The Yakovlev Yak-52 is a two-seater tandem low wing civil and military aerobatic trainer aircraft with
semi-retractable tricycled landinggear. Development of the Yakovlev Yak-52, originally known Yak-50U, started
in 1973 as a successor of the Yakovlev Yak-18 training aircraft. The Yakovlev 52 was designed by the Yakovlev
Design Bureau as a trainer version of the single-seat Yak-50. The prototype was flown first in 1974. Production
was initiated in 1976 at the Intreprinderea de Avioane Bacau factory in Bacau, Romania and production of the
Yak-52 started in 1977. The Romanian prototype Yak-52 was flown first in May 1978 and deliveries started the same
year. The IAK-52 airplane is equipped with a 360 hp Ivchenko Vedeneyev M-14P nine cylinder, air-cooled radial
piston engine. The 400 hp M14PF can also be fitted. The Yak-52 was used in the Soviet Union as a basic military
trainer as well as primary and advanced aerobatic trainer. A vast majority is in use with the Russian DOSAAF
Clubs. The I.Av. Bacau was renamed Aerostar S.A. in 1991. Over 1800 have been produced to date starting with
series-production in 1979. At the peak of production 150 aircraft were manufactured per year. Aerostar in Bacau,
Romania is still producing the Yak-52 in limited numbers on request. The present Models are the Yak-52W, an
upgraded derivative with Western instruments, radio, electrical etc. and the tail wheel version Yak-52TW.
After the introduction of the Yak-52TW in the USA it was shown there was great demand for a cheaper version of
the Yak-52 tail dragger type of aircraft. Termikas, Lithuania, have undertaken a design study to convert
during overhaul or to supply as a "kit" the necessary parts for conversion of the standard YAK 52 to Tail
Dragger configuration: the Yak-52TD.
The by IAv Bacau built Yakovlev Yak-52 s/n 889204 entered service with the DOSAAF, a paramilitary sport organisation in the Soviet Union,
as yellow/136, later re-serialed yellow/86. After the 1988-built aircraft was decommissioned from DOSAAF services it was registered LY-AIK in Lithunia.
In 2000, the Yak-52 was registered N962KY in the USA. On 21 June 2005, Yakolev Yak-52 N962KY sustained substantial damage on impact with a ditch
during a forced landing following an in-flight loss of engine power on approach to the Columbus Municipal Airport (OLU), near Columbus, Nebraska.
The pilot was not injured. On 24 December 2008, registration N962KY was cancelled as exported to Lithunia, where the aircraft was registered LY-AXN.
In the Republic of Lithunia, the Yakovlev Yak-52 was converted to a tail dragger at UAB "Termikas", Preinai. With the more powerful 400 HP
Vedeneyev M-14P nine-cylinder, four-stroke, air-cooled radial engine and the optimized B530 TA D35 two blade propeller and the fully inward retractable
under carriage, the YAK-52TD has a remarkable performance. In March 2011, the aircraft was bought by the Kunstflug-Yak at Flugplatz Hatten in Germany,
as replacement for Yakovlev YAK-52 RA-2075K that was sold in the Netherlands. On 1 October 2011, Yakovlev (Aerostar) Yak-52TD LY-AXN was seen in
"DOSAAF white/319" colours at Flugplatz Hatten near Oldenburg, the home base of Kunstflug-Yak.