Archive digitization



Aviation and Diplomacy

Frank Piasecki

NATO 1949-2009 Projekt ekspozycji w Muzeum Lotnictwa Polskiego w Krakowie



Polish Aviation Museum

31-864 Kraków,
al. Jana Pawła II 39
phone: (12) 640 99 60,
(12) 642 40 70
e-mail: info@muzeumlotnictwa.pl

a cultural institution of the Malopolska Region

Małopolska – Kraków Region


Patronage

Kraków Airport







Glider: IS-A Salamandra

IS-A Salamandra
Poland
intermediate glider
1946



  • Technical data


Span 12.48 m (40 ft 11 in)
Length 6.48 m (21 ft 3 in)
Wing area 19.9 sq m (214 sq ft)
Empty weight 140 kg (308 lb)
Take-off weight 225 kg (496 lb)
Glide ratio 19.5 at 54 kph (34mph, 29 kt) optimum speed
Sink rate 0.8 mps (2.6 fps) at 48 kph (30mph, 26 kt) economy speed
Minimum speed 43 kph (27 mph, 23 kt)
Max. diving speed 150 kph (93 mph, 81 kt)

 

A single-seat transition (from primary to advanced training) glider of wooden construction, intended for training pilots in soaring flights. The WWS-1 Salamandra (salamander) was designed in 1936 by engineer Wacław Czerwinski at the Military Glider's Workshops in Kraków. In total, 180 Salamandra gliders were built at the WWS and the Lvov Aviation Workshops. A successful gider popular among pilots, it was used in Polish gliding schools and exported to Yugoslavia, Finland, France, Estland, Romania and Hungary. In 1938, pilot Burak performed on Salamandra a long time soaring flight, lasting 11 h and 15 min. The Salamandras captured by the Germans in 1939 were next used in Croatia.

One example of the Salamandra survived the war in Goleszów, a village in Silesia. Basing on this example engineers Marian Gracz and Rudelf Metz redrew the plans at the Gliding Institute in Bielsko-Biała. Serial production started in 1946. The first batch of five gliders was built at the Gliding Institute. The "IS" abbreviation of the name in Polish (Instytut Szybownictwa) gave the designation to first post-war Polish gliders. The next 78 gliders (built at the Jeżów Workshops) became known as the Salamandra 48.

In comparison with the prewar predecessor the IS Salamandra differed by an improved construction and modified production technology. Experience gained during service allowed for its gradual modification. The next series – the Salamandra 49 was equipped with air brakes. Subsequently the surface of the horizontal stabilizer was enlarged. This series bore the designation Salamandra 53. The export variant Salamandra 53 A was sold to China, were the gliders were also built on licence. Several foreign gliders constructions that emerged in Finland, France, Canada and Yugoslavia, were based on the Salamandra. In Poland they served mass training from 1947 till 1961. In total, 264 examples were built. The last flight of the Salamandra took place in 1962 at the Żar airfield.

The example on display, serial number 003, registration SP-322 was built in 1946 in Bielsko-Biała as the third example of the first production batch. It was used until 1955 and then retired to the Technical Museum in Warsaw, from where it was handed over to the Polish Aviation Museum in 1963.

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