"Latvia" Former Soviet Union Military Bases
Vaiņode Former Soviet Union Aerodrome Army Air Force Base Aircraft
Aircraft Armament that could have been found at Vaiņode Former Soviet Union Aerodrome Army Air Force Base 
Lat: N56.41104, Lon: E021.89177 
Vaiņodes muiža 7, Vaiņode, Latvia
Sukhoi Su-27 Armament
  • 1 × 30mm GSh-301 cannon with 150 rounds
  • 8,000kg "17,600 pound" on 10 external pylons
  • Up to 6 × medium-range [AA missiles R-27], 2 × short-range heat-seeking [AA missiles R-73]
                               30mm GSh-30-1 Cannon "Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-301"
The Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-30-1, the actual Russian designation is GSh-301; also known by the "GRAU Index" [See Appendix II] designation "9A-4071K" is a 30mm cannon designed for use on Soviet and later Russian military aircraft,
entering service in the early 1980s. Its current manufacturer is the Russian company Izhmash JSC.
The GSh-301 is a single-barreled, recoil operated cannon weighing 46kg "101 pounds". Unlike many postwar cannons, it is linear action, not a revolver cannon or Gatling gun, with the Russians feeling that the reduction in rate of fire is compensated by reduced mass and bulk.
The GSh-301 has a rate of fire of 1,800 rounds per minute, customarily limited to 1,500 rounds per minute to reduce barrel wear. Despite that, its barrel life is quite short: 2,000 rounds. When firing a continuous burst of 100–150 rounds, the barrel is put under so much stress that it has to be replaced. The gun uses an evaporation cooling system to prevent the detonation of a high explosive round inside a heated barrel. This cooling system consists of a cylindrical water tank around the rear end of the barrel. The GSh-301 is equipped with a unique pyrotechnic mechanism to clear misfires: a small pyrotechnic cartridge is located to the left of the 30mm cartridge chamber. This pyrotechnic cartridge fires a small steel bolt through the side wall of the 30mm cartridge. The hot propellant gases following the bolt into the dud 30mm round ignite the powder charge of that round and firing continues.
The manufacturer "Izhmash Arms Plant, Izhevsk" says the gun's maximum effective range against aerial targets is 1,200 to 1,800m "3,900 to 5,900 feet". 
In combination with a laser range finding/targeting system, it is reported to be extremely accurate as well as powerful, capable of destroying a target with as few as three to five rounds. It has been deployed on several different types of fighter aircraft:  
  • Su-27, Su-30, Su-33 and Su-35: 1 GSh-301 in starboard wing root "150rds. ammunition load"
  • Su-34: 1 GSh-301 in starboard wing root "180rds. ammunition load"
  • MiG-29: 1 GSh-301 in port wing root "150rds. ammunition load"
  • Yak-141: 1 GSh-301 on the belly "150rds. ammunition load"
  • 9A4273 gun pod: 1 GSh-301 flexibly mounted, pod weight 480kg "150rds. ammunition load"
GSh-30-1 Specifications
Up to 6 × Medium-Range [AA Missiles R-27], 2 × Short-Range Heat-Seeking [AA Missiles R-73] 
AA Missiles R-27 Medium-Range 
                                                                    Vympel R-27R "R-27 T" 
                                            MiG 29 Firing a AA-10
The Vympel R-27 missile with the [NATO] reporting name AA-10 "Alamo" is a medium-to-long-range air-to-air missile developed by the Soviet Union. It remains in service with the Russian Air Force and air forces of the former Commonwealth of Independent States.
The R-27 is manufactured in infrared-homing "R-27T", semi-active-radar-homing "R-27R", and active-radar-homing "R-27AE" versions, in both Russia and the Ukraine. The R-27 missile is carried by the Mikoyan MiG-29 and Sukhoi Su-27 fighters, and some of the later-model MiG-23MLD fighters have also been adapted to carry it. The R-27 missile is also license-produced in the PRC, though the production license was bought from Ukraine instead of Russia. The Chinese versions have a different active radar seeker taken from the Vympel R-77 missile, which was sold to the PRC by Russia.
  • R-27R AA-10 "Alamo-A", semi-active radar homing. Launch range from Mach 1.4, 11km altitude: 60km "head-on" / 21km "tail-on". Minimum launch range under same conditions 2km "head-on" / 0.5 to 0.6km "tail-on". Up to 80km under 
  •  optimal conditions 
  • R-27T AA-10 "Alamo-B", infrared homing, passive homing using the Avtomatika 9B-1032 "PRGS-27" IR seeker head. Weight 248kg. Range is said to be 70km under optimal conditions. The R-27T missile does not possess a data link, 
  • which makes it useful only at much shorter ranges at head-on engagements, however. At tail-on engagements the longer physical reach can be fully utilized.
  • R-27ER AA-10 "Alamo-C", the semi-active-radar homing extended-range version, which is 70 cm longer and slightly wider. Range up to 130km under optimal conditions. Entered service 1990.
  • R-27ET AA-10 "Alamo-D", the infrared-homing extended-range version, which is 70 cm longer and slightly wider, range of 120km under optimal conditions using the Avtomatika 9B-1032 "PRGS-27" seeker head. Weight 348kg. Entered service in 1990. The R-27ET missile does not possess a data link, which makes it useful only at much shorter ranges at head-on engagements, however. At tail-on engagements the longer physical reach can be fully utilized.
  • R-27P AA-10 "Alamo-E", passive radar homing with a range of up to 72km.
  • R-27EP AA-10 "Alamo-F", a longer range passive anti-radiation missile with a range of up to 70nm "130km" 
Vympel R-27R Specifications
AA Missiles R-73 Short-Range Heat-Seeking Missile
                                                      R-73 HuAF
Other R-73 Missiles 
                                              R-73 in front of an R-77                                                                          73Ae, R-27R1(AeR1), R-27T1(AeT1) and Kh-59MAe
The Vympel R-73 [NATO] reporting name AA-11 "Archer" is a short-range air-to-air missile developed by Vympel NPO, that entered service in 1982.
The R-73 was developed to replace the earlier R-60 AA-8 "Aphid" weapon for short-range use by Soviet fighter aircraft. Work began in 1973, and the first missiles entered service in 1982.
The R-73 is an infrared-guided "heat-seeking" missile with a sensitive, cryogenic cooled seeker with a substantial "off-boresight" capability: the seeker can "see" targets up to 60° off the missile's centerline. It can be targeted by a helmet-mounted sight "HMS" allowing pilots to designate targets by looking at them. Minimum engagement range is about 300 meters, with maximum aerodynamic range of nearly 30km "19 miles" at altitude.
The R-73 is a highly maneuverable missile and mock dogfights have indicated that the high degree of "off-boresight" capability of the R-73 would make a significant difference in combat. The missile also has a mechanically simple but effective system for thrust-vectoring. Altogether this prompted the development of the Sidewinder and other SRM successors like AIM-132 ASRAAM, IRIS-T, MICA IR, Python IV and the latest Sidewinder variant, AIM-9X, that entered squadron service in 2003.
From 1994 the R-73 has been upgraded in production to the R-73M standard, which entered CIS service in 1997. The R-73M has greater range and a wider seeker angle "to 60° off-boresight", as well as improved IRCCM "Infra-Red Counter-Counter-Measures".
An improved version of the R-73M, the R-74M features fully digital and re-programmable systems, and is intended for use on the MiG-35 or MiG-29K/M/M2 and Su-27SM, Su-30MK and Su-35BM.
The weapon is used by the MiG-29, MiG-31, Su-27, Su-34 and Su-35, and can be carried by newer versions of the MiG-21, MiG-23, Sukhoi Su-24, and Su-25 aircraft. India is looking to use the missile on their HAL Tejas. It can also be carried by Russian attack helicopters, including the Mil Mi-24, Mil Mi-28, and Kamov Ka-50.
Operational History
On 24 February 1996, two Cessna 337 of the Brothers to the Rescue were shot down by a Cuban Air Force MiG-29UB. Each of the aircraft was downed by a R-73 missile. 
During Eritrean-Ethiopian War from May 1998 to June 2000, R-73 missiles were used in combat by both Ethiopian Su-27s and Eritrean MiG-29s. It was the IR-homing R-60 and the R-73 that were used in all but two of the kills. 
                                                          AA-11 Archer Missile
Vympel R-73 Specifications
Revised: 01/30/2013 – 00:33:12