a reply to: stumason
Ok...let's go through it.
The SU-25 has quite a number of variants, as i'm sure you're aware.
The Ukrainians are documented have to upgraded a number of theirs quite recently (four were upgraded to SU-25M1 and one to SU-25UBM1)
Ukraine has since lost several of these aircraft, as reported by Kiev and the BBC in July.
The Weapons payload of the bog standard SU-25 consists of among others, 'dumb' missiles, which is to say unguided missiles.
The warheads are quite small at 2kg and 3kg, but the missiles aboard an SU-25 can travel very rapidly between MACH 2.5 and MACH 4.5 and have a range
WELL over the altitude difference of the max cruising ceiling of a standard SU-25 fighter, around 22,000 - 25,000ft and the altitude MH17 was
recorded at, 33,000ft.
The missiles are designed to be blast and fragmentation type, meaning they explode and release copious fragmentation projectiles designed to rip
through airframes and cause decompression and ultimately the break up of the aircraft aimed at.
Assuming the SU-25 was at its max altitude, a missile fired at MH17 would strike or detonate near to the jet within 2 - 3 seconds, having traversed
the 8,000 - 10,000 feet separating the two aircraft.
The missile launched from this distance could certainly reach MH17 and disperse fragments of shrapnel nearby which would indeed pepper the commercial
So the all the talk of the SU-25 having a lower altitude ceiling than MH17 was flying at, is irrelevant as the AAM on board could have covered that
distance in virtually no time at all.
I know about the A-10 'tank buster' as i have previously been within 100 meters of several firing like hell at ground targets (if you have been up
close and personal, you too will remember the peculiar sound its cannons make when firing), and is primarily a ground attack aircraft, slow speed,
very heavy armour, while the SU-25 is classed as a close air support jet with a greater range, manoeuvrability and altitude, you have to remember the
thing was going up against a commercial passenger jet...not a Euro fighter or F22...
Besides, Ukraine's air force is in disarray, and has been even before they had just lost several SU-25's (costing $11 million each) that they could
ill afford to lose this month alone. I expect if they were indeed planning to shoot down MH17 and blame the patriots or the Russians, they really
didn't want to risk losing any of their better classed serviceable fighters when a SU-25 would do the job.
As for your and others going on about MH17 pilots not discussing a missile exploding and causing fragmentation damage and decompression...don't you
find it in the least bit curious that they didn't mention anything about a ground based missile either?
According to some on here, MH17 continued to remain aloft for almost 10 minutes after 'something' struck it...would the pilots not speak about being
hit during those 10 minutes then? If we don't have access to the voice data from the black box recordings, how the hell do we know what was and what
wasn't said by the pilots? And as you say, the so-called investigators, you know, the ones who seem awfully reluctant to actually investigate, are
not releasing any data..at least i suspect not until it can be tampered with to erase any data pertaining to the SU-25 and pilots discussing what the
hell that fighter is doing so close by...
IF MH17 remained aloft for 10 minutes after being shot by a missile, AAM or SAM for the sake of argument...that would indicate that it was indeed shot
by a fighter launching a dumb missile with a relatively small warhead....a BUK missile with it's comparatively very large warhead of around 70kg, or
up to 35 times as large as an unguided missile carried among the payload of a SU-25 would have destroyed MH17 almost instantly. It would not be
impossible for a 777 to get away with staying airborne, but a direct hit with a BUK (90% - 95% certainty of hitting its target) it would not remain in
the air for that length of time.
It could potentially manage to stay aloft for that time if it was hit with shrapnel from a smaller AAM though...
Hopefully, we will have answers from the voice data and the telemetry data to show one way or the other what happened, but when the world is pointing
angry fingers at each other and their is HUGE amounts of behind the scenes politicking going on over the entire Ukraine situation...that voice data
better be released sooner rather than later methinks.