HESA Azarakhsh

(HESA) Azarakhsh is Iran's first domestically manufactured combat jet fighter. It is widely regarded as a reverse engineered variant of the Northrop F-5 Freedom Fighter/Tiger II.

The Azarakhsh was developed in Isfahan by the Iranian army, Defense Ministry, and aircraft-manufacturing company HESA.


HESA Azarakhsh
Class Aircraft
Type Fighter
Manufacturer Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company
Origin Iran (Persia)
Country Name Origin Year
Iran (Persia) 1997
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Iran (Persia) 1997 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company View

In April 1997 Iranian Brigadier General Arasteh, a deputy head of the General Staff of the Armed Forces declared that Iran had successfully designed, constructed, and tested its first fighter aircraft. By late 1997 Iran had begun mass-producing the aircraft and by mid-2000 four aircraft were said to be undergoing operational tests, with production proceeding at a rate of around ten aircraft per year.

Iran has yet to release any additional information about the aircraft and its capabilities are unknown.

On May 17, 2000, Iran's acting commander of the Air Force said that Azarakhsh had reached mass-production stage. On August 5, 2007, Azarakhsh conducted a successful test flight. On August 6, 2007, Ministry of Defense Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar said, "[Azarakhsh] is now at the stage of industrial production and its mass production will start in the future."

Role Strike fighter
Manufacturer HESA
Introduction 1997
Status In service
Primary user Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force
Number built First Generation: 6
2nd Generation: 4
3rd Generation: 1
4th and 5th generation: unknown
Developed from Northrop F-5E Tiger II
Developed into HESA Saeqeh

End notes