TechUkrainian strike damages rare Russian BE-200 in tactical airport hit

Ukrainian strike damages rare Russian BE‑200 in tactical airport hit

Satellite image of the airport in Yeysk
Satellite image of the airport in Yeysk
Images source: © X, @front_ukrainian

9:40 AM EDT, April 11, 2024

On April 4, 2024, Ukrainians initiated an attack on the Yeysk airport, leading to the rapid emergence of reports about several Russian aircraft being damaged. The most recent satellite imagery has verified that among the affected was the seldom-seen BE-200. Let's delve into the specifics of this unique aircraft.

Analyzing satellite images, war analysts assert that the BE-200 suffered damage near its left wing, which might indicate significant harm. Visible parts seem missing, and fuel traces are noticeable on the ground.

Ukrainians damaged the Russian BE-200

The BE-200, a unique addition to Russian aviation, stands out as a flying boat owing to its distinctive design. It serves multiple roles, from transport to combating fires over expansive areas, by hauling up to approximately 13.2 tons of water or other firefighting substances in a single trip. Thanks to the pilot's manoeuvres, it can rapidly refill its tanks using a large body of water, which takes seconds.

Dimensionally, the BE-200 measures 105 feet long and has a wingspan of 107.5 feet. It's equipped with two D-436TP turbofan engines, which propel it to a top speed of 466 mph, and it operates at altitudes up to roughly 36,089 feet.

Remarkably, in the aftermath of the Yeysk airport assault, it was identified that the Su-30s were among the other aircraft compromised. These two-seater, multipurpose fighters, stemming from the design expertise of the Sukhoi Design Bureau, represent a modern segment of Russian aviation, having made their maiden voyage in 1989.

The propulsion of the Su-30s is courtesy of two Saturn Lyulka AL-31F engines, with the aircraft boasting a wingspan of 48.2 feet and a length of 71.9 feet. Capable of achieving speeds up to 1320.8 mph, they come standard with a GSz-30-1 30mm cannon and have the capacity for additional, heavier, underwing weaponry.

Recent updates from the Ukrainian military command highlight that the toll on Russian aviation assets throughout the conflict in Ukraine has surmounted to roughly 350 various aircraft types and about 330 helicopters.

Related content