Hobby Master 1-72 Air Power
HA6104 Su-25 SM Russian Air Force, Latakia AB, Syria, November 2015

In 1999 Russia decided to upgrade their aging Su-25 aircraft with actual work beginning in 2001. The first of the upgraded aircraft designated Su-25SM (Stroyevoy Modernizirovannyi) Grach (Rook) flew on March 3, 2002 with the first six modernized aircraft entering service with the Russian Air Force in December 2006. The idea behind the modernization was to expand the life of the Su-25, make it All-Weather capable, more lethal and reduce operating and maintenance cost. Increased ordnance loads and a wider selection were also added.

In September 2015 Russia had a dozen Su-25s located in Syria to provide close support for ground forces and it was deemed the best suited to launch assaults on ground based targets. In November 2015 Russia stepped up its attacks in Syria on ISIS after bombings in Paris, on anti- Syrian forces and Turkeys shooting down an Su-24. The Su-25 along with various bombers and helicopters were used to prop up the Syrian government of Bashar al-Assad, a major Russian ally in the area.

General Sukhoi Su-25 Specifications
Manufacturer – Sukhoi Design Bureau
Role – Close Air Support (CAS)
Number Built – 1,024
User Countries – Approximately 28
Crew – 1 (Pilot)
Length – 15.53 m (51 ft) including nose probe Wingspan – 14.3 m (47 ft 2 in) Height – 4.8 m (15 ft 9 in)
Weight Empty – 9,800 kg (21,605 lbs) Normal Take-Off – 14,400 kg (31,835 lbs) Maximum Take-Off – 19,300 kg (42,549 lbs)
Power Plants – 2 X Soyuz/Tumansky R-195 Turbojets Producing 44.18 kN (9,921 lbf) Per Engine Maximum Speed – Mach .079 (975 km/h) (606 mph) @ Sea Level Rate Of Climb – 58 m/s (11,400 ft/min)
Service Ceiling Clean - 7,000 m (23,000 ft) With Ordnance – 5,000 m (16,000 ft)
Cruise Clean @ Altitude – 1,000 km (621 nmi) Combat Range 750 km (405 nmi) @ Sea Level With 4,400 kg (9,700 lbs) Of Ordnance and 2 External Fuel Tanks Maximum G’s – 6.5 g+
1 X 30 mm Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-30-2 Auto-Cannon With 250 Rounds SPPU-22 Gun Pods To House 2 X 23 mm Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23 Auto-Cannons With 260 Rounds Hard-Points
11 For Maximum Load of 4,400 kg (9,700 lbs) Of Various Combinations
UB-32A Rocket Pods For S-5 Rockets B-8M1 Rocket Pods For S-8 Rockets S-13 S-24 S-25
Air-To-Air K-13A R-60 R-73E
Kh-23 Kh-25ML Kh-29L
FAB-250 GPB FAB-500 GPB KAB-500K TV-Guided ZB-500 Incendiary
ASO-2V Chaff and Flare Dispensers Some Su-25 Deployed in Syria Carried 4 Rows of ASO-2V Dispensers Along Upper Tail Cone Surface Behind Vertical Stabilizer Radar – Phazoton Kopyo