I-3 was the first of three closely related fighter prototype programs developed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich design bureau in the Soviet Union in the mid/late 1950s - starting with the I-3, continuing with the I-7 and finally evolving into the I-75. On several occasions airframes were re-built and/or re-used both within a program or in a succeeding program. All the aircraft in the I-3 program were affected by delays in the development of the Klimov VK-3 turbojet engine, its cancellation and replacement by the Lyulka AL-7F turbojet engine. The I-3U was modified from the unfinished I-3; the fuselage was stretched 93 cm (from 12.27 m to 13.20 m), the nose redesigned to accommodate the Uragan-1 fire control system (hence the U in the designation) above the inlet and an Almaz search radar with a search/track range of 17 km was fitted in the cone centered in the inlet. Armament consisted of two 30 mm Nudelman-Richter NR-30 cannons with symmetrical auto ranging connected to the radar. In addition to the fire control system Mikoyan-Gurevich also used, for the first time, titanium alloys in the rear fuselage where high temperatures were expected. The conversion from I-3 to I-3U was completed in 1956. Flight testing took place on an irregular basis in 1956-1958 due to engine flaws and frequent modifications. A total of 34 test flights were carried out, with design bureau test pilot Georgiy Mossolov reaching a speed of 1960 km/h at attitude on one flight. The program was cancelled on June 17, 1958.