|Yak-130 at the Farnborough Air Show 2012|
|Role||Advanced trainer / Light fighter|
|First flight||26 April 1996|
|Introduction||19 February 2010|
|Primary user||Russian Air Force|
Algerian Air Force
The Yakovlev Yak-130 (NATO reporting name: Mitten) is a subsonic, two-seat advanced jet trainer/light attack aircraft or lead-in fighter trainer, developed by Yakovlev and Aermacchi. Development of the plane began in 1991, and the maiden flight was conducted on 26 April 1996. In 2005, it won a Russian government tender for training aircraft, and in 2009 the first planes entered service with the Russian Air Force. As an advanced training aircraft, the Yak-130 is able to replicate the characteristics of several 4+ generation fighters as well as the fifth-generation Sukhoi T-50. It can also perform light-attack and reconnaissance duties, carrying a combat load of 3,000 kg.
In the early 1990s, the Soviet government asked the industry to develop a new aircraft to replace the Czech-made Aero L-29 Delfín and Aero L-39 Albatros jet trainers. Five design bureaus put forward proposals. Among them were the Sukhoi S-54, Myasischev M-200, Mikoyan MiG-AT, and Yakovlev Yak-UTS. In 1991, the other proposals were dropped and only the MiG-AT and Yak-UTS remained.
Development of Yak-UTS started in 1991 and the design was completed in September 1993. The same year, Yakovlev entered an agreement with the Italian company Aermacchi to work together on the plane, which now became Yak/AEM-130. The Yak-130 version was to be offered for the Russian and the M-346 version for the Italian market. On 10 April 2002, it was announced that Yak-130 had been chosen as the winner of the tender for trainer aircraft for basic and advanced pilot training, beating the MiG-AT.
Plans to develop a Light Attack Aircraft based on the Yak-130, came to a halt in the late 2011. Dubbed Yak-131, the aircraft failed to meet "enhanced pilot protection" requirements, put forward by the Russian Air Force. Focus has shifted to a Sukhoi Su-25 replacement, instead. The Light Attack Aircraft was slated to enter service by the year 2020.
Yak-130 completed its maiden flight, registered as RA-431130, on 25 April 1996 at Zhukovsky. The plane was put on display for the first time at the Paris Air Show in June 2005. The same year, the Russian Air Force made its first order for 12 Yak-130s. On 30 April 2004, the first pre-series Yak-130, assembled at the Sokol plant in Nizhny Novgorod, performed its maiden flight. It was followed by three more pre-series aircraft. In December 2009, the aircraft completed state trials and was accepted for service. The Russian Air Force intends to buy at least 72 Yak-130s, enough to equip four training regiments. Commander-in-Chief, Colonel General Aleksander Zelin, announced on November 8, 2011, that the Russian Defence Ministry was to sign a contract within two weeks with Irkut Corporation for 65 additional aircraft - 55 firm orders plus 10 options. Zelin stated that deliveries were expected to be completed by 2017.
Yak-130 is an advanced pilot training aircraft, able to replicate characteristics of Russian 4th and 5th generation fighters. This is possible through the use of open-architecture digital avionics compliant with a 1553 Databus, a full digital glass cockpit, quadruplex-channel digital Fly-By-Wire System (FBWS) and Instructor controlled and variable FBWS handling characteristics and embedded simulation. The type also has a Head-Up-Display (HUD) and a Helmet-Mounted-Sighting-System (HMSS), with a double GPS/GLONASS receiver updating an Inertial Reference System (IRS) for highly accurate navigation and precision targeting. The developer estimates that the plane can cover up to 80% of the entire pilot flight training program.
In addition to its training role, the aircraft is capable of fulfilling Light Attack and Reconnaissance duties. It can carry a combat load of 3,000 kilograms (6,600 pounds), consisting of various guided and un-guided weapons, auxiliary fuel tanks and electronic pods. According to its chief designer Konstantin Popovich, during a testing phase that ended in December 2009, the plane was tested with "all airborne weapons with a weight of up to 500 kg that are in service in the Russian Air Force". Yak-130 has nine hard points: two wingtip, six under-wing and one under-fuselage.
The aircraft's twin engines are mounted under extended wing roots, which reach as far forward as the windscreen. Two Ivchenko Progress AI-222-25 Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) produce a combined total of 49 kilonewtons (11,000 pound-force) of thrust. An upgraded, "-28" engine is also on offer, increasing the thrust to 53 kN (12,000 lbf). At a normal Take-Off Weight of 7,250 kg (15,980 lb), a Thrust-to-Weight ratio of 0.70 is achieved with the "-25", or 0.77 with the "-28" engines. This compares with 0.65 for the BAE Systems Hawk 128 and 0.49 for the Aero Vodochody L-159B.
Maximum internal fuel capacity is 1,700 kg (3,700 lb). With two external combat fuel tanks the figure increases to 2,600 kg (5,700 lb). Maximum true airspeed is Mach 0.93 (572 knots), service ceiling is 12,500 metres (41,000 feet) and load factors are from -3 to +9 g. Typical Take-Off speed and distance in a "clean" configuration are 209 km/h (113 kn) and 550 m (1,800 ft), whilst landing figures are 191 km/h (103 kn) and 750 m (2,460 ft), respectively. Cross wind limit is 56 km/h (30 kn).
The Yakovlev Yak-130 is equipped with the FBWS controlled engine intake blanking doors, in order to prevent the aircraft's engines from sustaining Foreign object damage when operating from unpaved runways and grass strips.
The large canopies are sideways hinged.
Combat training suite on the Yak-130 includes simulated and real firing systems with air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles, bomb dropping, gun firing and on-board self-protection systems.
The first Yak-130s entered Russian Air Force service in July 2009. However, deliveries have been slow. On 29 May 2010, one aircraft crashed near Lipetsk during testing (both pilots ejected). As of January 2012, it is believed that only eight aircraft are operational in their advanced jet trainer role.
The first export orders were signed in 2006, when Algeria ordered 16 Yak-130s and Libya put an order for 6 planes. 3 Yaks were in delivered on 28 November 2011, with the remaining aircraft soon following.
Deliveries to Libya were expected in 2011–2012, but the Libyan National Transitional Council cancelled Libya's order for Yak-130s in September 2011 as part of a review of all existing arms contracts.
The Uruguayan air force is considering the aircraft for the future replacement of the A-37, while Russia has offered the Yak-130 to Serbia as part of a US$3 billion loan for the upgrading of the Serbian armed forces. In October 2012 Russia took delivery of six fighters. The first batch of Yak-130 combat trainers fly from the Irkut plant to the Borisoglebsk airfield [Voronezh region] after an extensive flight testing program,” Col. Andrei Bobrun said.
- Yakovlev Yak-130 – basic dual seat advanced trainer
- Yakovlev Yak-131, Yak-133 and Yak-135 – for single seat light attack aircraft/recon/4 seat VIP transport 
- Algerian Air Force 16 in service.
- Bangladesh Air Force has ordered 24 aircraft.
- Belarusian Air Force has ordered 4.
- Mongolian Air Force has ordered 1.
- Russian Air Force has 32 in service + (one lost). First production aircraft was received in late July of 2009. Russia has a total requirement of 72 to 200 aircraft. The RuAF placed a firm order for 55 aircraft.
- Syrian Air Force had ordered 36 aircraft in 2012.
- Vietnam People's Air Force may have ordered 8.
In April 2012, Irkut Corporation president, Alexey Fedorov claimed that there are "more than ten potential customers". In November 2012, Sergey Kornev, a representative of the Rosoboronexport (Russia’s state intermediary agency for exports/imports of defense-related products) said Malaysia and several other countries are also interested of Yak-130. He was speaking at the China Airshow 2012 in the Chinese city of Zhuhai.
Data from www.yak.ru
- Crew: 2 pilots
- Length: 11.49 m (37 ft 8 in)
- Wingspan: 9.72 m (31 ft 10 in)
- Height: 4.76 m (15 ft 7 in)
- Wing area: 23.52 m² (253.2 sq ft)
- Empty weight: 4,600 kg (10,141 lb)
- Loaded weight: 6,350 kg (14,000 lb)
- Max. takeoff weight: 10,290 kg (22,685 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Progress AI-222-25 turbofan, 2,500 kg (5,512 lbf) each
- Maximum speed: 1,050 km/h (644 mph)
- Cruise speed: 887 km/h (551 mph)
- Stall speed: 165 km/h (103 mph)
- Range: 2,546 km (1,582 miles)
- Service ceiling: 12,500 m (42,660 ft)
- Rate of climb: 50 m/s (10,000 ft/min)
- Wing loading: 276.4 kg/m² (56.60 lb/sq ft)
- Thrust/weight: 0.78
A symmetric or asymmetric weapon load, weighing up to 3,000 kg (6,600 lb) and consisting of various guided and un-guided weapons, auxiliary fuel tanks and electronics pods can be carried on 9 hardpoints: 1 on each wingtip, 3 under each wing, and 1 under the fuselage.
- Alenia Aermacchi M-346 Master
- EADS Mako/HEAT
- Hongdu L-15
- Hongdu JL-8
- KAI T-50 Golden Eagle
- HESA Shafaq
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- Russia investigates cause of Yak-130 crash
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The initial version of this article was based on material from aviation.ru. It has been released under the GFDL by the copyright holder.
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