The Ilyushin Il-2 is a Soviet, single-engine low-wing and mixed structure attack aircraft with a classic tail, designed by Sergei Ilyushin from the Second World War. The flight of the prototype took place on October 2, 1939, and serial production started in 1940 and lasted until 1945. In total, as many as 36,183 copies of this great plane were created. The power unit was a 12-cylinder Mikulin AM-38 piston engine with a power of up to 1600 HP. The concept of the Il-2 aircraft was based on the desire to create a heavily armed and heavily armored attack aircraft designed to destroy the enemy's land targets and his armored vehicles. The airplanes produced in series had armor from 4 to 6mm around the engine and cockpit. The Il-2 was therefore resistant to small arms fire as well as to single hits with 20mm cannons. After improving the quality of crew training and applying new tactics, the Il-2 became an aircraft capable of wreaking havoc among the German Panzewaffe. It is no coincidence that the Germans gave him the nickname "flying death", and the designer nicknamed him "flying tank". During the war, a dozen or so versions of Ił-2 were created, the most important of which is Ił2m3. Its crew consisted of two people - a pilot and a rear gunner, the Mikulin AM-38F (1700 KM) unit was used as the engine and a self-sealing fuel tank was introduced. The aerodynamic properties were also improved. In total, 7377 machines of this version were built by 1944. Il-2 took part in all major battles on the Eastern Front - from Moscow (1941) through Stalingrad and Kursk (1942/1943), until the Berlin Operation in 1945. Technical data (version Ił-2 mod.1942): length: 11.65m, wingspan: 14.6m, maximum speed: 426km / h, practical range: 740km, practical ceiling 6200m, armament: permanent - 2 WJ cannons cal. 23mm, 2 x 7.62mm SzKAS machine guns, underslung-8 RS-82 / RS-132 unguided missiles, up to 400 kg of bombs.