Yakovlev Yak-9UT

Yak-9UT-Business-End

“Stalin’s Flying Trebuchet”

Introduced in March 1945, the Yak-9UT saw limited duty in combat trials before the German surrender. But in that short time, the big-gunned Yak made an impressive showing.

 

Strengths:


Firepower – The Yak-9UT’s 37mm and twin 20mm cannons give it an incredible salvo weight of 13.2 lbs. per second.
Speed – A top speed of over 400 mph gives the Yak-9UT performance on par with the best planes of each country.

Weaknesses:


Durability – Small and light, the Yak was incapable of absorbing much combat damage.
Range – A thirsty engine and small fuel capacity limits the Yak’s range.
Ammo Load – The fast firing 37mm cannon goes through its supply of 30 rounds in a surprising hurry.

 

 

 

A further development of the Yak-9U, the Yak-9UT was designed to take advantage of the versatility of the airframe and its ability to mount a large gun between the engine cylinders. While not designed for field modification, a 23mm, 37mm, or 45mm gun could be easily substituted on the production line.

The hardest hitting of these variants was the one that used the new N-37 gun (the 45mm variant required removal of the two 20mm cannon, thus reducing the overall salvo weight). The N-37 was a smaller and lighter version of the NS-37 used in the Yak-9T. It was equipped with a highly effective muzzle break that eliminated up to 85% of recoil forces thereby eliminating the worst problem associated with large caliber gun installations.

Introduced in March 1945, the Yak-9UT saw limited duty in combat trials before the German surrender. But in that short time, the big-gunned Yak made an impressive showing. One unit had 19 encounters and shot down 27 FW-190A-8s and a Bf-109G-6 for the loss of only 2 of their own number.

 

 

 

Sources:
 Stepaniets, A.; ‘Yak’ Fighters of WWII Period; Mashinostroenie Publishing, Moscow; 1992.
Stapfer, Hans-Heiri; Yak Fighters In Action; Squadron/Signal Publications, Carrollton, TX; 1986.
Gordon, Yefim and Khazanov, Dmitri; Soviet Combat Aircraft of the Second World War Volume One: Single-Engine Fighters; Midland Publishing Limited, Leicester, England; 1998.

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