A photograph of a former Ukrainian Air Force Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker displayed at the National Museum of the US Air Force (NMUSAF) has recently captured the imagination of aviation enthusiasts worldwide.

This picture is not just another image of an aging fighter; it’s a testament to the immense size and power of the Russian-origin Sukhoi Su-27 and Su-30, which stand as giants among their peers in the aviation world.

The photograph, released by the NMUSAF in Dayton, Ohio, offers a unique perspective on the colossal dimensions of the Su-27 series.

The Su-27 in the Hangar

The photograph, which NMUSAF shared on October 25, clearly demonstrates how the Sukhoi Su-27 towers over other decommissioned aircraft, including both Soviet and American legacy models.

cold war fighter jets
(Image source: X) The Su-27, shown here in sky-blue paint, is nearly 72 feet long.

While the Su-27 is often seen solo during airshows, either in flight or parked, it is challenging to fully appreciate its imposing airframe without a reference point.

In this case, the presence of other aircraft in the hangar highlights just how significant the Flanker is in comparison.

The specific Su-27 captured in the photograph is a twin-seater Su-27UB Flanker-C. Remarkably, this fighter was acquired by the United States a decade ago as part of a secretive government program known as Foreign Materials Exploitation (FME).

Flanker jet
(Image source: X)

This program involves obtaining foreign military equipment for study and analysis. The NMUSAF added this aircraft to its Cold War gallery, and the image serves as a testament to the aircraft’s massive size and the collaboration between nations in the complex world of military technology.