Sorin MiG-23 Flogger Page

Romanian Air Force MiG-23 Flogger

Name: MiG23 Flogger
Producer: MAPO Mikoyan
Maximum speed: Mach 2.0
Year: 1967
Ohter: MiG23 Flogger is actually the MiG21 with a new airframe to allow the new intakes which do not expose the engine directly on the front side of the airplane. The same thing as for the F4 Phantom which replaced the F100 SuperSabre for the US Air Force.
It has a bad record of a lot of loses and no wins in combat

Models known: MiG-23A, MiG-23R, MiG-23RR, MiG-23S, MiG-23PD Flogger

MiG23 Flogger is unfortunately know as a fighter which usualy servs poor countries, terrorists and countries which are on the so-called "Black List", like Libya, Syria, Iraq, Iran, North Korea, etc.
Among the decades, the MiG23 has been shot down many times by aircraft such as F14 Tomcats, F15 Eagles, F18 Hornets, F16 Fighting Falcons, Mirage F1s and F3s, Harriers, Tornadoes and many others, in various wars, conflicts and border incidents.
Also, the MiG23's radar cannot detect an enemy aircraft unless it is in a pretty small nomber of "ideal position". For example, if the MiG23 directs its nose toward an F-16 and the F-16 is not in the "ideal position" of alignment or counter-alignment against the MiG23, the Flogger's radar will not detect it and therefore the MiG23 could not fire its Apex missile towards it.

MiG-23PD Flogger

The MiG-23PD was developed in parallel with the MiG-23S. The MiG-23PD used a tailed delta configuration with lift engines in the forward fuselage, the MiG-23S had variable geometry wings. The MiG-23S was preferred, and only one MiG-23PD was built.

Type: MiG-23PD
Function: fighter
Crew: 1
Engines: 1 * 7800kg Khachaturov R-27-300
2 * 2350kg Koliesov RD-36-35

Wing Span: 7.72m
Length: 16.80m
Height: 5.15m
Wing Area: 40.00m2
Empty Weight:
Max.Weight: 18500kg
Speed: 2,400 km/h
Ceiling: classified
Range: classified
Armament: 1*g23mm

MiG-23 in the Romanian Air Force

The Romanian Air Force owns and operates no less than 70 MiG23 Floggers.
In the picture on the top of this page you can see a MiG23 Flogger crew preparing for flight early in the morning.

Romanian Air Force MiG-23 Flogger 135

Romanian Air Force
MiG-23 Flogger tail 135, former 157th Fighter Squadron, Mihail Kogalniceanu AFB, former 2 Escadrila, Timisoara AFB, now retired and sometimes used for research, during take-off, Timisoara AFB, 2000

photo: Robin Polderman

However, due to the huge restructuration which is undergoing in the Romanian Armed Forces ever since 1990, the Romanian Air Force being the first to start restructuration and modernization in Eastern Europe and the whole of the former Communist Block, more than 10 years after everybody else, all of those 70 MiG-23 Floggers have been retired from active service since the summer of the year 2000. They made their last awesome flight flown by their brave and skilled pilots during the Timisoara 2000 Air Show International, where representants from over 130 countries participated, together with over 35 diffrent country's fighter and chopper demo squadrons.

After that, the MiG-23s also participated at the air show for the closure of Ianca AFB, in 2001.

Three MiG-23s have also participated at the RoIAS-2001 Constanta Air Show.

Perhaps the MiG-23s will keep on participating in the future to all major Romanian air shows, and perhaps tail 135, the only remaining two-seater that's still flying, will be used for research. But they will never be used again in active service unless a major conflict will start, thing which is, of course, highly unlikely today.

The money used to maintain and operate them are long being redirected towards the upgrading and usage of the new MiG-21 Lancer.
Read more about the MiG-21 Lancer at this page, and about the Timisoara 2000 Air Show at this one.