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Yak Corporation

Moscow machine-building plant 
"Skorost (Speed)" named after A.S.Yakovlev
Yak Corporation 
Yakovlev Design Bureau
Yak Aircraft Corporation

The Development Design Bureau founded by A.S.Yakovlev is a research enterprise: for its lifetime it had produced more than 200 types and modifications of flying vehicles and over 100 of them were in serial production. Beginning from 1932 Design Bureau aircraft are in permanent serial production and operation. For 70 years of activity there were produced 70 000 aircraft by "Yak". This is the most number in Russian aircraft industry.

During the Great Patriotic War, Yakovlev produced more Soviet fighters than any other company. One of the Soviet Union's most successful aircraft designers, Yakovlev was best known for his piston-engined fighters, sports planes, and the first Soviet all-weather jet fighter. Yak Aircraft Corporation has also built the world's only supersonic VTOL fighter, the Yak-141. Other current aircraft include the Yak-130 Advanced Trainer, the Yak-42 and Yak-40 transports, the Yak-54 aerobatic aircraft, and the "Bumblebee" unmanned aircraft.

During the Great Patriotic War nearly 40,000 "Yak" aircraft were delivered to the front. The production of Yakovlev fighters during the war came to a total of 36,732, including 8,721 Yak-ls, 6,399 Yak-7s, 16,769 Yak-9s, and 4,484 Yak-3. The later Yakovlev planes were excellent fighters, able to fly fast, maneuver at all altitudes, handle well, and were, in short, worthy opponents for the Bf-109s and FW-190s in dog fights.

The Yak-1 is considered the best Soviet fighter initial period of war. Yak-7 for the first time allowed Soviet pilots to fight the German aces equal. "Honored veteran" Yak-9 was the most popular aircraft of WWII. The legendary Yak-3 deservedly nicknamed the "miracle machine", "dream Pilot" - such a light and maneuverable fighter was not at one belligerent country on its flight to the "Yak" superior and German Me-109, and American "Cobra" and British "Spitfire".

The main areas of the bureau’s work were:

  • Light aircraft of different types;
  • WW2 fighters;
  • The first Soviet reactive fighters;
  • Airborne helicopters;
  • Supersonic interceptors;
  • Vertical take-off and landing supersonic aircraft;
  • Reactive civil aircraft;
  • Drones.

After the war, Yakovlev continued to maintain its leadership position in the OTE-quality military aircraft. Under his leadership, the were created the first Soviet jet fighter Yak-15, loitering interceptor Yak-25 and Yak-28, a multipurpose supersonic VTOL aircraft Yak-141, etc.

Since 1934, planes designed by OKB Yakovlev have remained in serial production. In total, more than 70 thousand Yak planes were built, with more than 40 thousand built during WW2. It is a well-known fact that two thirds of all fighters in World War II were Yaks. These planes and their designers received the Lenin prize, State and Stalin prizes. The planes were widely used in the Soviet Union and abroad. Among the best known are the Yak-9, Yak–38 and Yak–141.

The Yak-9 was one of the best known aircraft built by Yakovlev. A single-engine fighter, it was used by the USSR during WW2. It was the most produced Soviet fighter during the war and remained in production from 1942 to 1948, with 16,769 items built.

A variety of trends were typical for the Design Bureau, namely: light airplanes (since 1927), combat airplanes (since 1939), helicopters (1945-60) and dropping airplanes (1948-49). The first specialized passenger airplane of the DB was a six-seat airplane with two engines Ya-19 (Ya-19, 1939) that was created on the basis of the UT-3, bomber. The series four-seat headquarters airplane Yak-6 (1942) was also the basis for creation of a six-seat passenger Yak-8 (1944). In 1947 the Yak-16 with capacity of 10 passengers was successfully tested. All these airplanes were destined as comparatively short distance airplanes.

As the jet age dawned, Yakovlev took a conservative approach, with the first Yak jet fighters as jet powered derivatives wartime piston engined designs. In contrast, MiG and Sukhoi pushed the envelope and advance the state of the art. In the rivalry between Sukhoi and Mikoyan, the latter took the upper hand over both Yakovlev and Sukhoi with the MiG-15, MiG-17, and MiG-19 designs.

The Yakovlev Yak-38 was the USSR’s first operational VTOL multi-role combat aircraft with a NATO reporting name Forger. It was based on Kiev class carriers. The plane was a subsonic aircraft. OKB Yakovlev continued working on VTOL aircraft, and later came up with the idea of the Yak-141.

The Yakovlev Yak-141 was the first ever supersonic VTOL carrier-based interceptor. It bore the NATO reporting name Freestyle. Designed for the air defense of Kiev class carriers and cruisers, it operated with two lift-jets mounted vertically behind the cockpit and a vectoring nozzle on the main engine. It performed its maiden flight on March 9, 1987. Some experts considered this interceptor to be 25 years ahead of the timeframe set by foreign manufacturers for the creation of such a plane.

By the 1960s Yakovlev's designs were considered by the Soviet air forces to be unreliable and obsolete, at the worst, limited in performance at best. Yakovlev's submissions to the competition that resulted in the MiG-29 Fulcrum and the Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker (Yak-45 and Yak-47, respectively) were decidedly archaic in appearance and failed to use some of the latest advances in aerodynamics. Most Yakovlev designs following the abandonment of the Yak-28-64 were either light aircraft or airliners, areas that were more heavily influenced by his sons than by Aleksandr Yakovlev himself.

The Yak design is extremely light, simple and easy in service. These design features are also typical for Yak-40 (1966), the first passenger jet of the DB, which was designed for domestic flights as a comfortable and speedy jetplane. The Yak-40 was the first in the world regional jet and the only Soviet aircraft that was certified according to western airworthiness requirement and was bought by Italy, German and other countries and the most economical native regional airliner. The 120-seat Yak-42 (1975) with three turbojet engines had the same design and was destined for short range and domestic flights. Since 1934, when the Yak airplanes were put into series production, they became numerous in production and in operation. All in all 70,000 airplanes have been built with more than 100 types and modifications.

The Yak Aircraft Corporation is now a privatized Russian aviation corporation. The current Yakovlev organization is now much smaller than it was in the Great Patriotic War. However, the company retained a full capability for design, development, experimental production, and serial production of very sophisticated aerospace products. Yakovlev has associated production facilities in Smolensk, Saratov, and Irkutsk.

In December 23, 1992, it was decided to rename the MMZ "Speed" named after AS Yakovlev OKB AS Yakovlev. In August 1993, the Design Bureau was reorganized into an open joint-stock company (OJSC), and then in the Open Joint Stock Company (OJSC) "Experimental Design Bureau named after AS Yakovlev".

In September 2003 it was announced that Corporation Irkut (established on the base of the Irkutsk aviation association) would merge with the Yakovlev design bureau. The talks between Irkut and Yakovlev became one of the most interesting and unexpected events of the Moscow air show. But Joint sto?k company (JSC) "A.S.Yakovlev Design Bureau" remained a public corporation. The shareholders are work collectives members, nonworker pensioners - company's veterans, and some private organizations.

In 2004 JSC "Yakovlev Design Bureau. Yakovlev" became part of the JSC "Corporation" Irkut ". As part of the Corporation on the basis of the former EDB in 2009, was formed by the Engineering center named after AS Yakovlev. Center Director appointed Konstantin Popovich.


Aircraft ProductionNIZHNY NOVGOROD PLANT «SOKOL»link
Aircraft ProductionJSC «YAK ALACON»link
Engine ProductionFSUE MMBPP«SALUT»link
Engine Production«MOTOR SICH»link
FBW, Automatic Flight Control SystemJSC «AVIAPRIBOR HOLDING»link
Armament Control SystemDB «AviAAvtomaticA»
Control Surfaces ActuatorsJSC «VOSKHOD»
Ejection Seat, Life Support SystemsRD&PE «ZVEZDA» JSC
Fuel Metering SystemJSC «TECHPRIBOR»link
Aircraft Electrical EquipmentJSC «AEROELECTROMASH»
Auxiliary Power UnitJSC SPE «AEROSILA»link
Hydraulic Aggregates«RUBIN» AVIATION CORPORATIONlink
Environment Control SystemNPO «NAUKA»link
Flight RecorderJSF «PRIBOR»
Landing GearJSC «HYDROMASH»link

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Page last modified: 03-05-2016 19:46:14 ZULU