Russian MiG-35 fighter jet could be Egypt’s next purchase
CAIRO, (BM) – International military markets are gradually recovering from the epidemic that was imposed by the coronavirus in almost all over the world during the summer. Trends are already beginning to be noticed, especially in the field of trade in aircraft.
Such is the impression of the American journalist from Military Watch, who claims that Cairo can focus on a new purchase from Russia in the field of medium and light range fighters. He suggests that Egypt may prefer the Russian MiG-35, learned BullgarianMilitary.com.
According to the journalist, the MiG-35 is increasingly becoming attractive and attracting attention on the international military markets. On the other hand, this fighter, as we have repeatedly written, is the improved and latest version of the legend in this business – MiG-29. Egypt has a good flotilla of these fighters anyway, and switching to their latest version (MiG-29) would be more than a logical step.
Cairo signed a contract with Moscow and long ago bought perhaps one of the best fighters in the world – Su-35. But these aircraft are expensive, while the MiG-35 may be more than suitable to complement the Egyptian air flotilla. Al-Sisi, the president of Egypt, is said to have already taken a serious look at the MiG-35 and is expected to make contact with Russia soon.
The journalist also makes a comparison between another option that Cairo should focus on, namely the Chinese equivalents in this class. According to him, the Chinese J-10C and JF-17 Block 3 fighters (the latter is a Sino-Pakistani development) are not a good option. Despite their lower prices than their competitor MiG-35, they do not have its capabilities and weapon systems, and the future situation in the region suggests that it will require more precise air technology.
More about Russian fighter jet MiG-35
The RSK MiG-35 multi-purpose combat aircraft is a modernized version of the Soviet MiG-29M2. Unofficially, the MiG-35 is also called the Super Fulcrum. The MiG-35 is currently available in two versions, the single-seat MiG-35 and the two-seat MiG-35D.
In the mid-1990s, the need to modernize the MiG-29 model became increasingly clear. The design goals were more versatile applications and the coordination with new air-to-air and air-to-ground weapon systems. In addition, the fuel capacity and thus the range should be increased and the workload of the pilot should be reduced by modern cockpit equipment.
From a purely external point of view, the changes compared to the MiG-29 model appeared to be minor, but the cell based on the MiG-29K variant, which was suitable for the carrier, was largely completely redesigned.
Above all, clearly visible changes are enlarged air inlets and a new kind of protective net against foreign bodies in the air inlets. The previous additional air intakes on the top were no longer available, and the space freed up was used for additional tanks.
The fuselage hump has been enlarged and now runs to the end of the fuselage. An enlarged air brake was installed on the hump. The originally rounded edges of the wing root extensions (LERX) were designed with sharp edges in order to improve the generation of buoyant air vortices in extreme flight conditions.
The MiG-35 was developed in the city of Luchowizy in the Moscow Oblast.
Up until 2013, 37 aircraft were expected to be procured before it became known that the industry could not have provided the required capacity. The purchase was initially postponed to 2016. At the time of announcing the delivery of two aircraft to the Department of Defense for testing in 2016, no definitive procurement contract was signed.
In January 2017, Colonel-General Viktor Bondarev, commander-in-chief of the Russian Air and Space Forces, announced that all light fighter planes in Russia should be replaced by MiG-35 multi-purpose combat aircraft.
There is a total need for 170 comparable aircraft, but he did not give a definite date for this. The previous day, it had been announced that the Russian MiG-35 multi-purpose combat aircraft had completed its first sightseeing flight in Luchowizy near Moscow on January 27.
In 2017, the leadership of the Russian Air Force announced that after successfully completing the flight tests, an order for 30 MiG-35s would be placed.
Russia sold 26 Su-35 fighter jets to Egypt totalling $3 billion
On May 15 this year, Egypt signed a contract with Russia to acquire the largest batch of Russian Su-35 fighters.
At the moment, it is known that we are talking about the purchase of 26 combat vehicles, moreover, the first two Egyptian air force fighters will receive this year, and full fulfillment of obligations is scheduled until 2023.
In fact, Egypt will become the first country in the Middle East to receive first-class Russian combat aircraft, and the second foreign owner of Russian Su-35 fighters.
It should be noted that one of the reasons for the acquisition of Russian military equipment was the US refusal to sell its fifth-generation fighter planes to this country, and, most likely, Egypt could conclude a contract for the acquisition of the Su-35 earlier, however, Washington announced its readiness to impose sanctions against Egypt for the acquisition of Russian weapons.
Given the position of Egypt, it is obvious that Su-35 fighters are of great interest to the Egyptian Air Force, and the current “victory” of the Su-35 over the F-35 will almost certainly become a reason for concluding contracts by other countries.
“Against the background of the rearmament of Israel, Egypt is fully aware that they need reliable fighters capable of cracking down on both the F-16 and the F-35,” the specialist notes. The amount of the contract concluded between Egypt and Russia is not called, however, it is probably about 3 billion dollars.
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