Yakovlev Yak-28

The Yakovlev Yak-28 was a swept wing, turbojet-powered combat aircraft used by the Soviet Union. Produced initially as a bomber, it was also manufactured in reconnaissance, electronic warfare, interceptor, and trainer versions, known by the NATO reporting names Brewer, Firebar, and Maestro respectively. It was based on prototypes first flown on 5 March 1958, it began to enter service in 1960. 


Yakovlev Yak-28
Class Aircraft
Type Bomber
Manufacturer Yakovlev
Origin Russia (USSR)
Country Name Origin Year
Russia (USSR) 1958
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Russia (USSR) 1960 1993 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Yakovlev 1180 View

It was first seen by the West at the Tushino air show on May Day 1961. Western analysts initially believed it to be a fighter rather than an attack aircraft - and a continuation of the Yak-25M, at that - and it was designated Flashlight. After its actual role was realized, the Yak-28 bomber series was redesignated Brewer. 

Total production of all Yak-28s was 1180. The Yak-28P was withdrawn in the early 1980s, but trainer and other versions soldiered on until after the fall of the Soviet Union, flying until at least 1992. The Brewer econnaissance and electronic counter-measures (ECM) aircraft were eventually replaced by variants of the Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer.

It was in a Yak-28 that Captain Boris Kapustin and Lieutenant Yuri Yanov performed an heroic act on 6 April 1966; when one of the engines on their aircraft stopped, they managed to divert their aircraft from a housing estate in West Berlin into Lake Stößensee. Both heroes were posthumously awarded the medal of the Red Banner. Their bodies, along with the wreckage, were raised from the lake by British troops, while British 'Brixmis' agents covertly retrieved important top secret material from the plane including the engines, (which were flown back to the Royal Aircraft Establishment at Farnborough, England,) and the radar system.

The Yak-28P was withdrawn in the early 1980s, but trainer and other versions soldiered on until after the fall of the Soviet Union, flying until at least 1992. The reconnaissance and ECM aircraft were eventually replaced by variants of the Sukhoi Su-24.

Role Medium bomber
Reconnaissance
Electronic warfare
Interceptor
National origin Soviet Union
Manufacturer Yakovlev
First flight 5 March 1958
Introduction 1960
Retired 1992 (Russia)
Primary users Soviet Air Forces
Soviet Air Defence Forces
Russian Air Force
Ukrainian Air Force
Number built 1180


General characteristics

  • Crew: two
  • Length: 21.6 m (75 ft 0 in)
  • Wingspan: 12.50 m (41 ft 0 in)
  • Height: 3.95 m (12 ft 11 in)
  • Wing area: 37.6 m (405 ft)
  • Empty weight: 13,150 kg (29,000 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 15,000 kg (33,000 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 20,000 kg (44,000 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2 x Tumansky R-11 afterburning turbojets, 46 kN dry, 62 kN with afterburning (10,140 lbf dry, 13,670 lbf with afterburning) each

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 1,200 km/h (750 mph)
  • Range: 2,500 km (1,550 miles)
  • Service ceiling 16,750 m (55,000 ft)
  • Rate of climb: m/s (ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 531 kg/m (108.6 lb/ft)
  • Thrust/weight: 0.62

Armament

  • 2 x R-98M (AA-3 Anab) air-to-air missiles, usually one R-98TM infrared and one R-98RM semi-active radar homing
  • 2 x K-13A (AA-2 Atoll) short-range missiles (occasionally fitted)

End notes