Believed to be based off of Russian designs from the Nineties and early-2000's, the HESA Shafaq began life as a subsonic stealth aircraft. It soon evolved into a multirole aircraft, fulfilling training and light attack roles in a tandem-seat variant, and a single-seat fighter-bomber variant. The aircraft was designed with Russian and Iranian cooperation, and the main design was undertaken by Malek-Ashtar University of Technology. Russian support is believed to have ended by 2010, but, the Iranians continued on their own. One noteworthy aspect of the design is the large Leading-Edge Root Extension (LERX), that gives the design a noticeable feature. The tail design features twin, outward leaning rudders, with a single jet-engine (RD-33) in between, a staple amongst Iranian engineers, that can trace it roots to the Saeqeh. A 1/7th model was used for wind tunnel tests, and the prototype was scheduled to be constructed by 2008, but this was quickly extended to 2017. Nothing has come of the project since. A full-scale mockup, however, was constructed, and gave details to the design, and to the cockpit, where it was noted that it would be fitted with colour MFDs and a Russian-made K-36 ejection seat.

General features

  • Crew: 1 or 2
  • Length: 10.84 m (35 ft 7 in.)
  • Wingspan: 10.45 m (34 ft 3 in.)
  • Height: 4.26 m (14 ft 0 in.)
  • Empty weight: 361 kg (9,614 lb)
  • Maximum takeoff weight: 900 kg (15,212 lb)
  • Propulsion: 1 × Klimov RD-33 turbofan engine, 50 kN (11,000 lbf) thrust
Performance

  • Service ceiling: 780 m (55,050 feet)
  • Rate of climb: 110 m / s (22,000 feet / min)
Armament

  • Missiles: Sattar, Shahbaz or Fatter missiles

However, it seems the drive to develop a light, multirole strike-trainer has not died off. In 2015, Iranian news agencies began reporting that a new project for a light-trainer and strike-fighter began. It was soon released that a mock-up of the aircraft, now dubbed Borhan, or B-92. The design was shown to be what is essentially a rationalised version of the Shafaq. The mockup was shown with an AGM-65 Maverick and an AIM-9 mounted on a wingtip rail, both weapons of which were purchased by the Shah prior to the 1979 Revolution that have been kept in service ever since. The design now features a more conventional LERX, like the ones found on the Yak-130, and a single tail that is also similar to the Yak-130's. In fact, the aircraft as a whole looks very similar to the Yak-130, and it is believed to be based off of it. It has been stated that the engine fitted to the aircraft will generate 15kN, which will give it a top speed of only M 0.65. Empty weight is believed to be 2,800 kg and a payload of 1,200kg seems to be planned, with a range of 1,800km. It is believed that the Yak-130 can be used as a yardstick regarding roles, performance and weaponry for both the Shafaq and the Borhan. Although it is doubtful as to whether the Iranians are capable of producing such an aircraft, it seems as if their Government is taking it more seriously than previous projects, especially when compared to the Qaher 313.

One design believed to have influenced the Shafaq quite heavily is the Vityaz-2000, as shown below. I always doubted whether the design was truly designed to be stealth, both out of cost and ability, and out of conflicting requirements. Unless they were always intended to be used in a combat environment, I wouldn't find any logical reason to paint a trainer in radar-absorbing material. What other designs influenced these two projects?

Sources:





 

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Hi Natalya91.

I am somewhat late to the party, and also hope that I'm not off-topic.

I have long taken an interest in Iranian military developments, firstly through the now defunct IMF, later the pk/pdf/forums/iranian-defence-forum and of course also our forum. Without all the people posting there and here, I would perhaps not have been able to write on my favorite subject, namely Iran’s future go-to combat aircraft.

To this end I have compiled and posted a picture gallery with some text as well, to:

I hope that you enjoy it.



Thorn
 
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Iran "unveiled" today two models of stealthy types ... one UAV and one combat type !

How realistic they are is open to anyones own gues ... drawings made by "planeman" (via ACIG)

Deino
A similar aircraft crashed near Shahin Shahr, in Isfahan Iran recently. Here's a screenshot from the video View attachment 655718

Looks like someone photoshopped flame effects around a Su-57.
 
Hi Natalya91.

I am somewhat late to the party, and also hope that I'm not off-topic.

I have long taken an interest in Iranian military developments, firstly through the now defunct IMF, later the pk/pdf/forums/iranian-defence-forum and of course also our forum. Without all the people posting there and here, I would perhaps not have been able to write on my favorite subject, namely Iran’s future go-to combat aircraft.

To this end I have compiled and posted a picture gallery with some text as well, to:

I hope that you enjoy it.


(The doc is some 4.5MB in size)

Thorn
Greeting again

I have completed a five part paper in the above regard. It is heavy on images and also has some text.

In total these five parts are just over 36mb.

This paper would not have been possible if was not for the posters to various forums and threads on https://www.secretprojects.co.uk/ and https://defence.pk/pdf/threads/iriaf-news-and-discussions.

I hope that you enjoy it.


Regards

Thorn
 
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I just discovered that IRIAF had modified F-5E's for in-flight refuelling !!!
View attachment 693075
At 0.11m
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KaOQ0EQKfU
Indeed, according to Babak Taghvavee's book "Iranian Tigers at War", a few F-5E/Fs as well as at least one MiG-29UB were fitted with these presumably home-made IFR probes.

However, the program didn't apparently progress anywhere beyond testing for whatever reason.

Just one of many projects from the 1990s that covered everything from these IFR tests, fitting a buddy-refueling pod to a F-4E and attempting to integrate Soviet or Chinese weapons on US-built aircraft.
 

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It is interesting to note that the modernization projects of the IRIAF jets are never led until the end. Contrary to those of the IRGCAF... This shows a little the will of the Iranian rulers.
The F-14AM has not given anything known,
All the projects of modernization of F-5s seems to fall to water. (5 Saeqeh...)
While the Su-22 of the IRGCAF have been all modernized.
It's a shame, because there were many good ideas.
If all the improvements that we could see (PL-7, AAR, Saeqeh style tail & more) had been carried to the whole fleet of Iranian F-5, the latter would be far more formidable.
 
It is interesting to note that the modernization projects of the IRIAF jets are never led until the end. Contrary to those of the IRGCAF... This shows a little the will of the Iranian rulers.
The F-14AM has not given anything known,
All the projects of modernization of F-5s seems to fall to water. (5 Saeqeh...)
While the Su-22 of the IRGCAF have been all modernized.
It's a shame, because there were many good ideas.
If all the improvements that we could see (PL-7, AAR, Saeqeh style tail & more) had been carried to the whole fleet of Iranian F-5, the latter would be far more formidable.
This has been attributed to factors such a poor leadership, lack of funds, and especially interservice rivalry viz IRIAF vs IRGC & IRGCAF.

However, it seems as if Iran's new go-to future fighter has now broken cover - ever so briefly.

It is Kowsar based.

See the interview (in Farsi) and some short camera pans at:-


Will add clearer images and some observations tomorrow

Thorn
 
It is interesting to note that the modernization projects of the IRIAF jets are never led until the end. Contrary to those of the IRGCAF... This shows a little the will of the Iranian rulers.
The F-14AM has not given anything known,
All the projects of modernization of F-5s seems to fall to water. (5 Saeqeh...)
While the Su-22 of the IRGCAF have been all modernized.
It's a shame, because there were many good ideas.
If all the improvements that we could see (PL-7, AAR, Saeqeh style tail & more) had been carried to the whole fleet of Iranian F-5, the latter would be far more formidable.
I am not authorized to access the above resource.

Do you perhaps have an alternative web address.

Thanks

Thorn
 
Hi Thorn,

Can you point to the rough timeframe in the video? Tried to watch the whole thing but my laptop overheats on that site. Are you refering to the Borhan B92 project model shown, (which i undestand it's dead anyway since Yasin is being built) in turn derived from the ill-fated Shafaq?

Thanks.
 
Hi Thorn,

Can you point to the rough timeframe in the video? Tried to watch the whole thing but my laptop overheats on that site. Are you refering to the Borhan B92 project model shown, (which i undestand it's dead anyway since Yasin is being built) in turn derived from the ill-fated Shafaq?

Thanks.
Hi Lancet

Thank you really. I will check it out. Unfortunately I had no timeframe available.

Be careful with the health of your laptop. I say this because to me my computer & internet connection is just about my sole interaction with the outside world.

Must say, the now defunct Borhan B92 does strike an impressive first look.

Just for interest sake.
1693205792433.png

With the advent now of the single-seat Kowsar I will integrate it into my paper at


Since it is mainly a structural shift it will not really affect the other ~152 existing and regularly updated pp by say 5 or so pages.

Will post what I have promised previously later today.

Thorn
 
Hi Lancet

Thank you really. I will check it out. Unfortunately I had no timeframe available.

Be careful with the health of your laptop. I say this because to me my computer & internet connection is just about my sole interaction with the outside world.

Must say, the now defunct Borhan B92 does strike an impressive first look.

Just for interest sake.
View attachment 706853

With the advent now of the single-seat Kowsar I will integrate it into my paper at


Since it is mainly a structural shift it will not really affect the other ~152 existing and regularly updated pp by say 5 or so pages.

Will post what I have promised previously later today.

Thorn

Images unless otherwise indicated are from https://telewebion.com/episode/0x8355c42

1693212092171.png

What is obvious from the centre a/c is that its LERX and the rest of the wings looks to be similar to F-5/Kowsar. What does seem different to me is the slightly 'square-rified' intakes, and at a slight inclination.

Second from right is a section showing what appears to be an engine nozzle. Just to the rear, inside of the fuselage, looks something like this ɷ. Why does this look like provision for the fitting of two smaller engines? Certainly, hope not. There is however an argument to be made in this regard - see Part 1 of my paper at​

https://www.dropbox.com/scl/fo/9wc4kgv5tti4l4qmkpfzd/h?rlkey=8urg8kphpzzezjjgguijgxjyg&dl=0

Apologies all if it seems that I am hocking this paper half to death. I do believe however that it can bring a worthwhile contribution to this thread.

Moving to the a/c to the right, clearly no cranked delta in evidence. In contrast to this:-

1693212175205.png



On the left of this image (top) is a partial wing of a parallel Kowsar 2-seat assembly line.

1693212266813.png

What stands out the most here is the near horizontal dorsal 'extension'? that appears to hold from the rear of the c/pit and joins up at the rear with the exterior 'ducts'. This can safely be interpreted as providing space for a larger single engine.

It would furthermore appear as if a Saeqeh/Kowsar ‘shark’ - shaped front end and radome will be retained.

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HESA_Saeqeh#/media/File:Iranian_Air_Force_HESA_Saegeh.jpg

and

https://gdb.rferl.org/2A12D4DE-C161-4E92-A39D-2D32DF66D6E9_w1597_n_r1_st_s.jpg



Enjoy



Thorn
 
A similar aircraft crashed near Shahin Shahr, in Isfahan Iran recently. Here's a screenshot from the video View attachment 655718
Am I the only person here, thinking that 'video' and clip are bogus?

The scaling and people wandering/standing near a burning model aircraft make it look like a very poor p-h-otoshop attempt. Pretty sure most kids of ten or twelve yo could do better.
 
Interesting, Thorn.

Fuselage lateral sides are different between the two airframes.
Particularly around the intakes and rear fuselage.
Almost as if the middle airframe is single-engined..
 

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Interesting, Thorn.

Fuselage lateral sides are different between the two airframes.
Particularly around the intakes and rear fuselage.
Almost as if the middle airframe is single-engined..
Thank you.

In the absence of more revealing images or even a line drawing, I intend to take note every input and will, after a suitable period of time, apply the aggregate of these to my understanding of this a/c.

Thorn
 
To me any sort of apparent differences are only down to the perpectives of the respective images, or incomplete airframes such as the detached rear fuselage engines fairing (which perhaps makes the rear fuselage look different as if for a singe engine in the picture), and i believe front part of the intakes not being fitted yet.
I can't see so far anything to suggest changes to the intakes or to a single engine configuration (which would be a drastic change that should surely be clearly visible compared to a normal F-5 /Kowsar - perhaps better to have a good look at the F-20 especially the rear fuselage to compare?)
 
To me any sort of apparent differences are only down to the perpectives of the respective images, or incomplete airframes such as the detached rear fuselage engines fairing (which perhaps makes the rear fuselage look different as if for a singe engine in the picture), and i believe front part of the intakes not being fitted yet.
I don't think these aircrafts are intended to be fitted with a single engine. I think they will retain the same configuration, but with two engines of a new type.
 
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It is interesting to note that among the aircrafts, there is also an F-5B. (short & rounded nose compared to F-5F long & pointy nose)
So I don't think it's a production line, but an aircraft overhaul line. This does not rule out the possibility of receiving new types of reactor.
Capture.JPG Capture2.JPG F-5 production line (2).JPG
 
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It is interesting to note that among the aircrafts, there is also an F-5B. (short & rounded nose compared to F-5F long & pointy nose)
So I don't think it's a production line, but an aircraft overhaul line. This does not rule out the possibility of receiving new types of reactor.
View attachment 706864View attachment 706865View attachment 706866
Nice - I see. Line to the left, second airframe.

Maybe they have at long last decided to produce more airframes, starting with the existing F-5s still in reasonable condition.

Thorn
 
There was footage of RD-33 with test done after either maintenance or potentially reverse engineered clone, but I won't take it as anything that it could be a hint or just looking too much into it.

Though since Iran and North Korea have MiG-29's and joint research and development agreement in both civilian and military matters hence could be another joint project that beared fruit.
 
Unfortunately I cannot find my photos of their F-14s with the R-73, however they were equipped with a large number of weapons, including R-27 and the MIM-23 Hawk (some of which were modified for A2G use)

Of note in the first photo is the F-4E with the CJ-802 ASM.

View: https://www.reddit.com/r/aviation/comments/1dcf0i/iriaf_f14_with_russian_r27_air_to_air_missile_f4/

 

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Has this photo already been posted in the thread ?
View attachment 725654
Oh geez....it's a repaint of an OLD fighter model that's been floating around for close to 15 years now (maybe longer), even has the same munitions on it. I believe the model actually predates the first Saeghe so maybe closer to 20 years?

It's far enough back that I'm trying to remember if this was what some Iranian aviation insiders called the "F/B-44" or if that was a different concept and how "real" that name was is anyone's guess.

How real this concept ever was is likely lost to time.

Here are some earlier images of the same concept. Sorry about the quality, these images have to be from about 4 computers back..
 

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No point in making this real after Yak-130 was acquired.
The Shafaq project has been abandoned in 2006.
I don't know whether the Shafaq and its derivative, the Bohran B92, were part of the Ya Hossein project, but in any case the trainer jet currently being developed in Iran is the HESA Yassin.
The advantage of the Yak-130 is that it is in service now and can be used to train future Su-35 pilots, whereas the Yassin will probably enter service in some years.
 
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Oh geez....it's a repaint of an OLD fighter model that's been floating around for close to 15 years now (maybe longer), even has the same munitions on it. I believe the model actually predates the first Saeghe so maybe closer to 20 years?

It's far enough back that I'm trying to remember if this was what some Iranian aviation insiders called the "F/B-44" or if that was a different concept and how "real" that name was is anyone's guess.

How real this concept ever was is likely lost to time.

Here are some earlier images of the same concept. Sorry about the quality, these images have to be from about 4 computers back..
Greetings

I have always wondered how the s.c. F/B-44 would have stacked up to modern (c 2020+) combat a/c. Say, a JAS-39 Gripen C?

In other words, RD-33, 'Amraamski', R-73 or Fatter, and with a modern radar that Russia was prepared to supply to this end.

Fast forward and substitute the above with an RD-93 or SMR-95, SD-10A (PL-12) - at last - R-74 or Azarakhsh-2, Kowsar-standard warfare suite and radar.

Then check how many current fighter a/c went through the same gestation period. During the same time, i.e. 20 yrs of this millinium.

Also, I have updated my paper on the Future Iranian Cambat Aircraft.

Its at:


Enjoy

THorn
 

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