The Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force (IRIAF) has unveiled a domestically produced jet trainer ‘Yasin’ that is hoped to address many of its issues with training pilots in basic flying and combat.

It was revealed alongside a production facility, indicating it was the final production variant that would soon enter mass production.

Malaysia-based Asian defense aerospace commentator Garuda Rajawali, who tracked the development history of the Yasin, says the plane is a further refinement of the Kowsar 88 jet, especially “its canopy, air intakes, exhaust pipes, etc.”

The Kowsar is a reverse-engineered F-5F Tiger II two-seat trainer meant to train IRIAF pilots slated to fly the F-14A Tomcat, or the HESA Azarsksh Multirole Combat Aircraft (MRCA) – a highly modified variant of single and two-seat F-5s, with distinctive canted tail fins.

The Yasin is also claimed to possess weapons release capability. “Yasin is capable of carrying out combat missions as well. The Iranian jet is also designed to perform other military operations, such as close air support (CAS),” said one report.

However, experts indicated this variant is not weapon ready, and such a version would need more development. “If there are still plans for a CAS variant, we’ll likely see the design for it soon,” the handle’s tweet said.

This version unveiled is the final production variant and is more advanced with greater indigenous systems, electronics, avionics, ejection seats, engines, airborne weather radars, and landing gears. The prototype of the jet was unveiled in October 2019.

Also, based on pictures released by Mehr and IRNA news agencies, there seem to be two versions of the Iranian copies of the J85 engine. One is known as the ‘Owj,’ an afterburning powerplant for the Kowsar jet, and the other without an afterburner for the Yasin.

Will Yasin Help Train Iranian Pilots On The Su-35?

Military analysts believe Yasin’s upgrades allow it to prepare pilots to fly Iran’s future batch of Sukhoi-35 fighters from Russia.

The jet can help pilots learn basic tactics and techniques of air and air-to-surface combat before they begin possibly flying the F-14 Tomcats, the F-4E Phantom II, the Russian MiG-29s, or the F-5E Tigers.

Except for the Russian MiG, the US-origin fighters are reported to be flown very sparingly by Iran, given the sanctions since 1979 that have cut it off from accessing any spare parts.

This hampers Iran’s airborne air defense and strike options, triggering the development of a diverse and capable range of drones, long-range surface-to-surface missiles, and proxy militias in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen to strike Israel.

Therefore, Iran has a shoddy air safety record, owing to a dwindling amount of spare parts, which forces fewer flight hours to prevent wear and tear, breeding poor flying experience.

An F-7 jet that crashed on May 24 last year near Anarak, 200 km (124 miles) east of Isfahan, which killed two pilots, according to the state-run IRNA news agency, can be concluded to be owing to a combination of the above reasons.

In February of that same year, an F-5 crashed into the wall of a school in the northwestern city of Tabriz, killing two pilots and one person on the ground.

Given its size and general configuration, the Yasin largely falls in the same class as India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT), used in Stage II flight training.

Source » eurasiantimes