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The Yakovlev Yak-3 was a fighter used by the Soviet Union during World War II


The Yak-3 was one of the smaller and lighter aircraft of the Second World war[1]. By having a powerful engine, combined with a light airframe, the Yak-3 was a highly manoeuvrable fighter.



The design of the Yak-3 started in 1941, with the I-30 prototype. The I-30 was an all-metal fighter, but it suffered from a bad power to weight ratio. This eventually led to the abandonment of the project. A while later, in 1943, the Yakovlev design bureau made improvements to the already proven Yak-1. This new variant was a lighter version, with smaller wing area and further aerodynamic improvements, it was called the Yak-1M. A notable feature was the relocation of the oil cooler from under the nose to the wing root. The second prototype of the Yak-1M was so good that the test pilots recommended to put it into production and replace the Yak-1 and Yak-7.

Operational history

The Yak-3 began to make it's way to front line battlegroups in 1944.


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