This is coolbert:
It could very well be that the engineering development of the Soviet I-16 "Rata" fighter aircraft was very greatly influenced by the American GeeBee series of airplanes.
But NOT EXACTLY as I had thought.
Here is the Russian web site ["History of Creation"] in English describing the process by which the I-16 came into being.
The GeeBee series of aircraft were innovative and unique for their time. Very much so. In some respects far advanced.
"The GeeBee and its designers had until recently been given a bad rap for their aircraft designs. In actuality they were remarkable aircraft and contributed greatly to the technical advancement of aviation design and aeronautical engineering, and had monumental impact on the development of military and civil aircraft that followed."
Polikarpov MAY HAVE VERY WELL HAD THE "Model-Y Senior Sportster" IN MIND WHEN HE DID HIS SEMINAL WORK ON THE I-16?? NOT THE GEEBEE R-1 AND R-2 MADE SO FAMOUS BY JIMMY DOOLITTLE!!
Judge for yourself!!
Espionage was involved here?! If so, it was probably the work of Amtorg. American Trading Corporation. Handled trade matters between the Soviet Union and the United States BEFORE diplomatic relations were fully established.
"The Amtorg Trading Corporation is an American company based in New York that was founded in 1924 by the Soviet Union to serve as its buying and selling organization in trade between the USSR and the USA. It handled the bulk of Soviet-American trade until 1935 . . . Working as an Amtorg employee served as a convenient cover for Soviet spies"
Probably, if so, the work of the GRU. Soviet [now Russian] military intelligence.
There was in all likelihood, extensive espionage activity being conducted by employees of Amtorg. As witnessed by the enormous number of secret messages passed between NYC and Moscow during the early 1930's. Messages probably sent in an enciphered code system with one-time-pad additive. Unreadable under all circumstances if used properly.
"In 1930 Hamilton Fish . . . American Congressman . . . managed to lay his hands on 3,000 coded telegrams from the Soviet Trading Corporation "Amtorg" in New York"
Amtorg got their hands on - - the plans of the Model-Y aircraft? From whence came the I-16?