38 downed aircraft of one model, 23 Russian, 15 Ukrainian. Who is it?
KYIV ($1=36.69 Ukrainian Hryvnias) — A model aircraft fills the daily list of downed combat aircraft in the war in Ukraine. 38 aircraft of this model have already been destroyed. According to the online portal Onyx, 23 aircraft of this model were lost to the Russian Air and Space Forces [VKS] and 15 to the Ukrainian Air Force [UAF].
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This is the Sukhoi Su-25 Grach [Frogfoot] which is a subsonic, single-seat, twin-engine jet aircraft developed in the Soviet Union by Sukhoi. The last downed one is from yesterday and belongs to the inventory of the Ukrainian Air Force. The Ukrainian Su-25 was shot down on November 8, over near the town of Ugledar in Donetsk. This information comes from Lieutenant-General Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the defense ministry, an air defense system in the Russian-backed self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic.
The Su-25 is a Soviet subsonic, single-seat, twin-engine jet aircraft that is still in service in dozens of countries, most of which have limited defense budgets and retain the aircraft’s combat capability. In 1975, the Su-25 made its first test flight, and in 1981 it was officially introduced to the countries of the Soviet bloc. This aircraft has documented participation in almost all small and large military conflicts in the world: from the Soviet-Afghan war to the war in Ukraine in 2022.
The Su-25 is piloted by one pilot. The dimensions of the aircraft are as follows: Length: 15.53 m [50 ft 11 in] [including nose probe], wingspan: 14.36 m [47 ft 1 in], height: 4.8 m [15 ft 9 in], and wing area: 33.7 m2 [363 sq ft]. The aircraft is powered by two Soyuz / Tumansky R-195 turbojet engines, 44.18 kN [9,930 lbf] thrust each.
With one refueling, it can fly a distance of 1000 km, and the maximum speed that the aircraft can develop during the flight is 975 km / h [606 mph, 526 kn]. Its G limit is +6.5. The aircraft is armed with one 30 mm Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-30-2 autocannon with 250 rounds, SPPU-22 gun pods for two 23 mm Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23 autocannons with 260 rounds, an anti-radar missile, air-to-ground missiles, air-to-air and controllable bombs or free-falling bombs.
Some media claim that Bulgaria is the country that donated 14 Su-25 aircraft to the Ukrainian Air Force. This has been done through third parties and in parts. This is claimed by the Spanish online media InfoDifensa.
It is said…
According to the Spanish, the delivery took place in recent months, as “Bulgaria sends them in disassembled form through third parties,” InfoDifensa wrote. “Perhaps these are the ones to which the press secretary of the United States Department of Defense John Kirby was referring when he revealed last April that Ukrainian forces already had more fixed-wing combat aircraft in the second half of April than two weeks earlier,” InfoDefensa also writes on the topic of Bulgarian combat aircraft.
BulgarianMilitary.com recalls that at the end of April the USA announced that Ukraine “has more fixed-wing fighters now than they did two weeks ago.” Kirby avoids clarifying the origin of the additional devices but admits that this is due to foreign aid. The fact that the country’s fleet [Ukraine – ed.] has increased, he said, “is not a coincidence, because other nations that have experience with this type of aircraft have been able to help them launch more aircraft.”
At the time, the Pentagon spokesman hinted that these were devices that would already be available to Kyiv and that they had already received certain spare parts and assistance that would allow them to be returned to the air. However, during a press conference held at the time, Kirby added after warning that he did not want to “get into what other nations are offering” because of the danger it could pose if Moscow concluded that the supply of that material implies direct NATO involvement in the conflict.
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