Special Sub-Topic: Also Known As: Soviet Aircraft And Their Aliases
|The MiG-21 was one of the most famous of all Russian aircraft. What name was given to it by NATO forces?
Fishbed. Around 10,000 MiG-21s were produced from 1959 onwards. MiG-21s saw service in Vietnam and in Middle East conflicts. Initially, the MiG-21 was too advanced for its US adversaries in Vietnam. 'Fulcrum' was the MiG-29; 'Farmer' was the MiG-19; and 'Fresco' was the MiG-17. Formerly known as Mikoyan or Mikoyan-i-Gurevich Design Bureau, the company produced its first plane, aptly enough the MiG-1, in 1940.
(NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, was logical in its process of naming Soviet aircraft: fighters were given names starting with 'F'; bombers with 'B'; cargo or transport planes with 'C'; helicopters with 'H' and everything else 'M', for miscellaneous.) Depending on source, the terms 'designation' and 'reporting name' are interchangeable.
|What name did NATO forces give to the Russian fighter the SU-15?
Flagon. It's believed up to 1,500 'Flagons' were manufactured between 1967 and 1993. 'Flanker' was the SU-27; 'Firkin' was the SU-47 and 'Fishpot' was applied to several SU-9 and SU-11 variants. The Sukhoi Design Bureau was founded in 1939. Known for most of its history as a manufacturer of military aircraft, the company launched its 'Superjet 100' passenger aircraft in 2007.
|One of the most famous names in Russian military aircraft was YAK, What was the NATO designation of the YAK-9?|
Frank. More than 16,000 'Franks' were made after 1942. 'Feather' was the YAK-15; 'Flora' was the Yak-23; and 'Flashlight' was the Yak-25. The A.S. Yakovlev Design Bureau JSC was formed in 1934. In 1987, the first flight took place of the Yak-141, the world's first vertical take off and landing aircraft (VTOL) capable of supersonic speeds. Its NATO designation was 'Freestyle'
|The Russian An-71 aircraft was given the NATO reporting name of 'Madcap'. What was its specialty?
Airborne Early Warning. A small number of 'Madcaps' entered service between 1985 and 1991. AN was the abbreviation used by Antonov Aeronautical Scientific/Technical Complex, which was formed in the Ukriane in 1952. The company made large military and civil aircraft, and also gliders.
|What was significant about the AN-22, which was known by the NATO reporting name of 'Cock'?
It was the world's largest turboprop aircraft. The AN-22 was also the largest production aircraft in the world in its day. That record was taken over by the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy. About 66 AN-22s were made from 1967 onwards.
|The first helicopter to enter service with Soviet armed forces was the Mi-1. What was its NATO designation?
Hare. The Mi-1 was introduced in 1950. 'Hound' was the reporting name of the Mi-4. The other two I made up. The 'Hare' was a three or four-seater utility aircraft and first flew in 1948, though it entered service two years later. More than 1,000 were built in Russia and around 1,600 in Poland (as the SM-1).
|A Soviet aircraft that was given the name 'Midas' by NATO forces fulfilled a specialist role. What was it?
Airborne tanker. The Il-78/Il-78M was a tanker conversion of the Ilt5 transport. It entered service in about 1989 and could refuel three other aircraft simultaneously. The Ilyushin Design Bureau was, founded by Sergey Vladimirovich Ilyushin and began operations in January 1933. It built civil as well as military aircraft.
|During the Cuban Missile Crisis of the early 1960s, the Soviet Union increased tensions by supplying a bomber aircraft for local use on the Caribbean island. What was its NATO designation?|
Beagle. The Ilyushin Il-28 was the first jet bomber to enter mass production in the USSR. It was introduced in 1950, and despite showing stylistic throwbacks to the bombers of WW2, it remained in service by the USSR until the 1980s. Some two dozen other countries used it in various sphere of war, including the Middle East, Afghanistan, Vietnam and Nigeria. The USSR shipped around 40 to Cuba at the start of the missile crisis, but they were returned as part of the settlement deal.
|In 1982, Clint Eastwood starred in a movie about a fictional Russian aircraft. What was its nickname?
Firefox. The movie 'Firefox' was based on Craig Thomas's novel of the same name. It was the story of a plot by the west to steal a MiG-31 advanced fighter aircraft. (Russia did produce a real MiG-31 - NATO designation 'Foxhound' - but not until several years later). In 1983, Craig Thomas published a sequel novel 'Firefox Down'. 'Foxbat' was the MiG-25P; 'Flipper' was the Ye-152A; and 'Flanker' was the Su-27.
|NATO gave the name 'Madge' to the Soviet BE-6. What function did it fulfill?
Flying boat. The BE-6 was in service between 1949 and the late 1960s. Its long range made it useful for reconnaissance, mine-laying and transporting supplies. It was even used as a torpedo bomber. The BE-6 was made by the Beriev Aircraft Company, which specialized in amphibious planes and was founded in 1934.
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