YouTube – Yak-40



Primary Function:
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regional jet
Ivchenko turbofans
3 x 3,300 lbf. ea.
20,725 lbs.
34,170 lbs.
32 passengers
66 ft. 10 in.
82 ft. 0 in.
300 mph
342 mph
1,600 fpm
26,000 feet
1,120 miles



The former Soviet Union Yak-40 was the world’s first jet powered regional airliner. Aeroflot began flying it in September of 1968.

It was 1961 when Aeroflot Airlines requested a replacement for their smaller piston powered aircraft for short distance flights out of undeveloped air fields with runways as short as 2,500 feet, in inclement weather conditions.

The task of developing the new airliner fell upon the Yakovlev Design Bureau. A number of solutions were considered to shorten take off and landing distances, some radical. However, Yakovlev decided upon a conventional design with a high lift wing design, placing three engines in the tail. The aircraft would originally carry a maximum a 30 passengers sitting three across. Its large wing area, slotted flaps, and engines with sufficient power, would accomplish short take offs and landings.

The Yak-40 was popular with airlines and air forces in 75 countries around the world. It received flying certificates from Germany and Italy. Yak-40 aircraft, used by Aeroflot, were the backbone of their local operations. They flew to some 276 cities and carried over 350 million passenger.

Five Yak-40 prototypes were produced. The first took to the air in October of 1966. Testing went well and the aircraft began flying passenger service in October of 1968.

The Yak-40 received several upgrades including a longer range version in 1974. Several cosmetic changes also appeared throughout the years including additional cabin windows and a relocated loading door.

Yak-40 models include the Model 25 military conversion, Akva military conversion for electronic counter measures, Model D long range, Model EC for export, Fobos military version, Model K cargo version, Kalibrovshchik intelligence gathering aircraft, Liros military conversion with data sensors, Meteo electronic intelligence version, L with additional aerodynamics, REO military version, Shtorm military conversion, and V export version with upgraded engines.

May 4, 1972 – A Yak-40 flown by Aeroflot with 18 on board went down losing all on board. Wind shear was said to cause loss of aircraft control.

Feb. 28, 1973 – A Aeroflot Yak-40 stalled and went down when taking off from Semipalatinsk Airport in Kazakh losing all 32 on board.

July 15, 1975 – A Aeroflot Yak-40 struck Mt. Mtirala in the Caucasus Mountains. All 41 on board were lost.

Aug 15, 1975 – A Yak-40 from Aeroflot stalled and went down on approach to Krasnovodsk Airport, losing 23 of 28 on board.

Sept. 9, 1976 – A Yak-40 flown by Aeroflot was in a collision with a An-24 over the Black Sea. A total of 18 passengers on board the Yak-40 and 46 passengers on board the An-24 were lost.

Oct. 7, 1978 – A Yak-40 from Aeroflot suffered an engine failure during take off and went down with the loss of 38 passengers on board.

June 8, 1980 – A Yak-40 flown by TAAG Angola Airlines was shot down by a MiG-19 near Matala, Angola with the loss of 19 passengers on board.

June 12, 1980 – A Aeroflot Yak-40 flew into a mountain near Dushanbe Airport, Tajik, and all 29 on board were lost.

Sept 18, 1981 – While on approach to Zheleznogorsk-Ilimskiy Airport a Aeroflot Yak-40 collided with a Mi-8 helicopter. All 33 passengers and crew aboard the Yak-40 were lost as well as all those aboard the helicopter.

Aug. 2, 1988 – A Balkan Yak-40 overran the runway on take off with 28 of its 37 passengers and crew lost.

Aug. 1, 1990 – A Aeroflot Yak-40 flew into a mountain while 14 miles from Stepanakerk Airport, Azerbaijan, losing all on board.

Nov. 14, 1992 – A Vietnam Airlines Yak-40 hit obstacles while on final approach. Only one passenger survived of the total 31 on board.

Aug. 28, 1993 – A Tajikistan Airlines Yak-40 overloaded with 81 passengers and five crew on board overran the runway at Khorong Airport, Tajikistan. Only four passengers survived.

Feb. 25, 1994 – A Yak-40 from Expresso Aero hit Mount Carpish in Peru with all 31 on board lost.

Sept. 26, 1994 – A Cheremshanka Airlines Yak-40 ran out of fuel while attempting an emergency landing at Vanavara with all 28 on board lost.

Nov. 5, 1994 – A Servicion Aereos Amazonicos Yak-40 overran the Lima Peru runway with the loss of 1 crew member and five passengers out of the 31 on board.

Feb. 19, 1997 – A Yak-40 from Semeyavia overran the runway at Semey Airport, Kazakhstan, and was damaged beyond repair. All on board survived.

May 17, 2001 – A Yak-40 from Faraz Qeshm Airlines hit the Elburz Mountains in Iran with the loss of all 30 on board.

Jan 13, 2004 – A Uzbekistan Airways Yak-40 overshot the runway at Tashkent International Airport, Uzbekistan with the loss of all 37 on board.

July 9, 2018 – During a landing at Aldan Airport, Russia, an Aero Bratsk Yak-40  overran the runway. The aircraft’s undercarriage needed minimal repairs while 25 crew and passengers did not sustain any injuries.

A total of 1,011 aircraft were produced through November of 1981. About 40 are still flying.

RC Yak-40

RC Yak-40

We received the following email from Sergey Shkodin ([email protected]):

“Enclosed is a picture of my RC Yak-40 (see above). It has a 142 in. wingspan and a length of 115 1/2 in.

Power can come from one turbine engine or twin 120 mm EDF units.

It comes ARF including a three piece fuselage, wings, tails and stabs, aluminum joining tubes, manual with USB flash drive 2Gb.

This RC Yak-40 is almost ready to fly. You must connect the component parts by using a screwdriver only!

Shipping (worldwide)will be via EMS only!”

Terje from Norway has a RC Yak-40 build thread on RC Groups. The proposed RC airplane will have a wingspan of 40 in. and a length of 32 in. Power will come from EDF units.

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