Once upon a time the Su-24 fighter jet downed by Turkey was one of Soviet's best

Published 24.11.2015 15:18
Updated 24.11.2015 15:25
Once upon a time the Su-24 fighter jet downed by Turkey was one of Soviet's best

A Russian Su-24 fighter jet was shot down on Tuesday November 24, 2015 by Turkish Air Forces as part of rules of engagement and violation of airspace close to the Syrian border. So what is a Su-24? Who makes them? Who owns them? When were they made?

Produced from 1967 to 1993, the Sukhoi Su-24 is a supersonic, all-weather attack aircraft/interdictor developed in the Soviet Union during the late 1960's. The aircraft features a variable-sweep wing, twin-engines and a side-by-side seating arrangement for its two crew members. It was the first of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics' (USSR) aircraft to carry an integrated digital navigation/attack system. It remains in service with Russia and various other countries that it was exported to.

The Su-24 aircraft could fly at a maximum speed of 2,320 km/h (1,440 mph), Mach 2.18, at altitude and a ceiling of 17,500 m (57,400 ft).

Substantial numbers of ex-Soviet Su-24s remain in service with Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Ukraine. In 2008, roughly 415 were in service with Russian forces, split 321 with the Russian Air Force and 94 with the Russian Navy.

Today over a dozen countries still use the Su-24. Algeria, Iran, Russia, Syria, Ukraine, Sudan, Angola, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and Uzbekistan are among the countries who still keep the fighter in service.

The Su-24 has seen operation in 10 different occasions, the first being the Soviet War in Afghanistan in 1984. Since then the fighter jet has seen duty in the Lebanese civil war, Operation Desert Storm, Tajik and Afghan civil wars, Second Chechen War, 2008 South Ossetia War, 2011 Libyan civil war, Syrian civil war, 2014 Ukrainian conflict and the most recent 2015 Russian military operation in Syria.

Specifications of Su-24

• Crew: Two (pilot and weapons system operator)
• Length: 22.53 m (73 ft 11 in)
• Wingspan: 17.64 m extended, 10.37 m maximum sweep (57 ft 10 in / 34 ft 0 in)
• Height: 6.19 m (20 ft 4 in)
• Wing area: 55.2 m² (594 ft²)
• Empty weight: 22,300 kg (49,165 lb)
• Loaded weight: 38,040 kg (83,865 lb)
• Max. takeoff weight: 43,755 kg (96,505 lb)
• Powerplant: 2 × turbojets
• Dry thrust: 75 kN (16,860 lbf) each
• Thrust with afterburner: 109.8 kN (24,675 lbf) each
• Fuel capacity: 11,100 kg (24,470 lb)


• Maximum speed: 1,315 km/h (710 kn, 815 mph, Mach 1.08) at sea level; 1,654 km/h (Mach 1.35 ) at high altitude
• Combat radius: 615 km in a low-flying (lo-lo-lo) attack mission with 3,000 kg (6,615 lb) ordnance and external tanks
• Ferry range: 2,775 km (1,500 nm, 1,725 mi)
• Service ceiling: 11,000 m (36,090 ft)
• Rate of climb: 150 m/s (29,530 ft/min)
• Wing loading: 651 kg/m² (133 lb/ft²)
• Thrust/weight: 0.60
• G-force limit: 6 g
• Takeoff roll: 1,550 m (5,085 ft)
• Landing roll: 1,100 m (3,610 ft)

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter