Tuesday, 3 June 2014

A quick guide to Flanker suffixes, Su 30 MKI, Su 30 MKK,

The Sukhoi Su 27 single-seat Flnaker entered service with the Soviet VVS in 1982 and its twin-seat trainer derivative, the Su 27 UB first flew in March 1985, entering service a short while thereafter. The twin seat combat trainer was constructed at the Irkutsk Aircraft Production Association (IAPO) factory in Irkutsk, one of the largest cities in Siberia. The Su 27 UB trainer was gradually developed by Sukhoi and the IAPO into a multi-role combat aircraft in its own right, designated Su 30. Possibly the most well-known of these was the Su 30 MKI (M=modified, K=Commercial, ie Export I=India). The Su 30 MKI incorporates Russian, Indian and Israeli avionics in a revised airframe with canard foreplanes and thrust-vector control fitted to the Lyulka AL-31 FP engines. Meanwhile the other major Soviet Su 27 construction facility, the Komsmolsk-na-Amur Aircraft Production Association (KnAAPO) developed a different two-seater variant for the Chinese without canards or TVC, dubbed Su 30 MKK (Modified, Kommercial, Kitaisky, the Russian word for China) .

I am grateful to that well known Flanker obsessive Ken Duffy for posting the following on britmodeller recently - see also his "Sukhoi Export Flankers"  in Model Aircraft Monthly, April 2009) - a quick idiot's guide to Flanker suffixes !

".. Please stop calling it a Su-30 - thats a generic name for a series of vey different aircraft. The Academy kit tries to represent a Su-30 MKK (China) or a Su-30 MK2 (Venezuela, Vietnam etc) or a Su-30 M2 (Russian AF) - these are all basically the same aircraft - with tall square tipped fins, twin nosewheels, offset IRST and IFR probes..

 ...The very different Su-30 MKI (India) Su-30 MKM (Malaysia) & Su-30 MKA (Algeria) has the shorter Su-27 UB-style fins (with bigger rudders), twin nosewheels, offset IRST, IFR probe PLUS canards and TVC (thrust vectoring control) nozzles. So 'Su-30' is meaningless without a suffix..."

 Just to add that there is also a Russian Air Force version of the Flanker with canards and shorter UB-style fins with bigger rudders designated Su-30 SM. 

The Russian AF Su-30 M2 is the same as the Su-30 MKK, below, seen at MAKS courtesy Ken Duffey..and in the air at Zhukovsky last August..

Malaysian Air Force (TUDM) Su 30 MKM supplied by the IAPO. The Malaysians requested that the Israeli avionics of the Su 30 MKI be replaced. SAAB Avitronics was the supplier chosen, providing a new suite of sensors consisting of a missile approach warning system (MAWS-200) and a laser warning system (LWS 310) The MAWS comprises two 'pyramids', one on the spine behind the air-brake, the other forward of the nose gear..photos via the Pilot.Strizhi info site

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