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Sukhanov Diskoplan-2
Sukhanov Diskoplan-2
A 1960 version of the Discoplan 2 aircraft's structure appears to have been based on a wooden or steel truss covered with lacquered canvas -- standard lightplane and glider construction. Apparently the disc-shaped vertical "fin" was designed to revolve on a horizontal axis like a bicycle wheel -- possibly to provide some sort of gyroscopic stabilization to the aircraft's control system via a system of cables and struts.
The construction was carried out by Lavochkin. The circular wing has neither ribs or longerons. The light alloy edging around the perimeter of the “wheel” serves only to give a streamlined form to the tip. It is controlled by ailerons and rudder.
Reported in March 1963, the circular wing Discoplan II was successfully tested on an airfield near Moscow in the previous Autumn.
The Discoplan-II was piloted by Vladimir Ivanov, a glider expert.
One of the main features of the machine discovered during tests was the aerodynamic effect of the ‘air cushion’. Owing to the proximity of the wing to the ground, and thanks to its circular form, the influence of the cushion on the landing and take-off characteristics proved most beneficial. At a height of 1.5-2m / 59-79 in Discoplan-II automatically stabilised both in the lateral and transverse directions and could fly without the pilot touching the controls. In gliding down to land the pilot also felt how the Discoplan was “padded” by the air cushion. Thus, the landing was also of an automatic.
Wingspan: 5 m / 16 ft 5 in
Wing area: 20 sq.m
Empty weight: 240 kg
Gross weight: 240 kg / 529 lb
Wing loading: 12 kg/m2
Seats: 1

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