"There are more opportunities": how the replenishment of troops with MiG-35S fighters will strengthen the defense capability of Russia
13 March 2021, 08:01Irina Taran, Elizaveta Komarova
The newest multifunctional MiG-35S fighters were delivered to the Russian troops as part of the state defense order. This is reported by the newspaper of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation "Krasnaya Zvezda". The MiG-35 is a 4 ++ generation fighter, an upgraded version of the MiG-29. The designers have increased its combat effectiveness, versatility and operational characteristics. At the same time, the cost of a flight hour of the MiG-35 aircraft has been reduced 2.5 times compared to the operating costs of its predecessor. The newest fighter is capable of striking high-precision weapons against ground and surface targets without entering the air defense zone day and night, in any weather conditions. According to experts, the most important quality of the MiG-35 is its versatility, which expands the range of possible applications for the Russian fighter.
New multifunctional fighters MiG-35S were delivered to the Russian troops as part of the state defense order. This is reported in the infographics published in the newspaper of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation "Krasnaya Zvezda".
Recall that the presentation of the car took place in January 2017 in the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin. In July of the same year, the aircraft was presented at the International Aviation and Space Salon in Zhukovsky (MAKS), and a month later, in August 2017, at the Army forum.
The contract for the supply of six MiG-35s until 2023 was signed by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and the MiG company at the Army-2018 forum in Kubinka near Moscow. According to the agreement, the military department will receive aircraft in single and double (combat training) modifications "S" and "UB".
As the general director of the Russian aircraft-building corporation "MiG" Ilya Tarasenko said in an interview with RIA Novosti, it is planned that the newest MiG-35 will replace the MiG-29 fighters, which the Russian Ministry of Defense received back in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
"Based on new generation technologies"
The MiG-35 is the newest 4 ++ generation multipurpose fighter, an upgraded version of the MiG-29 light front-line aircraft. According to the designers, the new vehicle has an increased fuel and combat load capacity, which has significantly increased its efficiency and versatility.
Significant differences between the MiG-35 and other aircraft of the MiG-29 family are increased combat survivability, the possibility of using promising aircraft weapons of Russian and foreign production, as well as the integration of fifth-generation information and sighting systems into the avionics.
According to the manufacturer, the main tasks set for the MiG-35 are to gain air supremacy in confrontation with fourth and fifth generation fighters, intercept air attack weapons, deliver precision weapons strikes against ground and surface targets without entering the air defense zone day and night. , in all weather conditions.
In addition, the MiG-35 fighter is capable of conducting aerial reconnaissance using optoelectronic and radio equipment. It can also be part of an aviation group, in particular, to implement the functions of its air command post.
"The aircraft is capable of performing complex missions in a continuously changing operational and tactical situation over the battlefield, which is one of the main requirements for fifth-generation aviation systems," the Russian Defense Ministry notes.
According to the developers, the upgraded version of the MiG-29 has significantly improved operational characteristics: the reliability of the aircraft, its engine and avionics has been significantly increased. In addition, the developers have increased the service life of the fighter and the engine overhaul life.
At the same time, the cost of a flight hour of the MiG-35 has decreased 2.5 times compared to the MiG-29.
According to the developers, the onboard radio-electronic equipment of the MiG-35 was created “on the basis of new generation technologies”. We are talking about a multifunctional radar with an active phased antenna array, as well as an optical location station with infrared, television and laser sighting equipment.
“The MiG-35 is equipped with the latest airborne defense system, which includes electronic reconnaissance, radio countermeasures, optoelectronic systems for detecting attacking missiles and laser irradiation, automatic launching of false targets in the radar and infrared ranges. This system makes it possible to effectively ensure the survivability of the aircraft under the conditions of the intensive influence of the enemy's air defense, ”the Russian defense ministry said in a statement.
According to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, the modern airborne radar on the MiG-35 gives the pilot the ability to "detect and track from ten to 30 air targets at a distance of up to 160 km, while simultaneously engaging up to six air and four ground targets".
The maximum take-off weight of the fighter is 24.5 tons, the maximum speed is 2100 km / h, and the service ceiling (stable flight in a horizontal position) is 16 km.
"Approaching the fifth generation"
As the executive director of the Aviaport agency, Oleg Panteleev, said in a commentary to RT, the most important property of the MiG-35 is "the possibility of its widespread combat use".
“Having received this aircraft, the Russian Aerospace Forces can not only solve the tasks typical of the MiG-29 to destroy air targets, but also attack ground and surface targets through the use of high-precision guided weapons without entering the air defense zone. And this significantly expands the range of possible options for using the MiG-35, ”he said.
In addition, all types of guided and unguided missiles are available for the newest fighter, Panteleev noted.
“Including long-range anti-ship and anti-radar missiles capable of hitting targets at a distance of more than 200 km. This is partly facilitated by the use of a new generation multifunctional radar station, which has received an increased range, due to which it is possible to detect and identify, as well as track a larger number of targets at a greater distance, ”the expert explained.
Popov also noted that the update of the MiG-35 affected the power plant and engines with a modular design, which are now distinguished by increased reliability.
“While retaining its recognizable appearance, the aircraft has indeed acquired new capabilities of the 4 ++ generation, in a number of parameters it is approaching the fifth generation. And all this against the background, which is important, the reduced cost of operation, which is achieved by increasing the reliability and resource of the unit, "- explained the analyst.
In turn, Honored Pilot of the Russian Federation, Major General Vladimir Popov, in an interview with RT, said that the newest fighter has more suspension points for weapons than the MiG-29.
“In addition, in addition to air-to-air missiles, the MiG-35 now has adjustable bombs ,” Popov said.
Composite materials are widely used in the design of the airframe and wings of the MiG-35, the expert added.
“There was no such diversity in the MiG-29. The new fighter was made using carbon and fiberglass. Due to this, the aircraft has become lighter than its predecessor and can now take more fuel on board or additional weapons. In this sense, the combat potential of the MiG-35 significantly exceeds the capabilities of a number of other light fighters, ”the expert said.
In addition, the MiG-35 has improved maneuverability, Popov said.
“If the plane is lighter, then it has more possibilities. At the same time, it can also implement a number of those tasks that heavy fighters perform, ”the analyst emphasized.
Assessing the export chances of the domestic multi-role fighter, Popov said that India would most likely become one of the most likely buyers of Russian aircraft. Earlier, the MiG-35 was announced as part of a tender for the supply of more than 100 aircraft to the Indian Ministry of Defense.
“India already has a lot of Russian equipment. They don't need to change ground infrastructure. For the MiG-35, both tankers and other equipment, including radar, adapted to Russian standards, are suitable. It is more profitable and easier for the Indian side to continue using Russian fighters than to acquire equipment from other countries and completely change the infrastructure, which will entail additional costs, ”the expert explained.
In addition, as Denis Manturov , head of the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade, said in February last year , the Russian MiG-35 multipurpose fighters "are superior to many competitors in terms of flight performance and combat properties." Manturov also called Russia "the best supplier of modern combat aircraft for India".
Panteleev, in turn, added that the Indian side "is considering Russia's proposal quite attentively."
“The Russian development of the MiG-35 is better in terms of price-quality ratio than foreign fighters. In addition, Russia is ready to transfer some technologies to India. Here the Russian Federation demonstrates great openness in terms of the implementation of cooperation projects and the possibility of aircraft unification. In general, the MiG-29, the progenitor of the MiG-35, is well known to the Indian military. For this reason, the purchase of the latest Russian fighters would be a good decision for New Delhi, ”the analyst concluded.