Yakovlev Yak-52

in Lithuanian National Guard service

History

About 20 (Aerostar built) Yak-52 obtained from ex-DOSAAF stocks and operated from 1991. Survivors transferred to the Air Force in 2009. Several aircraft have been recoded.


Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
17 889015     noted 1998
61 ?     noted 2000
01 (black) 844011     last noted June 1998, to LY-BRZ
02 (black) ?     noted 1998
52 (black) ?     noted 1998
02 (blue) ?     noted 1998
11 (blue) 790408     c/n 866503? preserved Kyviskes 2006
20 (blue) ?     noted 1998
32 (blue) ?     noted 2006
34 (blue) 866504     noted 2006
35 (blue) 877305     noted 2006
37 (blue) 889015     noted 2006
51 (blue) 866503     to LY-AST 2006
52 (blue) 877508     noted 2006
62 (blue) 855607     noted 2000
64 (red) 801004     noted 1998
77 (red) 844502     noted 1998
131 (red) ?     noted 1998
151 (red) 845001     noted 2000
167 (red) 845103     noted 2000
168 (red) 845102     noted 2000
02 (yel) 877305     noted ?, to ’35’ (blue)
39 (gold) 888512     noted stored Kyviskes 2006
40 (gold) 888513     noted stored Kyviskes 2006
40 (yel) 866504     noted ?, to ’34 (blue)
84 (yel) 888812     noted 2000
156 (yel) 867215     noted 1998


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • European Air Forces Directory 2007/2008 (Ian Carroll)

Other Sources

To be added.

Yakovlev Yak-55

in Lithuanian National Guard service

History

One Yak-55 aerobatic trainer obtained from ex-DOSAAF stocks and operated from 1991. Withdrawn in 2008 and sold to a civilian owner.


Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
26 (blue) 870406   1991 wfu 2008


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • European Air Forces Directory 2007/2008 (Ian Carroll)

Other Sources

To be added

Yakovlev Yak-50

in Lithuanian National Guard service

History

One Yak-50 obtained from ex-DOSAAF stocks and operated from 1991. Withdrawn in 1998.


Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
03 (red) ?     noted 1998


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • European Air Forces Directory 2007/2008 (Ian Carroll)

Other Sources

To be added

Yakovlev Yak-18T Max

in Lithuanian National Guard service

History

Two Yak-18T obtained from ex-DOSAAF stocks and operated from 1991. Survivors transferred to the Air Force in 2009.


Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
16 (blue) 870303   1991 wfu ??
33 (blue) 5201907   1991 to Air Force 2009


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • European Air Forces Directory 2007/2008 (Ian Carroll)

Other Sources

To be added

Yakovlev Yak-9W

in North Korean Air Force service

History

A twin-seat conversion trainer of the Yak-9 fighter, some of which were supplied to the DPRKAF in the late 1940s. Nothing further known.

Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
         
         
         


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • Yakovlev’s Piston-Engined Fighters – Red Star Volume 5 (Yefim Gordon & DMitry Komissarov)
  • Yakovlev Yak-9P (Robert Panek)

Other Sources

To be added.

Yakovlev Yak-18 Max

in North Korean Air Force service

History

About a dozen Yak-18s were supplied during the Korean War. Although designed as a primary flight training aircraft, the Yak-18 was operated for night bombing missions, beginning in December 1952. Two were shot down on 30 June 1953, and another on 16 July, all by Lt Guy Bordelon. It is presumed that the Yak-18 remained in service as the DPRKAF primary flight trainer until the arrival of the first Nanchang CJ-6.

One Yak-18 was flown to South Korea in June 1955 by defectors Lee Un-yong and Lee Eun-seong, and subsequently shipped to USA for evaluation purposes. The Yak-18 was assigned to the Air Technical Intelligence Center (ATIC) and Wright-Patterson Flight Test Division in October 1955, being designated as the T-10G, carrying the serial number 47-715. No less than 110 flight hours were accumulated, but on 26 June 1957, the Yak-18 was grounded. The fabric covering did not pass the specifications of T.O. 1-1-25. As a result, the USAF Museum received the Yak-18, which was transferred to the National Air & Space Museum on 8 June 1960. It is said that this particular Yak-18 was used in a ‘Bedcheck Charlie’ raid against Inchon on 16/17 June 1953. This aircraft still exists, being preserved – albeit in storage – by the National Air & Space Museum.

Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
         
         
         


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • World Air Forces Directory 2009/2010 (Ian Carroll)

Other Sources

To be added.

Yakovlev Yak-9 Frank

in North Korean Air Force service

History

The first North Korean pilots initiated training in the USSR on the Yak-9 as early as 1946. After the completion of the training, the first Yak-9s were supplied to North Korean air arm. Although a few twin-seat Yak-9Ws was supplied (which see), the main variant supplied was the Yak-9P. The Yak-9P was an all-metal variant, of which 801 (29 pre-series aircraft were of mixed construction) were produced in 1947/48. By mid-1950, some 79 Yak-9s, the majority being of the P variant, was in service. Another variant reported in North Korean service is the Yak-9U, which preceded the Yak-9P on the production lines. The exact quantity of Yak-9s supplied to the DPRKAF in unknown, although the total could possibly be as high as 100.

Eighteen Yak-9s were claimed as shot down during the Korean War, mostly in 1950. An additional number of Yak-9s were destroyed in air raids against airfields. It may be presumed that the final Yak-9s were eventually replaced by the MiG-15 jet fighter. One Yak-9 is preserved at the Homeland Liberation Museum at Pyongyang.

One Yak-9P was captured in airworthy condition by US forces at Kimpo airfield on 17 September 1950, and subsequently shipped to USA for evaluation. It arrived at Buffalo for rebuild by the Cornell Aeronautical Laboratory. The Yak-9U was assigned the serial number T2-3002, with the first flight in US hands occurring on 21 September 1951. In all, 23 hours and 55 minutes of flying time was accumulated in the Yak-9. The last flight took place on 12 December. Following the conclusion of the tests, the Yak-9 was allotted to the USAF Museum in the mid-1950s. Sadly, due to lack of storage space, it was scrapped in 1958. Interestingly, it is alleged that the Yak was offered back to the Soviet Union as a gift by the USAF!

Individual Details

Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
Red 3       Yak-9P shot down
Black 32       Yak-9P captured at Kimpo, and shipped to USA for evaluation. Scrapped in 1958
Black 49       Destroyed on the ground
Black 15       Yak-9U


Pictures

None available at present.

More Information

References

  • Yakovlev’s Piston-Engined Fighters – Red Star Volume 5 (Yefim Gordon & DMitry Komissarov)
  • Yakovlev Yak-9P (Robert Panek)

Other Sources

To be added.

Yakovlev Yak-41 ‘Freestyle’

Aircraft Profile
Yak-141 in the hover – rear exhaust nozzle
faces downwards. (photo, John Hayles)

Development

The Yak-41 is a supersonic V/STOL (Vertical/Short Take-Off and Landing) naval fighter. Although it never entered operational service, some of it’s advanced technology will see application on Lockheed-Martin’s F-35 fighter.

Yakovlev’s first experiment with jet-lift was the primitive Yak-36 (NATO: Freehand), which made its first vertical take-off on 24 March 1966. Vertical take-off on this aircraft was achieved by locating a swivelling jet exhaust nozzle for each of it’s two engines directly under the aircraft’s centre of gravity. The experience thus gained led to the larger Yak-38 naval fighter-bomber (NATO: Forger), which first flew in 1970 and entered service with the AV-MF (Fleet Naval Aviation) on 6 October 1976. This time, twin swivelling exhaust nozzles for the single main engine were combined with two dedicated lift engines located in the forward fuselage. Unfortunately, the technology incorporated in the Yak-38 was still immature and the type encountered numerous technical and operational problems.

Lack of thrust from the Yak-38’s engines severely limited the possible weapons payload and the amount of fuel that could be carried, whilst high fuel consumption resulted in very poor range. No radar was carried, to save weight, which limited it’s ability to carry out air defence missions. In addition, aircraft serviceability remained low throughout the type’s service life.

While development work on the Yak-38 was still proceeding, Yakovlev was authorised in 1975 to begin work on a more capable replacement, for use in the fleet air defence role from AV-MF aircraft carriers. After exploring a number of enhancements to the Yak-38 airframe it was concluded that only a much larger airframe with more powerful engines could hope to provide the neccessary performance. Designated Yak-41, the resulting new design retained the same basic layout as the Yak-38 but was almost 30% larger and twice as heavy (in empty weight) as its predecessor. A Fazotron S-41M Zhuk radar was installed in the nose.

To power the Yak-41, a new engine was developed. The R-79 was fitted with an afterburner to allow supersonic performance, while the single swivelling exhaust nozzle was located between two deep tail booms. Two new RD-41 lift engines were installed behind the cockpit, inclined forwards by 5 degrees and exhausting through nozzles which could deflect by +/- 12.5 degrees to give thrust vectoring. During a vertical take-off or landing the main nozzle pointed 90 degrees downwards, while for a short take-off it was deflected at 63 degrees.

In 1977 the decision was made to proceed with full development of the Yak-41, and in the following year construction began of the aircraft carrier Baku (later renamed Admiral Gorshkov), which was expected to include the Yak-41 in it’s air wing.

In 1985 it was decided to make the Yak-41 a multi-purpose fighter rather than a dedicated interceptor, under the designation Yak-41M. The design of the additional aircraft systems required caused a delay in the development programme. Two static test Yak-41Ms were build – the first (48-0) was used for static and fatigue tests, while the second (48-1, bort ’48’ yellow) was employed performing engine ground running trials in both cruise and VTOL modes. These two airframes were followed by two flight-rated airframes ’75’ white (48-2) and ’77’ white (48-3).

The first flight was made on 9 March 1987 in conventional mode, and the first hover was carried out on 29 December 1989. During April 1991 a series of flights gained 12 FAI recognised world records for VTOL aircraft, which were recorded under the designation Yak-141. This designation was later re-used for the proposed export variant of the aircraft.

On 26 September 1991 the first landing on board Admiral Gorshkov was successfully accomplished. Unfortunately, on 5 October 1991, aircraft ’77’ white experienced a landing accident aboard the carrier which resulted in it being grounded. Economic reality caught up with the Yak-41M in November 1991 when a drastically reduced defence budget for the newly created CIS left the programme without any further state funds.

In September 1992 aircraft ’75’ white was repainted as ‘141’ white and displayed at the Farnborough Air Show, in an attempt to attract foreign funding, but this ploy was unsuccessful and development ceased in 1993.

The production version was planned to feature uprated engines allowing take-off with more weapons or additional fuel. A prototype two-seat trainer was never completed. An advanced stealthy version designated Yak-43 remained only a project.

During the summer of 1995, Lockheed Martin announced a teaming arrangement with Yakovlev to assist in the former’s bid for the JAST (Joint Adanced Strike Technology) competition. Yakovlev’s knowledge of jet lift technology was to prove invaluable. Lockheed Martin was subsequently selected to build a demonstrator aircraft, the X-35, which went on to win the JSF (Joint Strike Fighter) competition and will soon become a production fighter as the F-35.

One of the key problems with the Yak-41M jet-lift system was the need to engage afterburner for vertical take-off or landing. At land bases this soon resulted in damage to the runway, while the Admiral Gorshkov was fitted with a special water-cooling system to absorb the heat from the jet blast. Hence, the Yak-41M was in no sense a Harrier-style go-anywhere aircraft.

Variants

Requirement Specification:
Manufacturers Designation: Izdelye 48, Izdelye 48M

Development History:
‘Ram-T’ Interim designation assigned by NATO to Yak-41M.
Yak-41 Various alternative configurations explored, including: single lift/cruise engine with single vectoring nozzle, lift engines ahead of cockpit, directable rectangular afterburner exhaust or Yak-45 variant.
Yak-41 Original dedicated interceptor design. [Izdelye 48]
Yak-41M Planned production version with added anti-ship capability. 2 flying prototypes built. Production aircraft would have had uprated R-79M engines and flight refuelling probe. [Izdelye 48M]
Yak-41U Tandem two-seat trainer version – prototype not completed.
Yak-43 Projected advanced STOL version – land based for VVS use. Samara NK-321 engine from Tu-160 bomber + 2 RD-41 lift engines. Trapezoidal wing, lengthened fuselage with increased fuel load and internal weapons bay. Reduced radar signature. [Izdelye 201]
Yak-141 Designation applied to Yak-41M for record breaking flights. Later used as export designation for Yak-41M.
Yak-141M Designation for proposed export variant of Yak-41M. Increased STO weight to 21,500 kg (47,399 lb). Improved avionics.
The side view emphasises the length of the
Yak-141. (Photo, John Hayles)
Twin-boom tail with main nozzle in-between.
(Photo, John Hayles)

History

Key Dates:
1975    Government directive to start work on Yak-38 replacement.
1977    Detailed design of the Yak-41 begins.
1985    Decision in favour of Yak-41M multi-purpose variant.
1986    Second ground test airframe (bort 48 yellow) begins engine runs.
1986    Programme first noticed by the West at Zhukhovskii. Temporarily named ‘Ram-T’.
9 March 1987    Yak-41M first flight from rolling take-off (bort 75 white).
Spring 1988    NATO reporting name ‘Freestyle’ assigned.
12 April 1989    Second prototype (bort 77 white) makes first flight from rolling take-off.
Summer 1989    Mach 1 exceeded for the first time.
29 December 1989    First hovering flight (bort 77 white).
13 June 1990    First full profile flight (VTO – cruise – VL).
April 1991    Andrei Sintsyn sets 12 world records for VTOL aircraft as ‘Yak-141’.
26 September 1991    First landing aboard aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov.
5 October 1991    Aircraft 77 white damaged in hard landing on Admiral Gorshkov.
November 1991    Russian government funding support ceases.
September 1992    ‘Yak-141’ appears at Farnborough Air Show in UK.
1993    Planned delivery date for first production aircraft – cancelled.
1993    Work on Yak-41 terminated.
Summer 1995    Programme temporarily revived under Lockheed-Martin contract.

Operators

Military Operators

Russia – Naval Air Force (AV-MF) (Yak-141)

Government Agencies

None  

Civilian Operators

None  
Sharp-edged supersonic air intakes and
radar nose. (Photo, John Hayles)
The lift fan doors are still open in this underside
view. (Photo, John Hayles)

Specifications

Yakovlev Yak-41 ‘Freestyle’
Crew: 1 pilot
Dimensions: Length 60 ft 0 ins (18.30 m); Height 16 ft 5 in (5.00 m); Wing Span 33 ft 1.75 in (10.10 m), 19 ft 4.25 in (5.90 m) wings folded; Wing Area 341.56 ft2 (31.7 m2)
Engines: One Soyuz/Kobchenko R-79V-300 vectored-thrust lift/cruise turbofan developing 34,170 lb (15,500 kg) with afterburning or 23,148.5 lb (10,500 kg) dry, plus two Rybinsk/Kuznetsov RD-41 turbofan lift engines each rated at a 9,039lb (4,100kg) dry
Weights: Empty equipped 25,684 lb (11,650 kg); VTO max take-off 34,833 lb (15,800 kg); STO max take-off 42,990 lb (19,500 kg)
Armament:One 30 mm Gsh-30-1 cannon under the port side fuselage with 120 rounds, four underwing hardpoints (all inboard of the wing fold) rated at (1102 lb) 500 kg each for R-77/AA-12 ‘Adder’ or R-27/AA-10 ‘Alamo’ radar-guided medium-range missiles and R-73/AA-11 ‘Archer’ short-range IR-guided missiles, or Kh-31A (AS-17 Krypton) and Kh-35 anti-shipping missiles, or Kh-31P and Kh-58 (AS-11 Kilter) anti-radar missiles, bombs or unguided rockets and one under-fuselage hardpoint for a conformal fuel tank. VTO max external load 2,204 lb (1,000 kg), STO max external load 5,732 lb (2,600 kg), max external fuel 2000 litres (440 Imp Gal) or 3,858 lb (1,750 kg).
Performance: Maximum level speed 675 kts (777 mph, 1,250 km/hr) at sea level, 971 kts (1118 mph, 1,800 km/hr) at 36,089 ft (11,000 m), Mach 1.8 maximum; Initial rate of climb 49,213 ft/min (250 m/sec); Service ceiling more than 49,215 ft (15,000 m); VTO clean range at sea level (no external weapons) 351 nm (404 miles, 650 km), with 4,409 lb (2,000 kg) weapon load and take-off run of 394 ft (120 m) 372 nm (690 km), VTO clean range at 32,808-39,370 ft (10-12,000 m) 755 nm (870 miles, 1,400 km), max range with external fuel and short take-off 1,133 nm (2,100 km), range with vertical takeoff and internal fuel 755 nm (1,400 km).
Note the open intake blow-in doors during
take-off. (Photo, John Hayles)
The Farnborough display started with a
rolling take-off. (Photo, John Hayles)

Production

Design Centre

Head of Design Team: S.G. Mordovin & A.B. Zvyagintsev, later Konstantin Popovich
Design Office: A.S. Yakovlev OKB, 68 Leningradsky Prospeckt, 125315 Moscow

Manufacture

Version Quantity Assembly Location Time Period
Yak-41 4 Yak OKB, Moscow 1985-1989
Total: 4    

Total Produced: 4 a/c (1 structural article + 1 ground test article + 2 flight test examples)
[Small Yak-41M production batch ordered early 1991 from Smolensk factory, but cancelled November 1991]

Production List

To be added.

More Information

Books

‘SOVIET V/STOL AIRCRAFT: Struggle for a Shipborne Combat Capability’ [Order this book from Amazon UK]
by Michael J. Hirschberg
Published by AIAA, USA, June 1997 ISBN: 1563472481
* Technical study of the Yak-36, Yak-38 and Yak-41.

‘Yakovlev’s V/STOL Fighters – Yak-36, Yak-38, Yak-41 and Yak-141 (Aerofax series)’ [Order this book from Amazon UK]
by John Fricker and Piotr Butowski
Published by Midland Publishing Ltd, UK, Nov 1995 ISBN: 1 85780 041 9
* Well illustrated profile of the three V/STOL types.

‘Brassey’s World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1996/97’ [Order this book from Amazon UK]
by Micheal Taylor
Published by Brassey’s (UK) Ltd, 1996 ISBN: 1 85753 198 1
* Includes a detailed description of the Yak-41.

‘Yakovlev Aircraft since 1924’ [Order this book from Amazon UK]
by Bill Gunston & Yefim Gordon
Published by Putnam Aeronautical Books, 1997 ISBN: 1 85177 872 0
* Includes a short chapter on the Yak-41.

‘International Air Power Review, Volume 10’ [Order this book from Amazon UK]
Published by AIRtime Publishing, 2003 ISBN: 1 880588 58 7
* Includes feature article on the Yak-36, Yak-38 and Yak-41.

Magazines

‘Aviamaster’ N7 2003
* Russian text feature article.

Links

Yakovlev Yak-141
(Specification, description and some close-up photos)

Le Yak-41M
(Well illustrated French-text description of the Yak-41)

Yak-141 Freestyle
(Short description, specification and 2 photos)

Yakovlev Yak-141
(Short description, specification, 3-view)

Airliners.net
(9 Yak-41 photos)

Yak-141
(Yakovlev design bureau official description and small photos)

Freestyle Modelling
(Building Yak-41 scale model + 14 close-up photos of actual aircraft)

Yak-141 (Yak-41M)
(15 Yak-41 photos)

Soviet Jet VTOL
(Well-written profile of the Yak-36, Yak-38 & Yak-41)

Yak-141 Freestyle
(Description, specification, 2 photos)

Shop

Flight Simulator Models:
To be added.

Scale Models:
To be added.

Scale Drawings:
See the ‘Aviamaster’ magazine listed above.

Videos:

None known.