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Japan's Nakajima Ki-115 Tsurugi (saber) suicide attack plane

Photos

  • Nakajima Ki-115 Tsurugi suicide attack

 

Design

With the inevitable invasion of the Japanese home islands coming the Japanese Army, on January 20, 1945, ordered Nakajima to build a suicide attack aircraft. It had to be easy to manufacture, maintain, and fly.

Engineer Aori Kunihiro, Mitaka Kenkyujo (Mitaka Research Institute), and Ota Seisakusho K.K. (Ota Manufacturing Co. Ltd) designed the Nakajima Ki-115a Suicide Attacker Tsurugi (saber).

The wings were all metal and the fuselage had a steel structure. The tail had a wood frame.

The undercarriage was made to be jettisoned after take off.

Prototype

A prototype was completed in March 1945 and test flights commenced. It was found that the Ki-115 was very difficult to handle on the ground.

Flight tests were completed in June 1945.

Production

  • Nakajima Ki-115a prototype: 1
    • Manufacturer: Nitaka Kenkyujo at Mitaka
  • Nakajima Ki-115a: 104
    • Manufacturer: Nakajima Hikoki K.K. at Iwate (22), Nakajima Hikoki K.K. at Ota (82)
  • Production: March - August 1945

Variants

  • Nakajima Ki-115:
  • Nakajima Ki-115b: Was to have wood wings.
  • Nakajima Ki-230: Only preliminary designs made.
  • Toka (Wistaria) Suicide Attacker: Navy version. Never produced.

Specifications

  Ki-115a
Type Suicide Attack
Crew 1
Engine (Type) Nakajima Ha-35
Cylinders Radial 14
Cooling Air
HP 1,150
Propeller 3 blade metal fixed pitch
Dimensions  
Span 28' 2 9/16"
8.6 m
Length 28' 5/8"
8.55 m
Height 10' 9 15/16"
3.3 m
Wing area 133.472 sq ft
12.4 sq m
Weight  
Empty 3,616 lb
1,640 kg
Loaded 5,688 lb
2,580 kg
Load - Maximum 6,349 lb
2,880 kg
Performance  
Speed at 9,185' / 2,800 m 342 mph
550 kph
Speed - Cruising 186 mph
300 kph
Range 745 miles
1,200 km
Armament  
Bombs 1: 551 lb
1: 250 kg
OR 1: 1,102 lb
1: 500 kg
OR 1: 1,764 lb
1: 800 kg
  Ki-115b
Type Suicide Attack
Crew 1
Engine (Type) Nakajima Ha-35
Cylinders Radial 14
Cooling Air
HP 1,150
Propeller 3 blade metal fixed pitch
Dimensions  
Span 31' 10 11/16"
9.72 m
Length 28' 5/8"
8.55 m
Height 10' 8 15/16"
3.3 m
Wing area 156.076 sq ft
14.5 sq m
Weight  
Empty 3,726 lb
1,690 kg
Loaded 5,798 lb
2,630 kg
Performance  
Speed at 19,030' / 5,800 m 385 mph
620 kph
Service Ceiling 21,325'
6,500 m
Range 745 miles
1,200 km
Armament  
Bombs 1: 551 lb
1: 250 kg
OR 1: 1,102 lb
1: 500 kg
OR 1: 1,764 lb
1: 800 kg

Sources:

  1. Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War, René J Francillon, 1970
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site