Hawker Hunter Aviation Ltd (HHA) owned Sukhoi SU 22M-4 Fitter.
Initially delivered on the 26-11-1986 as “629” of the NVA (East German Air Force), it served with 2/ MFG 28 (2nd Squadron, Naval wing 28) at Laage until it was prematurely retired on the 2-10-90 as a result of the collapse of the East German regime.
The German MoD had decided not to keep the SU22 on its inventory, and as a result the East German Squadrons were disbanded and the aircraft was placed in airworthy store under the new squadron code “25+29”. However, the aircraft was still very much a potent strike aircraft in use all over the world, so the German Test and Evaluation Centre (WTD –61) at Manching acquired seven of the type for technological evaluation purposes. This SU was one of these and became “98+14” with its new owners on 23-9-1991. The aircraft were test flown and maintained by former NVA personnel, with major servicing being undertaken by the Polish aircraft facility WZL-2 at Bydgoszcz. West German pilots and ground crews were rapidly brought up to speed on the type and the evaluation of its systems lasted until September 1998.
After extensive negotiations HHA acquired the aircraft on the 14 January 1999 when it was flown to our maintenance facility at RAF Scampton. When delivered, the aircraft had accrued only 767 flight hours in 743 flights and became the youngest & lowest houred aircraft in our fleet.
The SU22M4 is currently in storage in HHA’s RAF Scampton, undergoing regular anti-det maintenance and custodial ground runs. The aircraft, its systems and spares are maintained in such a condition that it can readily be reactivated to flight status, should a contractual tasking arise which requires the performance and flight envelope of the SU22 platform.
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