Bulgaria   Bulgarian Air Force (BuAF)
Republic of Bulgaria (Republika Balgariya)

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Bulgarian Armed Forces: Ground Forces, Naval Forces, Bulgarian Air Forces (Bulgarski Voennovazdyshni Sily, BVVS) Active 34,975 (Army 16,268 Navy 3,471 Air 6,706 Central Staff 8,530) Paramilitary 34,000. Reserve 302,500 (Army 250,500 Navy 7,500 Air 45,000)

Bulgarski Voennovazdushni Sili (BVVS) (Военновъздушни сили (ВВС)
Air Force 6,706 personnel. Flying hours 30 to 40 hrs/yr

Forces by Role & Equipment by Type
(incl Air Defence units)

AIRCRAFT 68+ combat capable. Total 101+ Aircraft.

Air Superiority (Interceptor & Reconnaissance) 2 sqns with 39 Ftr/Recce ac:
17 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29S Fulcrum-A;
4 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29UB Fulcrum-B;
15 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21bis Fishbed-N;
3 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21UM Mongol-B

Reconnaissance & Training 1 sqn with 12 Recce/Trg ac:
10 Sukhoi Su-22M-4 Fitter-K;
2 Sukhoi Su-22UM-3K Fitter-G

Fighter Ground Attack Attack &Training 2 sqns with 17 FGA/Trg ac:
14 Sukhoi Su-25K Frogfoot-A
3 Sukhoi Su-25UBK Frogfoot-B

Transport sqns with 19 Tpt ac:
3 Alenia C-27J Spartan;
1 Tupolev TU-134B Crusty;
1 Antonov An-30 Clank (surveillance & Recce);
3 Antonov An-26 Curl;
1 Antonov An-24 Coke;
7 Let L-410UVP/L-410UVP-E;
1 Pilatus PC-12M (VIP light transport);
2 Antonov An-2T Colt;

Training 1sqn with 14 Trg ac :
Advanced light attack & trainer
8 Aero Vodochody L-39ZA Albatros;
Basic Training Aircraft
6 Pilatus PC-9M

Most in storage.
? Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-23 Flogger;
? Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21bis Fishbed-N;
6 Sukhoi Su-25K/UBK Frogfoot-A/B;
? Aero Vodochody L-29 Delfin/Maya;
5 Aero Vodochody L-39ZA Albatros;

HELICOPTER 22 Attack capable. Total 57 Helicopters.

Anti-Armour Attack & Assault 2 sqns with 22 Atk hel:
(12 being upgraded to NATO standard);
5 Mil Mi-24V Hind-E;
17 Mil Mi-24D Hind-D

Support sqns with 23 Spt (Tpt) hel:
11 AS 532AL Cougar (incl 4 for CSAR; option on 7 more);
14 Mil Mi-17 Hip-H (6 to be upgraded to NATO standard);
4 Mil Mi-17PP Hip-K;

VIP Transport sqn with 3 VIP hel:
1 Mil Mi-8PS Hip-K;
1 Mil Mi-8TM Hip-E;
1 Agusta Westland AW109

Utility & Training 1 sqn with 6 Utl /Trg hel:
6 Bell 206B-3 JetRanger III

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

UAV Reconnaissance 1 sqn with ? Recce UAV:
Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk Block 40 Reconnaissance UAV (5 ordered to be fully operational before 2015 as a part of the NATO AGS)
? Yastreb-2S
? Armstechno NITI

ASM 412+: 250 Kh-23/AS-7 Kerry ASM (1976-1984 delivered. For MiG-23BN); 162 Kh-29ML/AS-14 Kedge ASM (1985-1989 delivered, For Su-25); AS-10 Karen

AAM 3219+: BVRAAM 285:100 R-27/AA-10 Alamo (1990-1991 delivered. For MiG-29); 60 R-23R/T/AA-7 Apex (1978 delivered. For MiG-23MF); 125 R-24R/T/AA-7 Apex BVRAAM (1983-1985 delivered. For MiG-23ML); SRAAM 2934:: 264 R-73/AA-11 Archer S (1990-91 delivered. For MiG-29); 250 R-60/AA-8 Aphid (1983-1987 delivered. For MiG-23); 1200 R-13S/AA-2S Atoll (1979-1986 delivered. For MiG-21, MiG-23, Su-22 and Su-25); 600 R-13S/AA-2 Atoll (1965-1975 delivered. For MiG-21) 75 R-13S/AA-2 Atoll (1963 delivered. For MiG-21F); 510 R-13S/AA-2 Atoll (1960-1962 delivered. For MiG-19S)

Bulgarian Air Force Air Defence Systems
SA-10 Grumble (quad) SP/SA-2 Guideline towed/ SA-3 Goa/SA-5 Gammon static (20 sites, 110 launchers)

2 S-300P/SA-10A Grumble SAM systems (75 5V55K/SA-10A Grumble SAM - 1989 delivered)
30 S-75 Dvina/SA-2 Guideline SAM systems (750 SA-2 Guideline SAM - 1960-1965 delivered)
34 S-125M/SA-3B Goa SAM systems (1200 5V27/SA-3B Goa SAM - 1975-1981delivered)

RADAR Air search radar
1 ST-68/Tin Shield (1989 delivered. For use with S-300P (SA-10) SAM systems; may be 40V6M1 version)

Bulgarian Air Force Main Headquarters: Sofia HQ
Bulgarian AF Airfields and Airbases Organisation (Current Order of Battle):

Facilities of the Bulgarian Air Force: Bulgarski Voennovazdushni Sili

Dobroslavtsi Air Base - 1st Fighter Air Base
1 AD Cmd,1 Tactical Aviation Cmd

Korpus Protivovazdushna Otbarana/Air Defence Corps (HQ Sofia)
Korpus Protivovazdushna Otbarana HQ Flt (Sofia-Vrazhdebna): An-2 Colt

Graf Ignatievo Air Base - 3rd Fighter/Recce Air Base
3rd Fighter Air Base (Graf Ignatievo) 3 IAB wing (3 Iztrebitelna AB)
1/3 IAE Squadron (1/3 Eskadrila): MiG-21bis, MiG-21UM
2/3 IAE Squadron (2/3 Eskadrila): MiG-29A, MiG-29UB, L-39ZA

Missile aid defense troops (Missile Air Defence:/ Sofia Headquarters)
1 SAM Brigade - HQ Sofia
Missile Air Defence Battalion (S300P)
Missile Air Defence Battalion (S125 Neva)
2 SAM Brigade - HQ Plovdiv
Missile Air Defence Battalion (S125 Neva)
3 SAM Brigade - HQ Bourgas
Missile Air Defence Battalion (S125 Neva)
Mobile Missile Air Defence Battalion (2K12 Kub), Stara Zagora
Missile Air Defence Shooting Range, Shabla

Gabrovnitsa Air Base - 2nd Fighter Air Base
Uzundzhovo Air Base - 4th Fighter Air Base (later 21st Fighter-Bomber Air Base)
Ravnets Air Base - 5th Fighter Air Base
Balchik Air Base - 6th Fighter Air Base

Glavenshtabna Bulgarski Voennovazdushni Sili HQ/Air Force HQ (Sofia)
Vrazhdebna Air Base - 16th Transport Air Base (military area of Sofia Airport)
16th Transport Air Base (Transportna Aviobasa) - 16 TAB wing( Sofia IAP-Vrazhdebna)
1/16 Eskadrila TAE Squadron: CJ-27; An-26 Curl; An-30 Clank; L-410UVP; TU-134B Crusty; PC-12M, Mi-8PS,
Korpus Protivovazdushna Otbarana HQ Flt (Sofia-Vrazhdebna): An-2 Colt;

Korpus Takticheska Aviatzia/Tactical Air Command (HQ Plovdiv)
Korpus Takticheska Aviatzia HQ Flt (Krumovo): An-2 Colt
Krumovo Air Base - 24th Helicopter Air Base (military area of Plovdiv Airport)
Hel 24th Helicopter Air Base (Krumovo) 24 VAB wing (24 Vertoletna Aviobasa)
1/24 VAE Squadron (1/24 Eskadrila): Mi-24D/V Hind D;
2/24 VAE Squadron (2/24 Eskadrila): AS 532AL Cougar; Mi-17 Hip;
OUAZ (Independent Training Flight) Squadron (Otdelna Uchebno Aviozveno): Bell 206B JetRanger III

Uzundzhovo Air Base - 21st Fighter-Bomber Air Base (formerly 4th FAB)

Bezmer/Jambol Air Base - 22nd Ground Attack AB (becoming a joint Bulgarian-American training facility)
FGA 22nd Attack Air Base (Bezmer) 24 ShtAB wing (22 Shturmova Aviobasa)
1/22 ShtAE Squadron (1/22 Eskadrila): Su-25K/UBK Frogfoot (5 upgraded to NATO compatibility)
2/22 ShtAE Squadron (2/22 Eskadrila): Su-25K/UBK Frogfoot (5 upgraded to NATO compatibility)

Stara Zagora Air Base - 23rd Attack Helicopters Air Base
Cheshnegirovo Air Base/ Sadovo - 25th Fighter-Bomber Air Base
Dobrich Air Base - 26th Reconnaissance Air Base

28th Air Detachment (VIP Transport)
Airbus A319 CFM, Tupolev Tu-154M, Dassault Falcon 2000, Piaggio P.180 Avanti II, Pilatus PC-12M, Mil Mi-8PS, Mil Mi-8TM, AW109

Air Force Training School
Shtraklevo Air Base - 12th Training Air Base (Kamenets (now transferred to Dolna Mitropoliya)
HQ Dolna Mitropolija - Air Force School (Visshe Voennovarzdusho Utchilishte)
Air Training Base (Dolna Milropolia) 12 UAB wing( 12 Utchebna Aviobasa Kamenetz)
1/12 UAE Squadron (1/12 Eskadrila): L-39ZA Albatros (advanced trg ac); PC-9M (basic trg ac)

Bozhurishte Airfield

The city of Plovdiv used to house the headquarters of the Tactical Aviation Command and is still a place of significance as it houses a number of logistical and operational support units of the Bulgarian Air Force.

The city of Bourgas is the place around which the 3rd Missile Air Defence Brigade of the Bulgarian Air Force is deployed.

63rd Independent Maritime Helicopter Air Base at Varna Chaika, which houses the Independent Maritime Helicopter Squadron.

Note: Bulgaria has 130 airports with paved runways (over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 17 1,524 to 2,437 m: 15 under 914 m: 96), 80 airports with unpaved runways (1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 6 under 914 m: 73), and 3 heliports.

Official website:

Bulgaria AF

   Bulgaria AF News:

Bulgaria's government approves plan to buy up to 19 fighter jets

• Bulgaria's government approves plan to buy up to 19 fighter jets  (4.4.2016)

Bulgarian Defense Minister Delays Jet Fighter Purchase

• Bulgarian Defense Minister Delays Jet Fighter Purchase  (11.6.2013)

U.S., Bulgarian Airmen Strengthen Ties During Exercise

• U.S., Bulgarian Airmen Strengthen Ties During Exercise  (30.5.2012)

• Bulgarian Mig-29 Crashes Without Casualties  (26.4.2012)

• USAF F-16s, MiGs Engage In Combat Training Over Bulgaria  (25.4.2012)

• Support deal for Bulgarian Air Forces C-27Js  (23.12.2011)

• Alenia delivers 3rd C-27J to the Bulgarian AF


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