Chronicle of war:

Sultan Amet-Khan
Sultan Amet-Khan20.10.1920 - 1.2.1971

Sultan Amet-Khan is a squadron commander, assistant commander of the 9th Odessa Red Banner Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment of the 6th Guards Fighter Aviation Division.

He was born on October 20, 1920 in Alupka (today - in the city of Yalta, Crimea) in a working class family. His father was an ethnic Lak (originally from the village of Tsovkra, Dagestan), mother - Crimean Tatar. He was a member of the CPSU (B) / Communist Party from 1942. In 1937 S. Amet-Khan completed seven classes and enrolled in Railroad Factory Trade Apprenticeship in Simferopol. After graduation he worked as a mechanic in the railway depot in Simferopol. Simultaneously, he studied at the flying club, which he successfully graduated in 1938.

He joined the Red Army in February 1939. In 1940, having graduated from the 1st Kachin Red Banner Military Aviation School named after A.F. Myasnikov in junior lieutenant grade, served in Bobruisk, and from the summer of 1940 he was a pilot with the 4th Fighter Regiment (the Odessa Military District), based around Chisinau, flying the I-15 and the I-153. In Moldova, he faced the top of the Great Patriotic War ...

Already on June 22, 1941 a junior pilot of the 4th Fighter Regiment, Sultan Amet-Khan made several sorties on the I-153 fighter to explore and attack the advancing enemy. After this, the famous pilot’s operation record went in the sky of the South Ukraine. In autumn 1941, S. Amet-Khan covered by fire Rostov-on-Don. In winter 1942, the regiment was re-learned to Hurricanes Hawkers.

In March 1942, the 4th Fighter Regiment was part of Yaroslavl air defense. Here, in the sky over the ancient Russian city, Sultan Amet-Khan claimed his first aerial victory. On May 31, 1942, having expended the entire weapons load, he rammed a Junkers Ju-88, hitting its left wing on the underside. On impact, his Hawker Hurricane stuck in Junkers-88 catching fire. Fortunately, the pilot managed to escape from the cockpit of his plane and jump out of the falling wreckages on a parachute. For the feat Sultan Amet-Khan was awarded the nominal watch and subsequently elected as Honorary Citizen of the city of Yaroslavl.

In the summer of 1942, S. Amet-Khan fought near Voronezh on the Yak-1, and from August 1942 – was involved in the Battle of Stalingrad on the Yak-7B. Here, in the fiery skies of Stalingrad, he proved himself as an acknowledged ace, and was included in the ad hoc group formed to counter the German aces. Except S. Amet-Khan, the group included some other recognized aces: future double Heroes of the Soviet Union, V.D. Lavrinenkov, A.K. Ryazanov, I.N. Stepanenko; and future Heroes of the Soviet Union, I.G. Borisov and B.N. Yeremin. S. Amet-Khan was shot down near Stalingrad, and escaped again with the help of a parachute.

In October 1942, Sultan Amet-Khan became commander of the 3rd squadron of the 9th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment, as part of which he fought until the end of the war.

After relearning to Aircobra, he participated in the liberation of Rostov-on-Don, in the fierce air battles in the Kuban region, in the release of Taganrog, Melitopol, and the Crimea.

The title of Hero of the Soviet Union and the Order of Lenin and the Gold Star medal (№ 1136) squadron commander of the 9th Odessa Red Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment, Guard Captain Sultan Amet-Khan was conferred by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on August 24, 1943.

In January 1944, together with his wingman, Hero of the Soviet Union Ivan Borisov, S. Amet-Khan forced to land German Fizler-Storch communication aircraft. After a brief acquaintance with the aircraft’s cabin he took a flight. After relaxing in the summer of 1944 and the transition to the new La-7 fighter, S. Amet-Khan fought in East Prussia, and was involved in the capture of Berlin.

His last dogfight assistant commander of the regiment in the service of an air-rifle, Guard Maj. Sultan Amet-Khan, held on April 29, 1945 over Tempelhof airport, having knocked the Focke-Wulf-190.

The second Gold Star medal (№ 66), assistant commander of the air-rifle Service of the 9th Odessa Red Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment of the 6th Guards Fighter Aviation Division (the 1st Air Army) Guard Maj. Amet-Khan Sultan was awarded by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on June 29, 1945.

During the war, he made 603 sorties (70 of them – to attack the troops and equipment of the enemy), conducted 150 air battles, in which personally shot down 30 enemy planes, and in a group – 19.

After the war, by the order of the Supreme Commander, all aces were sent to study at the academy. In August 1945 S. Amet-Khan became a student of the Air Force Academy in Monino. Education was very hard, and he felt a lack of education. In early 1946, the pilot filed a report, with the honest words, “Soberly weighing the level of my knowledge, I see no possibility for further study. So please dismiss me as I am not sure to endure five years of study at the academy” His report was satisfied, and in April 1946, Lt. Col. Sultan Amet-Khan was transferred to the reserve.

However, the pilot could not live without the blue and therefore was out to return to the flight profession. For a long time he did not succeed. Blame was his nationality (in every questionnaire he always indicated that he was Tatar), because at the time the Crimean Tatars were deported from their homes and charged with aiding and abetting the Nazis. But thanks to the support and assistance of military friends, in February 1947 S. Amet-Khan became a test pilot in the Flight Research Institute.

In a short time he became one of the best testers. In 1949 he was granted the third grade test pilot, in January 1950 – the second, and in September 1952 Sultan Amet-Khan became the 1st grade test pilot. He successfully performed a variety of tests.

In 1947-1949 S. Amet-Khan, S. Anokhin and N. Rybko tested the M-1 (with a straight wing) and the M-2 (with forward-swept wing at 30°) flying laboratories – P.Tsybin’s structures. Flying Labs were towed to a height, and after uncoupling were thrown out into a dive (angle – 45°) with the switching on a gunpowder engine (15 seconds). Launch of gliders was carried out on a special cart, dumped after taking-off, and landing – on the landing skid. During the tests, the LL-2 achieved speed equal to M = 0.87 (M – Mach number). These flights at transonic speeds facilitated exploring extensive experimental material on measurements of aerodynamic characteristics, the pressure distribution on the wing and tail. During the flights, research on moving shock waves along the wing was also conducted.

On July 22, 1948, a truck assy was not come off the LL-1. It was a critical situation: the pilot could not land at the truck as it was not equipped with brakes, and the flying laboratory could bundle beyond the runway. However, S. Amet-Khan biting the bullet completed a successful landing. He landed the plane at the beginning of the runway and continued to attempt to reset the truck. At the very end of the runway he managed to do it. The truck drove off further, and the plane was on the runway.

In 1949, S. Amet-Khan with A.Yakimov tested a system of automatic refueling method “from wing to wing”, which was developed by a staff of FRI, V.Vasyanin and I. Shelest. In June 1949, together with the I. Shelest, S. Amet-Khan conducted the first in the country fully automated aerial refueling of the Tu-2.

In late 1949, Y. Vernikov and S. Amet-Khan performed the first flight on the experimental I-320 (“P-2”), all-weather fighter-interceptor of EDO named after A. Mikoyan, and in 1949-1950 they conducted its first factory testing.

In 1951-53 S. Amet-Khan with S. Anokhin, F. Burtsev and V. Pavlov held complete testing of the KS (“Kometa-3”) – a manned analog of glider-bomb. The aerodynamic prototype (called K) was designed for testing glider-bomb KS of type “the air – the ship” in manned mode. The analogue was suspended under the Tu-4KS; the mother ship ascended 3,000 meters, and then detached the aerodynamic prototype. Already in free fall the automatic switched on engine, and the glider-bomb flew over the target. During the tests on the subject, S. Amet-Khan made the first K flight off the land (on January 4, 1951), first start from the mother ship (on May 1951) and a large number of flights with detaching from the mother ship. After a cutaway, a glider-bomb’s engine did not start at once, and only because of Amet-Khan’s endurance, who didn’t leave the plane and continued to try to start the engine (which were crowned with success only at the ground), the experimental car was saved. For conducting these tests, Sultan Amet-Khan was awarded the Stalin Prize of the 2nd degree (later became known as the USSR State Prize).

In 1957-1958 S. Amet-Khan, V. Pavlov and V. Trofimov carried out similar work on an airplane simulator, the SM-20, designed to test the equipment of cruise missiles – the K-20. During the tests, the SM-20 was hanged to the Tu-95K.

In 1953, S. Amet-Khan conducted some flights to study the stability of the controllability of the aircraft at supersonic speeds. These flights were performed on the SR-10 with adjustable slats and turning stabilizer that was created on the basis of the MiG-17.

S. Amet-Khan carried out many flights to test assisted escape systems from various planes. On November 12, 1958, at the time of ejection seat tests for the Su-7 and the Su-9 by test-paratrooper V. Golovin, gunpowder cartridge of the catapult firing mechanism exploded on the MiG-15UTI. The fuel tank was broken, both cabins were filled with fuel, and there was a threat of fire. V. Golovin could not leave the plane due to deformation of the ejection seat. Therefore, S. Amet-Khan took a courageous decision to land the plane.

The plane was landed perfectly, and the companion’s life was saved.

On April 7, 1959 Sultan Amet-Khan made the first flight on the NM-1 experimental aircraft designed by P. Tsybin, and then in 1959-1960 together with R. Zakharov tested it.

A great place among all the testing activities of S. Amet-Khan took the aircraft engines’ tests on the various LL planes.

On September 23, 1961 S. Amet Khan was awarded the title of the Honorary test-pilot of the USSR (№ 38). During flight operations, he mastered about 100 types of aircraft; his total flying experience was 4237 hours.

He lived in the town of Zhukovsky, Moscow region. On February 1, 1971 Sultan Amet-Khan was killed when performing a test flight on the Tu-16, designed to test a new jet engine. He was buried in the city-hero of Moscow at Novodevichy cemetery.

Twice Hero of the Soviet Union, Sultan Amet-Khan was awarded three Orders of Lenin, four Orders of the Red Banner, the Order of Alexander Nevsky, the 1st Class Order of the Great Patriotic War, the Red Star, the Sign of Honor and six medals.

Streets in Alupka, Volgograd, Zhukovsky, Makhachkala, Dagestan mountain peak and Makhachkala airport are named after him.

Bronze busts of the famous pilot were installed: in Alupka, in the village of Tsovkra in Makhachkala – in the avenue named after him, and also opposite the terminal building.
 



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