The Battle Is Getting Fierce, Ukrainian Su-24 Fencer Fighter Equipped With Laser-Guided Missile

The Battle Is Getting Fierce, Ukrainian Su-24 Fencer Fighter Equipped With Laser-Guided Missile
Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer Fighter Equipped With Laser-Guided Missile

Kiev - Ukraine is confirmed to have lost at least 11 Su-24M Fencer fighter jets during the war with Russia at the end of February 2022. However, Ukraine's latest news shows it still has a number of fully armed Su-24 Fencer fighter jets, including Kh-25 air-to-ground missiles. laser-guided.

Although relatively rarely seen, the role of the Su-24 Fencer fighter provides Ukraine with fast jet precision strike capabilities that the MiG-29 Fulcrum and Su-27 Flanker fighter jets lack. The swing wing fighter aircraft also added a large capacity 3,000 liter external fuel tank at the bottom.

In a video that has gone viral on social media, the Su-24M Fencer-D is painted yellow, blue and what appears to be dark yellow paint applied to the steering wheel. Similar high visibility identification markings, which may be intended to prevent fire incidents, especially when flying low.

Quoted by The War Zone, the most interesting thing is the two air-to-ground missiles carried on the swing wing. The weapon is from the Kh-25 series, a family of Soviet-era modular weapons available with a variety of different seeker heads.

Su-24 Fencer Fighter Equipped With Laser-Guided Missile

The missile appears to be the Kh-25ML, known in the West as the AS-10 Karen, which uses a semi-active laser seeker. Some observers say the missile is an example of the Kh-25MR, which uses a primitive radio command guidance package on the rear of the missile.

It seems that the assessment could be wrong, given the Kh-25ML missiles are still widely available and more practical to use in combat. The missile does not appear to have the elongated radome associated with the Kh-25MP (AS-12 Kegler), which is an anti-radiation missile with a passive radar seeker for targeting the radar of enemy surface-to-air missile systems.

Ukraine At over 12 feet long, the Kh-25ML missile has a maximum range of 6.2 miles and flies at a maximum speed of over 1,900 mph. The missile has a launch weight of 650 pounds, of which the high-explosive warhead comprises nearly 200 pounds.

The Kh-25 series missiles, by now, are pretty old fashioned. This is because Ukraine has more reliable precision-guided ammunition for the Su-24. These include laser-guided KAB-1500L bombs and laser-guided Kh-29L (AS-14 Kedge) missiles, as well as TV-guided KAB-500Kr bombs and Kh-29T missiles.

Anti-radiation missiles, to destroy enemy air defense systems, have also been available in the past. Including the Kh-58 (AS-12 Kilter) and, reportedly, the Kh-31P (AS-17 Krypton) capable of flying Mach 3.5.

In this case, it is not clear why the Kh-25ML was chosen. This could reflect the depletion of other precision-guided ammunition supplies, or it could be that smaller weapons are preferred, based on the type of target. Perhaps it was a moving target, which could have been fired using a laser guidance system.

Ukraine is reported to have only 6 Su-24M and 5 Su-24MR ready for service between 2006 and 2010. The situation has improved slightly in 2014, the operational fleet is reported to consist of 13 Su-24M and seven Su-24MR. Both the Su-24M fighter jet for attack and the reconnaissance version of the Su-24MR, based at Starokostyantyniv.

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