Archive digitization



Aviation and Diplomacy

Frank Piasecki

NATO 1949-2009 Projekt ekspozycji w Muzeum Lotnictwa Polskiego w Krakowie



Polish Aviation Museum

31-864 Kraków,
al. Jana Pawła II 39
phone: (12) 640 99 60,
(12) 642 40 70
e-mail: info@muzeumlotnictwa.pl

a cultural institution of the Malopolska Region

Małopolska – Kraków Region


Patronage

Kraków Airport







Aeroplane: Sukhoi Su-7BKL (NATO: Fitter-A)

Sukhoi Su-7BKL (NATO: Fitter-A)
USRR
fighter-bomber
1971



  • Technical data


Span 9.3 m (30 ft 6 in)
Length 16.8 m (55 ft 1 in)
Take-off weight 13,570 kg (29,889 lb)
Maximum speed 2150 kph (1160 kt)
Ceiling 17,600 m (57,728 ft)
Range 1650 km (890 NM)
Armament two 30 mm NR-30 cannons, 5500 lb of attached bombs / rocket launchers)
Powerplant :
AL-7F1-250 turbojet, thrust with afterburner: 9600 kG (21,164 lbf)

 

In order to improve the takeoff and landing characteristics of the Su‑7 several solutions were worked out. Some were introduced into the production of the new Su-7BKL (the S-22KL) version. To facilitate taking off from unpaved runways, small metal skids were attached to the main undercarriage, protecting the wheels from sinking in the ground. Provisions were made for rocket-assisted take off with disposable auxiliary engines. The brake chute was moved from the lower part of fuselage to a larger container placed at the root of the stabiliser, a change imposed by adding a second braking chute which required more space. These changes translated to a slight improvement in the take-off and landing characteristics only. A new, zero-level ejection seat, the KS-4 was fitted, allowing for the pilot to bail out at 140 km/h. The Su-7BKL was powered with the improved AL-7F1-250 engine and the fuel load was increased, thanks to the fuselage fuel installation. During production extra hard points were added (from four to six) in consecutive series. In the same way, the earlier produced Su-7BKL and the Su-7BM were modernized.
Weapons payload was increased to 2500 kg.

The aircraft was difficult in handling, especially during landings. Another problem was enormous fuel consumption, caused by an uneconomical engine, that won the aircraft the nickname "the leaking pipeline". A serious problem was poor visibility from the cockpit, that made it difficult to find and attack targets with conventional weapons.

State trials ended in December 1963. In summer 1965, the new Su-7BKL replaced the older Su-7BM. By the end of the same year it entered service. Poland bought 30 Su-7BKL's, reinforcing its offensive power with the nuclear weapon carriers. Deliveries were made in 1966, 1968, 1971 and 1972. The Su-7 was operated by Polish military aviation untill 1990.

Using the Su-7BKL construction, an impoverished version for the Warsaw Pact members designated Su-7BMK was developed. The landing skids and the nuclear weapons attachment were omitted. Its production started 1966, ended 1970.

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