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Su-24 Flight Tests

The Soviet sweep-wing made its maiden flight in January 1970, when it was officially designated the Su-24, although five more years elapsed before it went into service. The delay in operational development and adoption was due to the number of accidents during testing, especially in the early stages, caused largely by the number of features not previously used in Soviet aviation.

There were quite a number of flight accidents during testing SU-24, especially in the early stages due to the fact that both the aircraft structure was embodied many new solutions, not previously used in the domestic aviation. It was first created by a complex set of combat aircraft, integrate the latest advances in aircraft and engine, aerodynamics, aviation equipment and weapons. At first it impacted nedovedennost individual elements of the design and especially the power plant, the lack of information about the possible behavior of the machine in certain flight conditions. Every accident or disaster gave very important information, which sometimes can not be obtained in the calculations or provide for the design of the structure.

The price of such information often was a life. After each incident, the Design Bureau and at the production plant immediately take measures to eliminate the identified defects and completion of construction. All this has allowed over time to bring it structure to a predetermined level of reliability and to minimize the probability of failure of the material part in the operationFrequent system failures that accompany the beginning of the biography of almost any modern aircraft, forced to think about the measures to increase safety of operation.

Flight tests of the Su-24 was accompanied by a large number of flight accidents. A total of 10 planes were lost to varoius causes, including: design faults (breakage of Rotary traction pylon, destroying the mechanism turning left wing, longitudinal plane control system failure), all others were due engine Al-21F3 (Titanium fires and explosions of the combustion chambers). In addition, 4 aircraft Su-24M aircraft were lost in flight tests.

Unfortunately, this was accompanied by the loss of life. The deaths of 13 test pilots and navigators, the DESIGN BUREAU of P.O. Sukhoi, NAZ and AIR FORCES GNIKI: V. Lavrentiev, N. Ruhldko, V. Krecetov, M. Yurov, Voloshin, Y. Yumashev, V. Kuznetsov, L. Sorokin, A. Kosarev, Kondratyev, A. Vlasov, V. Nikitin, G. Gridusov. Ejected and survived 8 persons: A. Scherbakov, Dashkov, V. Plotnikov, V. Glincikov, A. Danilin, Trays, M. Sattarov, Fr. Choi.

When Su-24 entered service the rate of accidents dropped to 5-6 per year. Basically failed equipment. Typical crash was due to engine malfunction.

One of the "bottlenecks" in testing was a big difference between the maximum permitted take-off and maximum landing weight - 39700 and 24000 kg. In order to ensure a fast discharge of "extra" fuel, had to make a rather unsightly pipe sticking out of the rear fuselage more than a meter. Later it was replaced by two much smaller pipes with a special nozzle, increases the velocity of the fuel regardless of the position of the aircraft and overload.

State test aircraft T-6 only ended tests in 1976. On 04 February 1975 was published a special decision of the CC CPSU and the USSR Council of Ministers on the adoption of a new attack aircraft in the Air Force and aircraft of the Navy under the name of Su-24 (product of "41", coded NATO - Fencer-A).

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