The Su-27 (NATO designation Flanker) is the front line fighter aircraft designed by the Sukhoi Design Bureau. The export version is the Su-27SK.
The aircraft is equipped to operate autonomously in combat over hostile territory, in escort of deep penetration strike aircraft and in the suppression of enemy airfields. The aircraft provides general air defense in cooperation with ground and airborne control stations.
Su-27 is in service with Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Vietnam, and is built under license in China and is designated the F-11. A variant, the Su-30MK, has been sold to India with licensed local production to begin in 2000.
The aircraft is equipped with a 30 mm gun and a range of missiles, rockets and bombs mounted externally on ten hardpoints.
The aircraft's infra-red search and track system, laser rangefinder, radar and helmet mounted target designator provide detection, tracking and attack capability.
The range of air-to-air missiles carried by the Su-27K aircraft includes:
The R-27R1 (NATO designation AA-10A Alamo-A) and the R-27T1 (AA-10B Alamo-B) has a range from 0.5 to 60 kilometers, with the aircraft flying from 20,000 to 27,000 m altitude and speeds up to 3,500 km/hour.
The R-73E (NATO designation AA-11 Archer) provides all-aspect target engagement in close, high maneuverability combat with load factor up to 12g. The range is from 0.3 to 20 kilometers.
Ordnance for air-to-ground missions include:
The Su-27SK is equipped with a coherent pulse Doppler radar, Phazotron N001 Zhuk, with track-while-scan and look-down/shoot-down capability. The range of the radar against targets size 3 square meters is over 100 km in the forward hemisphere and 40 kilometers in the rear hemisphere. The radar has the capacity to search, detect and track up to 10 targets with automatic threat assessment and prioritization.
ELECTRO-OPTICAL SEARCH AND TRACK
The aircraft has an OEPS-27 electro-optic system which includes an infra-red search and track (IRST) sensor collimated with a laser rangefinder. The range of the electro-optical system against a reheated target is from 40 to 100 kilometers depending on the aspect angle presented by the target.
The Su-27SK is equipped with a new electronic countermeasures suite for individual aircraft, and for mutual and group protection in the forward and rear hemispheres. The countermeasures system includes a pilot illumination radar warning receiver, chaff and infra-red decoy dispensers, and an active multimode jammer located in the wing-tip pods.
The Su-27SK is powered by two AL-31F turbofan engines designed by the Lyulka Engine Design Bureau (NPO Saturn). Each engine has two air intakes, a primary wedge intake and a louvered auxiliary air intake. The twin-shaft turbo-fan engine has after-turbine flow mixing, a common afterburner, an all mode variable area jet exhaust nozzle, an independent start and a main electronic control and a reserve hydromechanical engine mode control system. The engine nacelles have a semimonocoque configuration. The high temperature sections of the engines are made of titanium alloy.
The cockpit is equipped with a single zero/zero ejection seat type Zvesda K-36MD. The pilot is equipped with a helmet mounted target designator.
The fly-by-wire system in the Su-27SK uses quadruple redundancy of transducers, units and interfaces of the vital control channels to perform the following functions:
AUTOMATIC FLIGHT CONTROL
The automatic flight control is linked to the navigation system, weapon control and command guidance equipment. The automatic flight control carries out:
The radio communications suite provides:
The Su-27SK is a highly integrated twin-finned aircraft. The airframe is constructed of titanium and high strength aluminum alloys. The engine nacelles are fitted with trouser fairings to provide a continuous streamlined profile between the engine nacelles and the tail beams. The fins and horizontal tail consoles are attached to tail beams. The central beam section between the engine nacelles consists of the equipment compartment, fuel tank and the brake parachute container.
The fuselage head is of semimonocoque construction and includes the cockpit, radar compartments and the avionics bay. The glove, i.e. the leading section of the wing root, on the starboard side houses a 30 mm GSh-301 gun with 150 rounds of ammunition.
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A detailed history of Su-27
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