The Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (Japanese peregrine falcon) is a Japanese, single-engine, metal, semi-shell fighter in a low wing design from the Second World War. The USAF nicknamed this machine Oscar. The flight of the prototype took place in January 1939, and the entry into the line units in 1941. The Ki-43 Hayabusa was the most important and most numerous fighter in the Japanese Air Force during the entire war. In the years 1939-1945, three main versions of the aircraft were created, each of which had several revisions. The first production series is the Ki-43-I powered by the 950 HP Nakajima Ha-25 engine or the Ha-25 Type 99 version with 980 HP. This Ki-43 model turned out to be in the period 1941-1942 a machine definitely superior to Allied planes, for example Brewster Buffalo or P-40. At the same time, it was commonly confused with the famous A6M Zero. The next development version is the Ki-43-II with a new, more powerful version of the Ha-25 engine, with makeshift cabin armor and self-sealing fuel tanks. The outline of the wing and engine silencers were also changed. Its production started in 1942. The latest version is the Ki-43-III, powered by a Nakajima Ha-115-II Sakae engine with a capacity of 1230KM. It entered production in December 1944 and was used to defend the Japanese islands against Allied air strikes and for suicide missions as a kamikaze plane. All versions of the Ki-43 were liked very much by pilots due to their excellent flight characteristics and, above all, excellent maneuverability. Almost every Army Air Force ace has flown the Ki-43 at some point in his career, and moreover has had aerial victories with it. One of the best Ki-43 pilots was Satoshi Anabuki, who had 39 confident victories throughout his career. Technical data (version Ki-43-II): length: 8.92 m, wingspan: 10.84 m, height: 3.27 m, maximum speed: 548 km / h, maximum range: 1760 km, maximum ceiling 11200 m, armament: fixed- 2 Type 1 machine guns, caliber 12.7 mm, underslung - 2 bombs 30 kg or 2 fuel tanks, 200 liters each.
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