Sukhoi Su-25

TypeClose air support
Country of originSoviet Union (now Russia)
ManufacturerSukhoi Design Bureau
Tbilisi Aircraft Manufacturing (former)
First flight22 February 1975 (T8)
Introduced19 July 1981
Numbers built1,024
Unit costsUS$11 million
Max speed950 km/h (590 mph, Mach 0.77)
Max rangeCombat radius: 375 km (235 mi)
Ferry range: 2,500 km (1,553 mi)
Service ceiling: 10,000 m (22,200 ft)
DimensionsLength: 15.33 m (50 ft 11)
Wingspan: 14.36 m (47 ft 1 in)
Height: 4.80 m (15 ft 9 in)
Wing area: 30.1 m² (324 ft²)
WeightEmpty weight: 10,740 kg (23,677 lb)
Loaded weight: 16,990 kg (37,456 lb)
Max takeoff weight: 20,500 kg (45,194 lb)
Powerplant2 x Tumansky R-195 turbojets, 44.18 kN (9,480 lbf) each
Armament1 × GSh-30-2 30mm cannon with 250 rounds

11 hardpoints for up to 4,400 kg (9,700 lb) of disposable ordnance, including rails for 2 × R-60 (AA-8 'Aphid') or other air-to-air missiles for self-defence and a wide variety of general-purpose bombs, cluster bombs, gun pods, rocket pods, laser-guided bombs, and air-to-surface missiles such as the Kh-25ML or Kh-29L.
OperatorsCurrent operators:
Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Gambia, Iran, Kazakhstan, North Korea, Peru, Russia, Sudan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan

Former operators:
Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Czechoslovakia, Czech Republic, Macedonia, Iraq, Slovakia, Soviet Union

Sukhoi Su-25, NATO calls it as Frogfoot, is a close air support jet aircraft which was designed and built by Sukhoi Design Bureau since the era of the Soviet Union in 1978 until today. Approximately there were 1024 Sukhoi Su-25, which is a unit worth of $11 million, have been produced and exported to various countries.  The aircraft is operated by the Soviet Ground Forces and is still a mainstay of several military forces such as Belarusian Air Force, Georgian Air Force, Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Air Force, North Korean Air Force, Peruvian Air Force, Ukrainian Air Force and several others.

Since it was firstly operated, the Sukhoi Su-25 has been engaged in several conflicts including the Soviet war in Afghanistan, the Iran-Iraq War, the Abkhazian War and the Russo-Georgian War and other battles in the African continent.

The Development of Sukhoi

World War II and several local conflicts in the Soviet Union had provided a valuable lesson of how important the role of ground-attack aircraft. SomeSoviet jet fighters of that era such as the MiG-21, MiG-23, Su-7, and Su-17 were not able to provide results that were expected to protect the Soviet Ground Forces during battles and when they move forward through the opponent’s defensive line. Jet fighters with their fast speed and vulnerability of withstanding shot impact from anti-aircraft missiles and guns are not capable to hit the ground targets. Fighters do not have the armor that is strong enough for the use of heavy armor will reduce their speed.

Finally in March 1969, the Soviet Air Force held a competition to obtain a new close air support aircraft that can meet Air Force and battle requirements. The competition which being fought by Ilyushin, Mikoyan, Sukhoi and Yakovlev was eventually won by the Sukhoi design originally called T-8 first flew in February 1975. At that time, the production of Sukhoi Su-25 performed in Tbilisi, which is now part of Georgia.

The Design of the Sukhoi Su-25

Sukhoi Su-25 is a single-seat and twin-engine jet aircraft that feature shoulder-mounted trapezoidal wing and a conventional tailplane and rudder. The airframe was dominated by aluminum, steel and titanium.

Pilot who sits on the Zvezda K-36 ejection seat controlling the aircraft using a center stick and left hand throttles. The pilot has a limited visibility in the cockpit in an effort to give greater protection to the pilot.

Sukhoi Su-25 is driven by two Tumansky R-195 non-afterburning turbojets enabling the aircraft to achieve a maximum speed of 950 km/h (590 mph) with a maximum combat radius of 375 km (235 mi).

To conduct its duty as an umbrella of ground forces, the Sukhoi Su-25 is armed with a GSh-30-2 30mm cannon. With 11 hardpoints, the aircraft can carry two R-60 (AA-8 ‘aphid’) or other air-to-air missiles for self-defense and various general-purpose bombs, cluster bombs, gun pods, rocket pods, laser-guided bombs, and air-to-surface missiles such as the Kh-Kh-29L or 25ml.

Twin seat version of Sukhoi Su-25 is also produced for training purposes. Russia continues modifying and improving the close air support aircraft which is comparable with the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II.

Sukhoi Su-25 videos

Su-25 In Action

The Su-25 – ‘Flying Tank’

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