Russian Ekranoplans

In the USSR the WIG ("wing in ground effect") developments took place at the Central Hydrofoil Design Bureau (CHDB), lead by Alexeiev. The military potential for such a craft was soon recognised and Alexeiev received personal support from Kruchevn including virtually unlimited financial resources. This very important development in WIG history lead to the Caspian Sea Monster, v a 550 ton military ekranoplan, only a few years after this top secret project was initiated. The first ekranoplan as we know it now, the SM-2P, was built in 1962. Another feature found in most later ekranoplans were the jets that were blowing under the wing to assist at take-off.

Orlyonok A-90