Bomber: Pe-8 - Russia (Revised 2004)

Bomber: Pe-8 - Russia (Revised 2004)

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Part Number:REV04_RUBOM

Strategic Bomber

Petlyakov Pe-8

Name

Length

Wingspan

Weight

Max Bomb-load

Armament

Speed

Ceiling

Range

Empty

Max Take-Off

Petlyakov Pe-8

76’

(23.2 m)

128’ 4”

(39.1 m)

40,941 lbs.

(18,571 kg)

77,000 lbs

(35,000 kg)

11,000 lbs.

(5,000 kg)

2x 20 mm;

2x 12.7 mm;

2x 7.62 mm

275 mph

443 km/h

30,504’

(9,300 m)

2,299 mi.

(3,700 km)

 

Petlayakov Pe-8 Strategic Bomber

 

ID: Plastic “bomber” gaming piece: Pe-8 heavy bomber from the game Axis & Allies Europe 40 & Pacific 40.

 

The Story of the Pe-8 Heavy Bomber: The Petlyakov Pe-8 was the only four-engine heavy bomber built by the Soviets during the war, and yet it was produced in far fewer numbers than the far more famous American & British heavy bombers.  Only 90 Pe-8’s were built, which pales in comparison to the production of American and British heavies, such as the American B-17 “Flying Fortress”(12,731) and B-24 “Liberator” (18,482) or British heavy bombers, like the British Handley Page Halifax (6,178) and Avro Lancaster (7,377.)  It is not to be inferred from this, however, that there was anything inherantly wrong with the Pe-8’s design, as its stats compare reasonably well with those four comparable 4-engine heavy bombers.  (The Pe-8 did have some reliability issues due to it engines, but this was more an issue of manufacturing problems than design problems.)  Nor should we infer from this that the Soviets were incapable of producing them in large numbers, as the Soviets did manage to produce more than 11,000 Pe-2 medium bombers and 36,000 Il-2 attack planes!  The rarity of the Pe-8 on the battlefields of Europe was rather a matter of priorities: long-range, strategic bombing had not been the USSR’s top priority.  Fighting for its very existence against the powerful German attack, the Soviet Union had put its aircraft production priority rather to faster and cheaper (though shorter-ranged and smaller-in-payload) medium bombers and to ground attack planes, which netted them more immediate results on the battlefield.  Nevertheless, the Pe-8 stands as a testament to Soviet aeronautical achievement, being one of the most capable operational four-engined heavy bombers of the war, a type that their arch-rivals in the Luftwaffe never managed to field in numbers.

 

Usage Notes: Use this piece for “Global 1939” and “Invasion of Italy” Variants as a strategic bomber unit.  Other Soviet aircraft of interest may be: Yak Fighter & Ilyushin Il-2 “Sturmovik” Tactical Bomber.  Rival heavy bombers of interest may be: the US B-17 “Flying Fortress,” and the British Handley Page Halifax.

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