Sukhoi Su-25

YouTube – Sukhoi Su-25 

Primary Function:
Weight Empty:
Max. Weight:
Internal Fuel:
External Fuel:
Cruise Speed:
Max. Speed:
Climb Rate:
First Flight:
Year Deployed:
one or two
2 x 9,480 lbs. ea.
23,680 lbs.
45,200 lbs.
6,614 lbs.
4,156 lbs.
9,684 lbs.
1 x 30 mm
50 ft. 11 in.
47 ft. 1 in.
424 mph
606 mph
11,400 fpm
22,950 feet
780 miles

Sukhoi Su-25

Sukhoi Su-25

The Sukhoi Su-25 was designed as a close air support aircraft, primarily for use against tanks and armor of NATO forces. It has the ability to loiter over the battlefield and strike targets as they present themselves. The aircraft is also capable of engaging helicopters and relatively low speed fixed wing aircraft. It is the only dedicated close support aircraft deployed by Russia.

The Sukhoi Su-25 can operate out of rough forward based airfields, with engines that can operate on less than premium fuels found in a combat environment, such as gasoline and diesel fuel. Although known by the West by its NATO name Frogfoot, pilots of the aircraft call it “Gratch” (rook) due to its ability to get to hard to find targets.

Latest upgrades to Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft include the ability to receive external targeting data through their unified troop command and control systems. The systems provide information for best target acquisition and best ordnance choice. Once a target is selected, artificial intelligence acquires and locks onto it with guided missiles at just the touch of a button by the pilot.

The twin barrel cannons of the Sukhoi Su-25 can pierce thick armor. The fuselage cannon fires 30 mm shells, and has a 250 round capacity. It can fire in short bursts at the rate of 3,000 rounds per minute. In addition, gun pods can be mounted below each wing housing 23 mm twin barrel cannons with 260 rounds of ammunition per cannon.

The eleven hardpoints of the Sukhoi Su-25 are capable of carrying up to 9,684 lbs. of ordnance including air to air and air to ground missiles, anti-tank ordnance, cluster and laser guided bombs. Air to surface missiles include the Kh-23, NATO code name AS-7 Kerryl, Kh-25L, NATO code name AS-10 Karen, Kh-28, NATO code AS-9 Kyle, and Kh 29, NATO code name AS-14 Kedge. Air to air missiles include the K-13 NATO code AA-2 Atoll, or R-60, NATO code name AA-8 Aphid. The aircraft can also carry UV-32 – 57 mm 2.22 S-5, and B8M1 – 80 mm 3.12 in S-8 rocket pods, or S-24 240 mm 9.3 in. or S-25 330 mm 13 in. rockets. The Su-25 carries a total of 256 decoy flares which are fired in clusters of 32. These are intended to keep heat seeking missiles from honing in on it.

The Sukhoi Su-25 was designed for a hostile environment. The pilot is surrounded by titanium armour for protection against shrapnel and ground fire. Rather than cable activated controls, the Su-25 uses heavy duty pushrods which are less likely to be damaged in combat.

As a result of combat evaluation, a number of modifications were made to original production Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft. The engines are housed in protective stainless steel bays for extra protection. The fuel tanks are foam filled to prevent explosions, and are armor plated on the undersides.

Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft first saw combat in July of 1981 flying against Islamist Afghan fighters (Mujahideen) in Afghanistan. The aircraft were withdrawn from operations in February of 1989. While in Afghanistan they flew some 60,000 missions, losing some 58 aircraft in total from all causes.

Iraqi Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft were used in the latter part of their war against Iran in 1987 and 1988, flying some 900 combat missions. Iraq stated that two of its aircraft were lost in combat.

During the Gulf War, from August 1990 to February 1991, most Iraqi Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft were destroyed in precision air strikes, when hardened bunkers in which they were housed were attacked by coalition aircraft.

From 1988 through 2002, during the Angolan Civil War, Angolan Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft were used against rebel UNITA forces. Executive Outcomes mercenaries, in support of the Angolan government, also flew against UNITA forces starting in 1990.

In 1992 and 1993, during the Abkhazian war, Georgian Air Force and Abkhazian Air Force Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft flew against Abkhazn separatist forces.  Russian Air Force Sukhoi Su-25 jets flew on the side of the separatists, attackian Abkhazan government forces.

In the 1994 through 1990 Chechen Wars, Russian Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft flew thousands of missions in support of their troops fighting against Chechen forces.

In the Nagorno-Karabakh War, from 1980 to 1994, Armenia and Azerbaijan fought to control the Nagorno Karabakh area of southwestern Azerbaijan. Both sides employed Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft. During the Eritrean Ethiopian War, from 1988 to 2000, both sides employed the Sukhoi Su-25.  Yet again. during the Russo Georgian war in 2008. both Russian and Georgian forces extensively used Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft.

Begining in 2014, the Ukrainian Air Force used its Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft against pro-Russian separatists and Russian government forces.

Starting in September of 2015, Russian Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft, in support of the Syrian government, have been used against rebel forces.

In 2015 and 2016, Iraqi Air Force Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft were used for close air support during the Battle of Ramadi and other battles in western Anbar Province.

Sukhoi Su-25 jets have been used in limited numbers during the 2001 Macedonian insurgency, the 2004 Ivorian Civil War and the 2008 Darfur conflict.

Variants of the Sukhoi Su-25 are operated by the Russian Air Force, Russian Naval Aviation Forces, and numerous air forces throughout the world. The aircraft is also produced as a two seat trainer.

A total of  over 1,000 Sukhoi Su-25 aircraft of all types have been produced to date. Some 485 of the aircraft are deployed in 21 countries around the world. Russia has some 200 of the aircraft deployed, Belarus some 70, and North Korea about 35.

RC Sukhoi Su-25

RC Sukhoi Su-25

Pictured immediately above is the great looking RC Sukhoi Su-25 Frogfoot slope soarer built by Brian Laird from Carl Maas Plans. It has a 48 inch wingspan, with a glass fiber fuselage and balsa over foam wings. Controls are ailerons and elevator. Weight is around 45 oz.

Mr. UD of RC Groups started a construction thread for a RC Sukhoi Su-25 EDF. Its wingspan is 50 in. with power from a pair of brushless motors turning 53 mm fan units.

Sartor published three view drawings of the Sukhoi Su-25 to RC Groups.

At RC Groups darmar started a construction thread for a RC Sukhoi Su-25. It has a 36 in. wingspan and is powered by two electric ducted fan units.

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