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5 new MiG-29K carrier-borne jets join Indian Navy

Last updated on: May 31, 2011 17:27 IST

5 new MiG-29K carrier-borne jets join Indian Navy

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Indian naval aviation has acquired new teeth with induction of nine MiG-29K carrier-borne fighter jets from Russia with an extended range of 3,000 kms and capable of firing air-to-air and air-to-sea missiles.

The Russian MiG Aircraft Corporation has delivered the second batch of five MiG-29K fighter jets to the navy, to add to its four, for which it has raised the new "Black Panthers" squadron.

India along with Russia, the manufacturer of the naval fighter, are the only countries to have acquired these fighters, which will be deployed on the INS Vikramaditya (former Gorshkov) aircraft carrier, under re-fit in Russia.

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Image: The Mig-29KUB

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5 new MiG-29K carrier-borne jets join Indian Navy

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The newly-acquired Russian carrier-operated MiGs are considered to be far superior to Indian Navy's current Sea Harrier jump jets.

Under the Gorshkov aircraft deal inked between the two countries in 2004, Russia is to supply 12 single-seater MiG-29K fighters and four two-seater MiG-29KUB trainer-cum-combat jets.

According to a MiG release, first of four MiG-29Ks and MiG-29KUBs delivered to India have been formally inducted by the Indian Navy's 'Black Panthers' squadron in February 2010.

MiG Corporation has also delivered flight simulator and other technical equipment to the Indian Navy.


Image: The MiG-29K

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In March 2010, Russia and India signed another $1.5 billion contract on the supplies of 29 additional MiG-29K Fulcrum-D carrier-based fighter jets and the deliveries are scheduled to commence next year, about the time Moscow is expected to deliver retrofitted Gorshkov aircraft carrier after serious delays.

Single-seat MiG-29K and twin-stick MiG-29KUB are multifunctional ship borne fighters designed for the Navy units' air defense missions, gaining air superiority, destroying ground and sea targets with the high-precision guided and unguided armament round-the-clock in any weather. 

The MiG-29К/КUB fighters differ from earlier produced MiG-29 aircraft by:
- improved operational performance; 
- increased reliability of aggregates, systems and assemblies; 
- service life extended by over 2 times; 
- improved fuel system capacity and increased combat load. 


Image: MiG-29K Fulcrum-D

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While creating MiG-29K/KUB airframe, power plant and avionics the most advanced technologies were employed. The share of composites within the airframe equals almost 15%. The aircraft are equipped with the updated RD-33MK engines featuring the increased thrust and extended service life. 

The fighters' avionics suite open architecture allows integration of the new Russian and foreign-made equipment and armament onboard the aircraft. 

The MiG-29К/КUB are fitted with the modern multifunctional multimode pulse-Doppler onboard radar "Zhuk-МE" and state-of-the-art optronic systems. 

The representatives of the Indian MoD and Navy actively participated in finalizing the MiG-29K/KUB technical configuration. In some areas they have set up the requirements exceeding world standards. 

The MiG-29К/КUB aircraft are at the core of the new unificated fighters' family, which also includes MiG-29M/M2 and MiG-35/MiG-35D. 



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