Antonov A-40 KT Flying Tank

Posted: May 28, 2011 in Art Book, AVIATION, TANK, Vehicles, War Documentary

Based off of the T-60 Soviet Tank the Antonov A-40 KT barely got off the ground….If there would have been a powerful enough tow plane it may have been successful, but the planes the Soviets did have were thought to be of better service in the frontline. As well the development of larger gliders, and transports put an end to the Antonov A-40 KT.

The extraordinary KT ‘Kryl’ya tanka’ (Tank’s Wings) was a Soviet wartime design intended to supply partisans behind German lines with light armour. The Antonov design bureau quickly developed a set of biplane wings and twin-boomed tail that could be fitted to turn a T-60 tank into a glider. Only a single example was converted. On its one and only test flight the weight and drag of the KT caused the TB-3 bomber tow-plane’s engines to overheat and the glider had to be jettisoned, making a smooth landing in a rough field. The flying surfaces were dropped and the tank drove back to its base, the brave pilot/driver Sergei Anokin reporting enthusiastically about the experience. The lake of a tow-plane with sufficient power was one reason the idea fell out of official favor and was dropped.

The man who ‘flew’ the KT, Anokin, was a test pilot who had taken a quick course in tank driving. The whole operation required careful timing. Before landing, he had to start the tank’s engine and then engage the caterpillar tracks, so that the winged tank could touch down more easily. The concept was not abandoned right away, as some senior officers thought there was a future in it, but eventually it was accepted that the few available heavy towing aircraft would be better used in more conventional frontline roles.

Comments
  1. […] May 30, 2011 by bikeal Leave a Comment Based off of the T-60 Soviet Tank the Antonov A-40 KT barely got off the ground….If there would have been a powerful enough tow plane it may have been successful, but the planes the Soviets did have were thought to be of better service in the frontline. As well the development of larger gliders, and transports put an end to the Antonov A-40 KT. The extraordinary KT 'Kryl'ya tanka' (Tank's Wings) was a Soviet wartime design intended to supply pa … Read More […]

  2. Geoff Stone says:

    Check out “The Chief Culprit” by Viktor Suvorov. The real reason for the development of the flying tank was to support a first strike attack by the Soviet Union again Germany. The idea was abandoned when Hitler launched his preemptive attack on the Soviet Union.

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