The Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force (IRIAF) is the aviation branch of the Iranian armed forces. It has close links to the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Defence Forces, and the Air Force of the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution.

The Air Force performs a number of roles including providing the airborne element of Iran's air defence, maritime reconnaissance and strike, land attack, army support, and transport. It works closely with the Air Defence Forces, AFAGIR, Army, and Navy for all if its missions.

The arms embargo has severely hampered Iran's air force due to the highly technical nature of air forces. Large numbers of Iranian aircraft are not operational due to lack of spare parts, and manufacturer support.

Order of BattleEdit

Aircraft Role Number in service Number acquired Service entry Origin
Grumman F-14A Tomcat Fighter/Interceptor 59 79 1976 United States
Mikoyan MiG-29A/B/UB Fulcrum Air superiority fighter 67 75 1991 Russia (55 Iraq)
Dassault Mirage F-1EQ/BQ Multi-role fighter 13 24 1991 France (Iraq)
McDonnell Douglas F-4D Phantom II Multi-role fighter 18 32 1968 United States
McDonnell Douglas F-4E Phantom II Multi-role fighter 46 180 1971 United States
Sukhoi Su-24MK Fencer-D Interdiction/Strike 33 36 1991 Russia (Iraq)
Northrop F-5E/F Tiger II Multi-role fighter 75 169 1974 United States
McDonnell Douglas RF-4E Phantom II Reconnaissance 8 32 1968 United States
Northrop RF-5A Freedom Fighter Reconnaissance 5 16 1969 United States
Lockheed P-3F Orion Maritime Reconnaissance 3 6 1974 United States
Ilyushin Il-76 AEW (Adnan-1) Airborne Early Warning 2 2 1991 Russia/Iraq/France (Iraq)
Lockheed C-130E/H Hercules Tactical transport 21 60 1965 United States
Antonov An-74TK-200 Coaler Tactical transport 12 12 1999 Russia
Fokker F27 Friendship Tactical transport 14 14 1972 Holland
Xian Y-7 Tactical transport 15 15 2004 China
Boeing 707 Strategic transport/tanker 10 14 1974 United States
Boeing 747 Strategic transport/tanker 8 16 1975 United States
Ilyushin Il-76MD Candid-B Strategic transport 9 11 1991 Russia (3 Iraq)
Ilyushin Il-76TD Candid-B Strategic transport 4 4 1991 Uzbekistan
Harbin Y-12 Utility transport 8 8 2000 China
Rockwell Commander 690 Utility transport 4 6 1973 United States
Pilatus PC-6B Turbo-Porter Utility transport 15 15 1984 Switzerland
Lockheed Jetstar B VIP transport 1 3 1961 United States
Dassault Falcon/Mystere 20F VIP transport 2 3 1976 France
Dassault Falcon/Mystere 50 VIP transport 2 3 1991 France
Beechcraft Bonanza Primary trainer 20 57 1972 United States
Socata TB Primary trainer 15 15 1996 France
MFI-17 Mushshak Primary trainer 40 40 1990 Pakistan
IAMI F33C Parastou1 Primary trainer 26 26 1993 Iran
Pilatus PC-7 Turbo-Trainer Basic/advanced trainer 45 52 1983 Switzerland
Embraer EMB-312 Tucano Basic/advanced trainer 15 15 1989 Brazil
IRGAI S-682 Basic/advanced trainer 10 10 1983 Iran
HESA Simorgh3 Fast jet trainer 20 20 2004 Iran (United States)
OWJ Tazarv4 Fast jet trainer 12 12 2005 Iran
Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star Fast jet trainer 9 30 1956 United States
Kaman HH-43 Huskie Rescue helicopter 10 10 1967 United States

1Iranian-built Beechcraft Bonanza
2Iranian-built Pilatus PC-7 Turbo-Trainer
3Iranian conversion of Northrop F-5A Freedom Fighter
4See link [1]

Future AircraftEdit

These aircraft are in the design, development, or testing phases for introduction into service.

  • HESA Azarakhsh (Multi-role fighter)
  • HESA Saeqeh (Multi-role fighter)
  • HESA Shafaq (Fast jet trainer/attack aircraft)

Aerial WeaponsEdit


  • M61 Vulcan 20mm cannon
  • Pontiac M39 20mm cannon
  • DEFA 553 30mm cannon
  • GSh-30-1 30mm cannon
  • GSh-6-23 23mm cannon

Air to air missilesEdit

  • AIM-9 Sidewinder
  • AIM-7 Sparrow
  • AIM-54 Phoenix
  • Vympel R-73 (AA-11 Archer)
  • Vympel R-27 (AA-10 Alamo)
  • MIM-23 HAWK conversion
  • RIM-66 Standard SM-1 conversion
  • Fattar (Iranian AIM-9 derivative)

Air to surface missilesEdit

  • AGM-45 Shrike
  • AGM-65 Maverick
  • AGM-78 Standard ARM
  • AGM-84 Harpoon
  • Qadr TV-guided missile
    • Rocket powered Mk-84 2000lb bomb with TV guidance package derived from AGM-65 Maverick
  • Zoobin
    • Rocket powered M117 750lb bomb with TV guidance package derived from AGM-65 Maverick
  • Noor anti-ship missile
    • Iranian-made Chinese C-802
  • Sattar-1
    • MIM-23 HAWK based ARM
  • Sattar-3
    • Iranian-made Laser Guided Missile
  • Sattar-4
    • Iranian-made Laser Guided Missile
  • Fajre-Darya anti-ship missile
    • Iranian made Marte with EO guidance

Guided bombsEdit

  • AGM-62 Walleye
  • Iranian made LGB kit for Mk 80 series


  • Mk 80 series
  • M117 750lb bomb
  • Mk 20 Rockeye

Other weaponsEdit

  • Mk 44 Torpedo
  • Hydra-70 Rocket System



The markings of the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force have changed little since the 1979 Revolution. The above roundel and tail flash are the standard national markings. Squadron markings are not used. On the fuselage, Air Force aircraft have the lettering IRIAF (pre-1979, the lettering was IIAF for Imperial Iranian Air Force). Navy aircraft have IRIN, and Army have IRIA.

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