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Mikhail Gromov
Михаил Михайлович Громов
Gromov in 1937
Born24 February [O.S. 12 February] 1899
Died22 January 1985(1985-01-22) (aged 85)
Resting placeNovodevichy Cemetery, Moscow
MonumentsZhukovsky, Russia at the headquarters of the Gromov Flight Research Institute
Known forEstablishing a new non-stop flight distance record
of 12411 kilometers (6,306 mi) from Moscow
to San Jacinto, California, U.S
AwardsHero of the Soviet Union
National Order of the Legion of Honour
Aviation career
First flight1917
Farman IV
Famous flights
Flight license1918
Air forceImperial Russian Army
Soviet Air Forces
Rank General-Polkovnik of aviation (1944)

Mikhail Mikhailovich Gromov (Russian: Михаи́л Миха́йлович Гро́мов; 24 February [O.S. 12 February] 1899 – 22 January 1985) was a Russian and Soviet military aviator, test pilot, and Hero of the Soviet Union.

Early life

Gromov's father, Mikhail Konstantinovich Gromov, was of noble intelligentsia and served as military medic. His mother, Lyubov Ignatyevna Andreeva, was from peasant family and received training as an obstetrician. Gromov spent his childhood in Kaluga, Rzhev,[1] Myza-Raevo (near Moscow).[2] He graduated from Voskresensky Real School in Moscow, and went on to study at the IMTS from 1916 to 1917. In 1917, Gromov graduated from aviation theoretical courses at IMTS and started his army service.


Institutional positions

Upon graduation, Gromov served as a flight instructor and military pilot. In 1923, he won the Soviet championship in weightlifting. In 1925, he started working as a test pilot for the Air Force Research Institute testing the planes designed by Andrei Tupolev and Nikolai Polikarpov. From 1930 to 1941, Gromov then worked at the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute and became chief-pilot.[3]

From March to August 1941, Gromov was the first director of the Flight Research Institute, a flight research and testing centre in Zhukovsky. The name of M. M. Gromov was awarded to the institute in 1991 to celebrate the Institute's 50th anniversary.

After the war, Gromov was deputy commander of the Long-Range Aviation from 1946 to 1949. Later, till 1955, he was head of Department of flight service of Ministry of Aviation Industry. In 1955 he was discharged.

From 1937 to 1946, Gromov was deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR (1st convocation).

In late 1940, he initiated the establishment of the Fedotov Test Pilot School.[4]

Testing history

Gromov was involved in extensive testing and promotion of Russian airplanes throughout Europe and Asia. For example, from June to September 1925, Gromov flew the Polikarpov R-1 in the long-haul group flight of nine aeroplanes on the route Moscow-Beijing-Tokyo. A year later, in 1926, Gromov completed a 7,150 kilometers (4,440 mi) European promotional flight in a Tupolev ANT-3 on the route Moscow-Königsberg-Berlin-Paris-Rome-Vienna-Prague-Warsaw-Moscow. Notably, on 25 April 1927, he made the first Soviet parachute jump out of a Polikarpov I-1 in a testing that involved the plane having entered into an unrecoverable spin.[5]

From 10 to 12 September 1934, Gromov, A. I. Filin, and I. T. Spirin made a record closed-circle non-stop flight on the route Moscow-Ryazan-Kharkov in a Tupolev ANT-25, flying 12,411 kilometers (7,712 mi) in 75 hours. Gromov was subsequently awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union for this feat.

In July 1937, Gromov, Andrey Yumashev, and Sergey Danilin established [ru] a new non-stop flight distance record of 10,148 kilometers (6,306 mi) from Moscow to San Jacinto, California, via the North Pole in a Tupolev ANT-25.[6]

Service in World War II

During World War II, Gromov took command of several units:


From 1959 to 1961, Gromov headed the Weightlifting Federation of USSR.

Gromov used his influence and renown to attain reconsideration of Sergei Korolev's case, which resulted in Korolev's transfer from the prison camp at Kolyma to TsKB-29.

Gromov lived in Moscow. Gromov's wife, Nina Georgievna Gromova (1922–2019), was an equestrian sportswoman.[7]

Gromov died on January 22 1985 in Moscow. He is buried at Novodevichy Cemetery.



In philately

In phaleristics

The Gromov Medal was established in March 2011 by the Gromov Flight Research Institute as a highest corporate award in memory of the founder of the institute.[8]


  1. ^ "Открытие памятника Герою СССР М.М. Громову". Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  2. ^ Gromov, Mikhail (2005). На земле и в небе. Moscow: Гласность-АС. ISBN 5-85868-004-6.
  3. ^ Громов, Михаил (1986). Через всю жизнь [Through the Whole Life] (in Russian). Москва: Молодая гвардия. p. 190.
  4. ^ Знаменская, Наталья, ed. (2002). ШЛИ со временем [ShLI in Time] (in Russian) (2 ed.). Жуковский: ООО "Редакция газеты "Жуковские вести". p. 400.
  5. ^ Gunston, Bill (1995). The Osprey Encyclopedia of Russian Aircraft 1875–1995. London: Osprey. ISBN 1-85532-405-9., pp. 286-287.
  6. ^ Gromov, M. M. (1939). Across the North pole to America. Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House. p. 38.
  7. ^ "Легенды не стареют! Нина Георгиевна Громова снова в седле". (in Russian). Archived from the original on 12 February 2019. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  8. ^ "Establishing the Gromov Medal" (in Russian). Gromov Flight Research Institute. 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2020.