“Arsenyev Aviation company “Progress” named after Sazykin” is one of the largest enterprises of aerospace industry in Russia. The main pride of the company is combat helicopters Ka-52 “Alligator” developed by the Kamov helicopter plant and produced for the Ministry of Defence. Let’s see how these legendary vehicles are made.
“Arsenyev Aviation company “Progress” named after N. I. Sazykin is located in Arsenyev.
Airplanes produced by the plant have been repeatedly shown at international air shows and arming exhibitions.
The plant starts working at 8 am and already at 8.30 no empty parking space can be found. More than 6000 people work at the plant.
The production area of the plant is 290 000 m2.
In general the plant has 30 departments. Let’s start from the foundry engineering department.
This department has a unique Italian automated line for production of moulds and fillers of aluminium, magnesium and iron-steel casting that has no analogs in Russia.
The leading technology allows to increase dimensional accuracy of casting, its physical characteristics, also lets produce moulds for aluminium, steel, iron on one and the same equipment.
Till lately the foundry facilities of “Progress” were located in different buildings. All this equipment had been used for 30 years and had been considerably worn out. Some part of the complex had been repaired or simply hadn’t worked. So they’d had to make moulds for casting manually by ramming soil mixture. It had been a very laborious process. When they started using new complex, the moulds were made not from clay, sand or soil but from special cold-hardening mixtures. It lets increase dimensional accuracy of casting, their density and elasticity. The technology makes it possible to produce moulds for magnesium, aluminium, steel and cast iron on one and the same equipment.
Engineering shop of program processing of details 1933 m2 in area.
Very accurate mechanical machines with program control are intended for processing large details and units, they perform all operations: boring, turning, milling ones.
Machines CTX 300 Alpha-D made by a German company DMG.
These machines process all materials used at the plant. They obtained a program of managing programs virtual control “Vericut”.
The holy place of the plant – assembly shop.
From thousands of details they create a helicopter.
On October, 29th, 2008 in Arsenyev, the Primorye region, “Progress” plant launched serial production of combat helicopters Ka-52 “Alligator”.
They say that Air Force will have to get 12 units till 2015.
Ka-52 development started back in 1994 and it made its first flight in 1997. Though serial production was postponed due to some financial difficulties.
Ka-52 may conduct operations day and night, in bad weather conditions either, applying all means of destruction. The command and recce vehicle Ка-52 allows to increase efficiency of grouped military operations. Besides, Ka-52 can be used as a training helicopter as well.
During the production they plan to improve the initial characteristics of Ka-52 by means of more powerful engines (2500 -2700 hp).
Today “Progress” is preparing ship-board type of Ka-52 for production, Mi-34S1 – light helicopter, Ka-62 – middleweight multi-purpose helicopter.
Final assembly shop
The process of building a helicopter takes about 9 months: from the first details to the first tests.
Multi-purpose all-weather combat helicopter Ka-52 “Alligator” is a two-seater modification of Ka-50.
Helicopter Ka-52, as opposed to its predecessor, has a wider fuselage nose and a cabin for two, where catapult pilot seats are located “side by side”. Both pilots with no restriction may control the flight. The cabin is armoured.
The helicopter has a unique manoeuvrability which helps to perform complex tasks in small air space and occupy an advantageous attacking position in the shortest time.
The helicopter has a rapid-fire movable gun and other nice weapons. According to its combat power it’s not inferior to Ka-50 and is superior compared to all other existing combat helicopters. The total weight of destructive means on the underwing holders is 2000 kg.
The test prototype of Ka-52 is made on basis of “Black Shark” for 85%. The helicopter became 1 ton heavier but the constructors did much not to lose combat abilities of Ka-50. Quite the opposite: two-seated Ka-52 has more abilities to fight at night, work in a group, in constant contact with land command centres. It’s the first helicopter in the world practice that can fight an air enemy.
Testing is the final stage, of course. It’s the flight-test centre.
In 2006 they decided to found a Far Estern Aviation Museum in Arsenyev.
One of the exhibits – P-270 “Moskit” – a Soviet/Russian supersonic low-altitude anti-ship cruise missile with a straight-flow air breathing propulsion system.
More familiar Mi-24 that participated in armed conflicts in Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Chad, Iraq.
Motor sled A-30
It has no transmission, it moves with help of a pushing windmill driven by a combustion engine.
Since 1920s the motor sled has been used for military purposes and for the North development. In 1962 “Progress” started production of motor sleds “Ka-30″ applying modern technologies of that time. Later they were produced in Komsomolsk-on-Amur.