The Yakovlev Yak-40 is a regional jet and VIP transport manufactured by Yakovlev. Introduced in September 1968 by Aeroflot, the Yak-40 is the first commuter trijet in the world. It was produced from 1967 to 1981 and was exported since 1970. The aircraft conducted its maiden flight on October 21, 1966.
On October 21, 1966, the first prototype of Yak-40 took to the air for the first time. In 1967, aircraft production began in Saratov Aviation Facility. In 1968, the Yak-40 received its Soviet-type certification. On September 30, 1968, the aircraft performed its first passenger flight with Aeroflot.
The Yak-40 produced several variants with different modifications. In the 1972 variant, the tailspin was eliminated.
The Yak-40-25 is a military conversion designed with the Mikoyan-Gurevich Mig-25R’s nose and installed with an SRS-4A signal intelligence.
The Yak-40 Akva is a military conversion designed with a nose probe and sensors mounted on the pylon. In 1974, a new variant designated Yak-40D was developed that featured an increase in non-stop flight distance.
The Yak-40EC is an export type, the Yak-40 Fobos is a military type equipped with two dorsal viewing domes and a detachable side window. From 1975 to 1981, the Yak-40K was produced. It is a cargo/ convertible/ combination variant of Yak-40 fitted with a sizable freight door.
A few more versions of the Yak-40 were produced. Aircraft production started in 1967 and ended in 1981 with a total of over a thousand units produced. In 1993, the Yak-40s in service with Aeroflot transported 354 million passengers. A total of one hundred and thirty Yak-40s were also exported to different countries around the world.
The Yak-40 has an external length of 20.36 meters, an external height of 3.9 meters, and a fuselage diameter of 2.25 meters. The tail height is 6.5 meters. It has a wheelbase of 7.8 meters, a wingspan of 25 meters, and a wing area of 70 square meters.
The aircraft can accommodate up to 32 passengers on board. It has a 1.85-meter high, 2.15-meter wide, and 7.7-meter long cabin. The Yak-40 is powered by three Ivchenko AI-25 turbofan engines rated at 3,300 horsepower each. It has a maximum cruise speed of 300 knots at 23,000 feet and a travel range of 970 nautical miles. It can fly up to 26,000 feet.