Aircraft concept creatorTo the 100th birthday anniversary of aircraft designer Dmitry Vladimirovich Leschiner.
Dmitry Vladimirovich Leschiner belonged to the outstanding pleiad of Ilyushin design bureau aircraft designers. He successfully combined efficiency, wide knowledge and personal modesty. A significant mark of his life was acquaintance with Sergey Vladimirovich Ilyushin, who became a teacher and a guide for him.
Dmitry Leschiner was born on 17 April 1915 in town of Boyarka, Kyiv region in the family of an officer. In 1918 escaping from the Civil war the family moves to Boguslav, then to Kyiv, then to Fastov, and in 1936 it stays in Moscow.
The family was not rich and at the age of 16 Dmitry starts working as a drawer at the Academy named after Zhukovsky. As Dmitry Vladimirovich recollects later, before his appointment he studied hard, this feature – anxiety for knowledge – will be for the whole life.
In 1934 Leschiner was sent to Taganrog, to the Central design bureau of naval aircraft engineering at aircraft plant No 31. And in a year after organizational arrangements he returns to Moscow to one of design groups of Central Institute of Aerohydrodynamics (TsAGI).
13 January by order No 411 of Deputy of Peoples Commissar of heavy industry USSR P.I. Baranov Central design bureau of prototype aircraft engineering was formed at plant No 39 named after MV.R. Menzhinsky. Sergey Ilyushin was appointed as a Chief of the design bureau.
Considerable groups of designers, engineer, drawers came here from TsAGI. Dmitry Leschiner, young, but with experience and motivation to self-education, he attracted attention of Sergey Ilyushin.
Later Dmitry Vladimirovich recollected: “I came to him (Ilyushin) in 1953 being an18-year-old boy, with no documents. We talked and he said: “Ok, never mind the documents”. We formalized the order and I started to work. And my documents came only in March 1936”.
Leschiner mostly dealt with drafting, weight calculations. He took active part in engineering of different modifications of long-range bomberDB-3 and armored attack plane IL-2.
During the Great Patriotic War D.V. Leschiner’s responsibilities grow. Sergey Vladimirovich Ilyushin, busy with designing IL-2 and IL-4 delegates to Leschiner not only issues of the general layout and configuration of the new planes, but also managing works in Design bureau subdivisions – aerodynamic, weight and balancing calculations.
Having perfect memory, managing skills and responsibility, D.V. Leschiner successfully copes with the tasks.
After war, working under direct supervision of S.V. Ilyushin, he does big work on designing of military and civil aircraft. In these works Leschiner’s talent as a designer and manager was especially marked.
In 1951 S.V. Ilyushin appoints Leschiner to the position of Chief designer: “For the time he has worked in the Design bureau he has given a good account of himself. Talented and initiative designer with good theoretical training and big practical experience. He works carefully… He is good at his position”.
Work on intercontinental IL-62 was another landmark of the life of aircraft designer. Leshciner takes active part in building of this aircraft. He works on the aircraft configuration, choosing the best equipment and its fitting, participates in designing aerodynamic and weigh configuration. During flight tests he conducted a great job on finishing aircraft and its systems. All that provided high economical efficiency and reliability of the aircraft.
D.V. Leschiner together with the group of Design bureau workers receives decree of laureate of Lenin’s Prize for creative activity in building IL-62. It was the last aircraft built by Design bureau under leadership of S.V. Ilyushin.
D.V. Leschiner saved the warmest memories of his teacher. “I can say that if I became a man, it was due to Sergey Vladimirovich Ilyushin… he had a special approach to people, we were not just workers, we were a family. Ant the team considered him the father. There are parents who love their children, but hardly give anything beside their love. But he loved us, and he brought us up”, - he told after many years passed to writer Felix Chuev, who wrote biographic book about Ilyushin.
His desire for self-education also was for the whole his life. And new General Designer of IL aircraft Genrikh Vasilievich Novozhilov. remembering Leschiner also marks this important feature.
And one more – working efficiency, ability to fulfill his work right on time. New, often unexpected tasks were given to the Design bureau from the USSR Aviation Industry Minister P.V. Dementiev. And there were very hard terms.
“Late in the evening I called Dmitry Vladimirovich and told him what we have to prepare, including posters for performance. He always had only one question – when? I told the term and never heard of the difficulty of the work fulfillment. He never had the word “no” nevertheless the difficulty of the task” – Genrikh Vasilievich Novozhilov recollects.
All the scope of works on designing sketch project of a new aircraft, from studying of a great volume of initial data and relative technical information to constructing particular drawings of configuration of aircraft systems was made with direct participation of D.V. Leschiner in short terms, at high technical level. The performed work distinguished itself with detailed elaboration and constructive simplicity in execution.
While working as a Chief of sketch design he dealt with designing of over 50 projects of new aircraft, most of which were built. Based on these sketch projects such famous aircraft as IL-12, IL-14, IL-28, IL-40, IL-62, IL-62M, IL-76, IL-86, IL-96-300 and their special options were engineered, built and put into operation.
A real designer must have lots of features. He must be able to find simplest technical solutions, manage employees for the best work implementation, patiently and persistently overcome arising obstacles. Hero of Socialist labor, Laureate of Lenin’s prize, order bearer Dmitry Vladimirovich Leschiner possessed all these qualities.