Sukhoi Su-34

Sukhoi Su-34

infobox Aircraft
name =Su-34
type =Fighter/Bomber
manufacturer =Sukhoi

caption =
designer =
first flight =13 April 1990
introduced =4 January 2007" [ Russia gets first new fighters for 15 years as Sukhoi Su-34 debuts] ." Karnozov, V. "Flight International". January 4, 2007.]
retired =
status =In production/in service
primary user =Russian Air Force
more users =
produced =2007-current
number built = ~10 with 5-10 more in 2008. []
unit cost =US$36 million (1997) [ [ Military aircraft prices] ]
developed from = Sukhoi Su-27
variants with their own articles =

The Sukhoi Su-34 (export designation Su-32, NATO reporting name Fullback) is an advanced Russian 2-seat fighter-bomber and strike aircraft. It is intended to eventually replace the Sukhoi Su-24.


A dedicated fighter bomber version of the Su-27 'Flanker' first developed from the 1980s for the Soviet Union, with the Sukhoi bureau designation T-10V. It made its first flight on 13 April 1990 and was originally designated Su-27IB (IB: "Istrebitel Bombardirovshchik" / Fighter Bomber). [Williams, Mel ed. "Superfighters, The Next Generation of Combat Aircraft", AIRtime, 2002. ISBN 1-880588-53-6. p. 132-135, 138.] It was developed in parallel with the two-seat naval trainer, the Su-27KUB (KUB: "Korabelnyy Uchebno-Boyevoy", shipboard combat trainer), although, contrary to earlier reports, the two aircraft are not directly related. [Andrews, Thomas, "Sukhoi Su-27/Su-3o Family," "International Air Power Review", Volume 8, Spring 2003.]

Budget restrictions led the program to stall repeatedly, and led to the prototype aircraft being displayed publicly under a variety of roles and designations. When first described in the official Russian press in 1994 it was described as the Su-34. The third pre-production aircraft was shown at a Paris Air Show in 1995 as the Su-34FN (FN for "Fighter, Navy"), described as a shore-based naval aircraft, and it was displayed as the Su-34MF (MF for "MnogoFunksionalniy", multi-function) at the MAKS air show in 1999. The Russian Air Force has apparently recently adopted the designation Su-34.

The aircraft shares most of its wing structure, tail, and engine nacelles with the Su-27/Su-30 'Flanker', with canards like the Su-30/Su-33 'Flanker-D'/Su-35 'Flanker-F' to increase static instability (higher maneuverability) and to reduce trim drag. The aircraft has an entirely new nose and forward fuselage with a cockpit providing side-by-side seating for a crew of two. The Su-34 retains the Su-27's engines, but with fixed intakes, limiting its maximum speed to Mach 1.8+.


To date only a handful of pre-production models have been built. In mid-2004 Sukhoi announced that low-rate production was commencing and that initial aircraft would reach squadron service around 2008. Nevertheless, upgrade programs continue for surviving Russian Su-24 "Fencers", as the Su-34 may still not enter wide service for some years to come.

In March 2006, Russia's minister of defense Sergei Ivanov announced that the government had purchased only two Su-34s for delivery in 2006, and planned to have a complete air regiment of 44 Su-34s operational by the end of 2010. A total of 200 aircraft will be purchased by 2015 to replace some of 500+ Su-24, which are going through modernisation upgrades currently to prolong their service life. Ivanov claimed that because the aircraft is "many times more effective on all critical parameters" the Russian Air Force will need far fewer of these newer bombers than the old Su-24 it replaces.

In December 2006, Ivanov revealed that approximately 200 Su-34s are expected be in service by 2020. [ [ "Su-34 Fullback fighter takes to the skies"] , RIA Novosti (Russian News and Information Agency), 19 December 2006.] This was confirmed by Air Force chief Vladimir Mikhailov on March 6, 2007. [ [ "3rd serial Su-34 fighter-bomber to take to the skies in November"] , RIA Novosti (Russian News and Information Agency), 6 March 2007.]

Two Su-34s were delivered on January 4, 2007, and six more will be delivered by the end of that year. On 9 January 2008, Sukhoi reported that the Su-34 has begun full-rate production. Russia plans to have 24 Su-34s operational by late 2010 with a total of 70 to be purchased by 2015. [ "Russia producing new Su-34 bombers"] , United Press International, 9 January 2008.] []


Cockpit and avionics

Unlike the earlier Su-27, the Su-34 has a modern glass cockpit, with colour CRT multi-function displays. Its avionics currently are based around a Leninets V004 passive electronically scanned array radar, and a UOMZ laser/television system for designating and guiding precision-guided munitions. The front-mounted radar is supplemented by a rear-aspect V005 radar housed in the long tail "stinger". The Su-34 is equipped with comprehensive ECM equipment, including an infrared missile launch detection system.

The avionics suite has an extended architecture of computers, memory boards, color multi-function displays, and processors designed as self-contained information processing modules. They consist of large "Argon" digital computer units with specially programmed processors that use multiplex data-exchange channels. All information modules are controlled by a dual central computing system that fully coordinates workload and provides all relevant information to the flight deck. Two-way data link enables the mission planning and weapon aim-point computations to be loaded or updated while in flight or aircraft to aircraft. As a strike aircraft, the Su-34 incorporates an advanced multi-function phased array radar capable of terrain following and avoidance for high speed, low level operations.

The Su-34's most distinctive feature is the unusually large flight deck. Much of the design work went into crew comfort. The two crew members sit side by side in a large cabin, with the pilot-commander to the left and navigator/operator of weapons to the right in jettisonable NPP Zvezda K-36dm seats. The advantage of the side by side cockpit is that duplicate instruments are not required for each pilot, which improves efficiency and comfort. As long missions require comfort, it has pressurization that it allows to operate up to convert|10000|m|ft|sigfig=3|abbr=off|lk=off without oxygen masks, which are available for emergencies and combat situations.Gordon, Yefim. "Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker: Air Superiority Fighter" Airlife Publishing. (1999) ISBN 1-84037-029-7.] The crew members have room to stand and move about the cabin during long missions.Eden, Paul. "Su-27IB, Su-32FN and Su-34", "Encyclopedia of Modern Military Aircraft". Amber Books, 2004. ISBN 1904687849.] The space between the seats allows that they can lie down in the corridor, if necessary. A small toilet and a galley are located behind the crew seats.Spick, Mike. "The Flanker", "The Great Book of Modern Warplanes". pp. 518-519, MBI, 2000. ISBN 0-7603-0893-4.]

A long-range surveillance radar, passive detection systems, system of communication for tactical and strategical voice and data in a single platform with long-range capacity with flight refuelling, transform the Su-34 into a way of monitoring and recognition in real time and platform of command and control, forming a complete battle management system.


The Su-34 has 12 stores pylons for up to 8,000 kilograms (17,635 pounds) of ordnance, intended to include the latest Russian precision-guided weapons. It retains the Su-27/Su-30's GSh-30-1 30 mm cannon.Gordon 2006, pp. 80-81.]

The Su-34 offers enhanced crew comfort for more effective combat missions. The pilots can use a new-generation digital computer (weapons-control system) and other duplicated radio-electronic equipment. These devices ensure impressive bombing accuracy with an error margin of just several meters, regardless of the weather. The plane's eight-metric-ton ordnance load, which includes subsonic and supersonic homing missiles and glider bombs, can destroy hardened and well-camouflaged targets at a range of up to 250 km. The Su-34, due to enter service with bomber squadrons soon, has an active-safety system with artificial-intelligence elements. This system enables the plane to execute just about any stunt and combat maneuver and to fly at treetop and ground level at a maximum speed of 1,400 km/h. The Su-34 can also fly in TERCOM (Terrain Contour Matching) mode, bypassing unexpected obstacles and streaking through ground air-defense zones. The plane's crew can therefore conduct effective bombing runs, take evasive action, destroy enemy weapons and steer clear of missiles and anti-aircraft shells.

An operational mission for the Su-34 begins with a mission planning period that loads into the aircraft's two main computers the coordinates and elevations of every navigation and mission-dependent point from takeoff to landing. At each coordinate-point or time-hack, automatic switching of modes can be accomplished so that the pilots can be hands-off or involved with other parts of the mission. Data link with command aircraft, ground stations, and command ships will be maintained and where line-of-sight limits are reached these communications resort to satellites for expanded coverage. Mission updates can be passed by higher authority anytime during the flight. All types or tactical and strategic ordnance can be utilized with emphasis being placed on long range standoff weapons such as the Kh-59 Ovod/Kh-59ME cruise missiles, Kh-29 & Kh-31 anti-radiation weapons, Kh-35 Uran anti-ship weapon, and the Kh-41 Moskit long range anti-ship missile.

Su-34 is executed under the scheme "three-plane" with all-moving forward horizontal.clarifyme The airplane has an enlarged capacity of internal fuel tanks ensuring, without application PTB, practical unrefueled distance of flight of 4,000 kilometres. With three refuelings, the Su-34 is capable of covering a distance of more than 14,000 kilometres. The onboard electronics engineering ensures the flight crew with a full information about parameters of flight and enclosing space, condition of onboard systems and power plant, purposes in an air on ground, on surface of water and under water, about means of radar-tracking detection and REF of the opponent, about AD and degree of threat, created by them concerns to one from the important features of a new airplane. In addition, the Su-34 features a rearward facing radar capable of detecting, tracking, and directing R-73 or R-77 AAMs at pursuing enemy aircraft.


*Soviet Air Force 2 prototypes 1 complete

*Russian Air Force 5-10

Specifications (Su-34)

aircraft specifications

plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=jet
ref=Sukhoi data, [ [ Su-32 (Su-34) Aircraft performance] , Sukhoi] Gordon and DavisonGordon and Davison 2006, pp. 92, 95-96.] AF Technology [ [ Specifications - Su-34 (Su-27IB) Flanker Fighter Bomber Aircraft, Russia] ,]

length main=23.34 m
length alt=72 ft 2 in
span main=14.7 m
span alt=48 ft 3 in
height main=6.09 m
height alt=19 ft 5 in
area main=
area alt=
empty weight main=
empty weight alt=
loaded weight main=39,000 kg
loaded weight alt=85,980 lb
useful load main=8,000 kg
useful load alt=17,600 lb
max takeoff weight main=45,100 kg
max takeoff weight alt=99,425 lb
engine (jet)=Lyulka AL-35F
type of jet=turbofans
number of jets=2
thrust main=137.2 kN
thrust alt=30,845 lbf
thrust more=with afterburner
max speed main=
** High altitude: Mach 1.8 (1,900 km/h, 1,180 mph)
** Low altitude: Mach 1.2
max speed alt=1,400 km/h, 870 mph
max speed more=at sea level
cruise speed main=
cruise speed alt=
range main=
range alt=
range more=
combat radius main=1,100 km
combat radius alt=680 mi
ferry range main=4,000 km
ferry range alt=2,490 mi
ferry range more=
climb rate main=
climb rate alt=
ceiling main=15,000 m
ceiling alt=49,200 ft
loading main=629 kg/m²
loading alt=129 lb/ft²
* 1× 30 mm GSh-30-1 (9A-4071K) cannon, 150 rounds
* 2× wingtip rails for R-73 (AA-11 'Archer') air-to-air missiles
* 10× wing and fuselage stations for up to 8,000 kg (17,630 lb) of ordnance, including Kh-29L/T, Kh-25MT/ML, Kh-25MP, Kh-36, Kh-38, Kh-41, Kh-59M, Kh-58, Kh-31P, Kh-35 Ural, Kh-41, Kh-65S, Kh-SD, 2 Moskit, 3 Jachont air-to-ground missiles, KAB-500L/KR or KAB-1500L guided bombs, unguided bombs, B-8 rocket pods with 20 80 mm S-8 rockets, B-13 rocket pods with 5 122 mm S-13 rockets, O-25 rocket pods with 1 340 mm S-25 rocket, fuel tanks, EW- and reconnaissance pods.

ee also

* Su-27
* Su-30
* Su-33
* Su-35
similar aircraft=
* Sukhoi Su-24
* F-15E Strike Eagle
* Dassault Rafale
see also=


*Gordon, Yefim and Peter Davison. "Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker", Specialty Press, 2006. ISBN 978-1-58007-091-1.

External links

* [ Sukhoi Su-32 (Su-34) page on]
* [ Russian Su-34 web page]
* [ Su-34 page on]
* [ Su-34 on Airforce Technology]
* [ Su-34 page on]
* [ Su-34/32FN Long range fighter-bomber]
* [ Su-34 Fullback on]
* [ Sukhoi Su-34 Fullback: Russia's New Heavy Strike Fighter]
* [ "Russia gets first new fighters for 15 years as Sukhoi Su-34 debuts",]
* [ Russian Air Force to adopt Su-34 "flying tank". INFOgraphics]
* [ Video demonstrating the development and capabilities of the SU-34]

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