MiG-35 comes with combined onboard equipment from Su-30/Su-35
MOSCOW, RUSSIA — It became known that in the coming years, the Russian Air Force will receive a large batch of modernized MiG-35 fighters. TASS, RIA Novosti, and other Russian media reported this. They quote the head of the United Aircraft Corporation, Mr. Yuri Slyusar.
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Mr. Slusar’s remarks came from the sidelines of the international aerospace exhibition Aero India 2023. Russia is participating in the exhibition, which is being held in the Indian city of Bangalore. However, the head of the UAC emphasized that in 2023, the delivery of MiG-35 fighters to the Russian Air Force is not foreseen.
The MiG-35 belongs to the latest modification of the multipurpose fighter generation 4++ and is an improved naval version of the MiG-29K/KUB aircraft. That is, this aircraft is ideal for the role of an aircraft carrier.
Likely, some of the MiG-35s scheduled for delivery to the Ministry of Defense will be ordered for the Russian Navy this year. The first new modernized MiG-35s are expected to become part of the Russian air force next year. It is assumed that one part of the multi-purpose fighter will be provided for the naval forces of the Russian Federation. More specifically, the MiG-35 will end up on board the only Russian aircraft carrier, Admiral Kuznetsov.
According to the head of the United Shipbuilding Company, Mr. Alexei Rakhmanov, due to previously discovered additional defects, the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov will not be ready for delivery to the fleet until the first quarter of 2024.
It is known that the modernization of the MiG-35 will mainly involve onboard equipment. According to information from Mikoyan’s sources, the new avionics and some systems of the updated version of the MiG-35 will be unified by the onboard equipment of fighters in the latest modification of the Su-30SM2 and Su-35SM.
Another source also confirms this information. According to him, Mikoyan undertook the unification of onboard equipment after the merger of Sukhoi and MiG Corporation. It is said that for several years UAC has been actively working in this direction.
It is also worth noting that on the sidelines of the Aero India 2023 aerospace exhibition, as part of a tender for the supply of 114 light fighters to India, the UAC offered the Indian side to assemble fighters based on the MiG-35 aircraft at the Indian HAL plant.
Earlier, Mr. Vladimir Drozhzhov, Deputy Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation of the Russian Federation, said that the UAC already expects India to open a tender for the supply of fighter jets to the Indian Air Force.
There are no orders
The MiG-35 Fulcrum-F is no ordinary fighter. Little attention is paid to it, both apparently by the Russian government and the Russian media. However, there are no orders. First, it was Egypt, which became interested in this combat aircraft, but subsequently purchased the MiG-29M. Then there was interest from India. Failure again. Competitors F-16, F/A-18, Eurofighter Typhoon, and JAS 39 Gripen also contributed to the lack of interest. But Russia “shot” its own MiG-35 – simply because it did not do enough to show its advantages.
The initial idea was for Russia to buy about 40 fighter jets. The MiG-35 was a success when it was introduced in 2005. In 2016, the fighter flew for the first time, and unlike other Russian aircraft, the tests and state evaluation ended without incident. All this led to the logical conclusion that Russia would order huge quantities of it. Subsequently, the foreign partners would buy it. But Russia missed the opportunity to show the MiG-35 in its usual light – super maneuverable, super dangerous, and super light. On the other hand, in typical Russian fashion, it abandoned the MiG-35 and focused on the production of the Su-57 and Su-75, and it is not at all clear where this production will go.
Interesting facts about the MiG-35
The MiG-35 can track up to 30 targets and engage six targets simultaneously. The MiG-35 has been described by the American publication 19fortyfive.com as a “brain power”. I.e. the aircraft can easily be integrated to operate autonomously with other air platforms and fighters of the Russian Air Force. Something achievable for today’s fifth-generation fighters [MiG-35 is 4++ gen].
The MiG-35 uses an active electronically scanned array [AESA] radar. This gives him a very strong advantage in fire control and lethality.
The MiG-35 can reach a top speed of Mach 2.25. It can fly at altitudes of up to 65,000 feet, and the airframe is designed to withstand 9G in the positive limits and 3G m in the negative limits. The MiG-35 is powered by two Klimov RD-33MK turbofan engines with an afterburner.
The MiG-35 would be a major success in Ukraine. This fighter is perfectly suited to be directly targeted against tanks, ships, and heavy artillery. It is armed with guided and unguided bombs, air-to-air, air-to-ground missiles, and a highly lethal 30mm cannon. The MiG-35 has an integrated electronic warfare pod, making it super suitable for attacking enemy air defense systems.
Western experts give it an “A” rating for maneuverability. This fighter is super maneuverable. It performs missions at supercritical angles of attack without any problems at an increased level of sustained and available g-loads and a high degree of yaw angle.
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