Su-25 Frogfoot, Sukhoi

Su-25 Frogfoot heavily armoured anti-tank aircraft

Heavily armoured attack and anti-tank aircraft. The Su-25 is a well-armoured aircraft, capable of carrying a large load under its shoulder-placed wing. Compared to its US counterpart, the A-10, it is faster and more agile. The Su-25 saw combat in Afghanistan, and experience there led to major improvements. A navalized version was built for the large carriers. Later models have more powerful R-195 engines.

The Su-25, which is no longer in serial production, made its first flight in 1979. This single seat ground attack aircraft is a very durable airplane - it is fairly heavily armoured -- and easy to service - all service equipment can be stored in a container and transported by the airplane itself. It is armed with one twin barrel 30mm gun in the bottom of the fuselage with 250 rounds. There are 8 pylons under the wings which can carry about 4,000 kg of air-to-ground weapons, including 57mm to 330mm rockets. There are two small outboard pylons for AA-2D/ATOLL or AA-8/APHID AAMs.

The wings are high-mounted and back-tapered with straight trailing edges. There are pods mounted at the square tips. There are two turbojets mounted alongside the body under the wings. There are semicircular air intakes forward of the wings' leading edges. There are exhausts to the rear of the wings' trailing edges. The fuselage is long, and slender and has a rounded nose. The body tapers to the rear section that overhangs the exhausts. There is a stepped canopy. The tail is swept-back and fin is tapered with a square tip. The flats mid-mounted on the fuselage, unequally tapered with blunt tips.

The Su-39 (also known as the Su-25T or Su-25TM) is a Frogfoot variant incorporating post-Afghanistan lessons-learned. It is based on the Su-25UB two-seat trainer, with the rear seat and cockpit replaced with a fuel cell and extra avionics. The Su-39 carries the Kopyo-25 multi mode radar in a pod under the fuselage. Armament includes ground attack missiles such as the AT-16 Vikhr , anti-ship missiles, and AAMs such as the R-27, R-27ER, R-60, R-73 and R-77. A four-fold reduction in thermal signature has been achieved through cooling intakes on the upper surface of aircraft, and a new center body which masks hot turbine blades. Only a few dozen of these aircraft have been built. Reports in the mid-1990s that the Su-39 designation had been assigned to a primary trainer derived from the Su-26 and Su-29 aerobatic competition aircraft, designed to replace the Yak-52, are apparently incorrect.

Main versions:

Su-25 Frogfoot-A: Initial one-seater version with R-95 engines.
Su-25K: Export version of Su-25.
Su-25UB Frogfoot-B: (UB - Uchebno-Boevoi) Two-seat combat trainer.
Su-25UBK: Export version of Su-25UB.
Su-25UBP: Naval trainer based on Su-25UB.
Su-25UT: (Frogfoot B) (UT - Uchebno-Trenirovochnyi, Trainer) -- Unarmed primary trainer (sometimes referred to as Su-28)
Su-25UTG: (Frogfoot B) (UTG - Uchebno-Trenirovochnyi Gakovyi, Trainer Naval) -- Naval trainer based on Su-25UT.
Su-25BM: Enhanced ground attack aircraft with R-195 engines, this is the current production version, and the most numerous in Russian service.
Su-25TP: Version in maritime attack development.
Su-25T/Su-34: (Su-25TM Tankovyi Modifitsirovannyi, Antitank) -- Proposed enhanced version with more armour, improved sensors, and possibly a new gun and engines [Su-25T's production designation is Su-39].
Su-25TK: Proposed export version of Su-25T.

The Su-25 was designed as a low level attack aircraft used in support of ground forces, much like the A-10 Thunderbolt II. Titanium, 24 mm thick, is used to protect the cockpit and other vital components from ground fire, while the internal fuel tanks are lined with a special foam to help protect against explosion. A two-seat variant was later designed as the Su-25UB, and an un-armed version was built - the Su-25UT, which later became the Su-28. Poor combat performance of the Su-25 in Afghanistan led to a much improved 'Frogfoot', named the Su-39. Designed from the Su-25UB, the Su-39 included wing-tip ECM pods, chaff/flare dispensers, IR jammer, and a new navigation and attack system which provided fully automatic weapon selection and release.

Prime contractor: Sukhoi Design Bureau
Nation of origin: Russia
Function: Attack
Crew: 1
In-service year: 1978
Engine: Two Tumansky R-195 non-afterburning turbofans, 9,921 lb thrust each
Wing span: 14.36 m / 47 ft 2 in
Length: 15.53 m / 50 ft 2 in
Height: 4.8 m / 15 ft 9 in
Weight: 20,950 lb empty / 38,800 lb max. take off
Ceiling: 22,965 ft
@ attack speed: 690 km/h / 428 mph
@ max. sea level: 975 km/h / 606 mph
Range: 1,250 km / 777 miles
Armament: One AO-17A 30mm twin-barrel cannon with 250 rounds, plus 9,700 lb including Kh-23/25/29 ASMs, laser-guided bombs, cluster bombs, S-5 57mm rockets, S-8 80mm rockets, S-24 240mm rockets, S-25 330mm rockets, Gsh-23 23mm twin-barrel gun pods with 260 rounds each, R-3S/60 AAMs, or four fuel tanks on ten external points

Type: Su-25 'Frogfoot-A'
Function: attack
Year: 1978
Crew: 1
Engines: 2 * 4100kg Tumansky R-95Sh
Wing Span: 14.36 m
Length: 15.53 m
Height: 4.80 m
Wing Area: 30.10 m2
Max.Weight: 17600 kg
Speed: 970 km/h
Ceiling: 7000 m
Range: 1250 km
Armament: 1*g30 mm (250rpg), 4400 kg

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