Russian air force to buy 30 Ka-226 helicopters by 2020
MOSCOW, January 16 (RIA Novosti)
The Russian Air Force is to acquire up to 30 Kamov Ka-226 light helicopters for courier and communications duties by 2020, Defense Ministry spokesman Vladimir Drik said on Monday.
“By the end of January the (Torzhok) center will get four light Ka-226 helicopters. By 2020 we plan to buy 30 of them,” he said.
The force’s helicopter training center at Torzhok received 17 new machines in December 2011 including the Mi-28N, Mi-35, Mi-8MTV and Ka-52, he said.
Not a huge number, but this is an Air Force order so the use of the Ka-226 on the Mistrals will require extra orders from the Russian Navy.
Looks like these helos will replace the Mi-2s, which is a very good thing.
Hopefully by 2020 they will have realised how useful this little helo is and will have ordered more.
In regard to the Russian engine that is even more powerful than the French engine they are using I thought this helo would be rather interesting for special forces use.
Imagine placing a sniper team high on the side of a mountain to wait in ambush for enemy forces moving towards that area.
With normal helicopter deployment they will have a lot of kit to carry and the altitude they can be deployed to will be limited by the altitude limits of most medium helicopters.
With the Ka-266 however you could configure the rear module to be a combined survival shelter/communications centre/storage point, that could be camouflaged to blend in to the surroundings with camouflage nets etc, but be fitted with radios and satellite communications systems. You could also store all sorts of equipment like laser range finders and target markers and high power telescopes... even long range sniper rifles and ATGMs like Metis-M or Kornet EM.
In places like Chechnia you could fit it out and position it to overlook commonly used transport trails.
On the side of a mountain small wind powered electrical generators can keep the small base powered and the hard shell provides protection from the elements when needed.
You could stack all sorts of stuff inside it and then when delivered to the observation site (preferably at night) you could first put up camouflage nets to conceal it and then put up tubes with propellers inside that you can point into the wind to generate electricity but without an externally visible moving thing that would stand out and be easy to see from far away.
Then take out the obsservation equipment and set it up to allow observation of the required directions and areas and then build up some local defences including traps and mines and flares to the approaches to the position.
Once all that is deployed you can take out the weapons and ammo so they are ready to use if needed and take all the food out to make space inside the pod for the team to shelter from extreme weather if needed.
The satellite communications equipment could be built into the pod with heavy batteries and antenna and of course wind generation of electricity to support its operation and to heat the pod.
As food and water is consumed over time you might get a middle of the night delivery from a UAV with stores that you can put all your rubbish and waste into to fly off and either dump or return to base to hide the extent and location of your operations.
An added advantage of having a system like Kornet EM is that it uses a thermal imager that can see targets out to 8-10km, so for observation that would be ideal. The fact that if needed you could engage targets to that range is a huge bonus.
If the position is compromised then air power can be brought in to deal with the enemy forces while a Ka-226 comes in and collects the team in the pod under cover of darkness preferably.
Such a capability would also be useful for border patrols that can be delivered to an area and they will have the pod as a base of operations.
Perched on the side of a mountain obviously you will want some method of securing the pod so it doesn't get blown off the side of a mountain, but the payoff will be excellent view of infiltration tracks for smugglers and criminals.