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Sukhoi delivers five Su-34 bombers to Russian Air Force

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The Su-34 fighter bomber. A Sukhoi photo

MOSCOW (BNS): Five Su-34 frontline bombers took off from the runway airport of Sukhoi's Novosibirsk Aircraft Production Association (NAPO) on Tuesday for delivery to the Russian Air Force.

The 4+ generation Su-34s, which are replacing the fleet of Su-24 frontline bombers currently in service with the Air Force, will be deployed at the Western military district air base in Voronezh.

The aircraft delivery is being carried out in the framework of the State defence order 2012, according to Sukhoi.

The Russian Defence Ministry has placed an order for a total of 124 Su-34s to be delivered to the Air Force by 2020.

While the first contract for 32 Su-34s was awarded in 2008, another contract was inked in March 2012 for 92 more such bombers.

"This is one of the largest contracts for combat aircraft supplies under the State armaments programme for 2011-2020," Sukhoi said.

The multi-role Su-34 fighter bombers have been designed to attack land-based, sea- and airborne targets by day and night in all weather conditions.

The four-plus generation strike plane is armed with highly effective long-range air-to-surface and air-to-air guided weapons enabling multi-channel operational employment. It also features a smart anti-radar defence system, an armed cockpit and latest computers that provide extra capabilities for the pilot and navigator to perform aimed bombing and to manoeuver under enemy fire.

The excellent aerodynamics, large capacity internal fuel tanks, fuel-efficient bypass engines with a digital control system, in-flight refueling device and add-on fuel tanks enable the aircraft to fly long distances close to those of medium strategic bombers.

The Russian Air Force had showcased the new bombers during the Vostok-2010 military exercises. During the exercise, the Su-34 successfully hit mock targets in the Russian Far East after flying non-stop all the way from a base in the European part of Russia. The mission also involved a mid-air refueling operation.

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