British frontline troops in Afghanistan are so short of helicopters and transport planes that they are being bailed out by the Russians.
The Mail on Sunday has established that the Ministry of Defence is using civilian Russian-built Mi-8 and Mi-26 transport helicopters to ferry supplies and soldiers in Afghanistan. The pilots are freelance Russians and Ukrainians.
Britain is also hiring massive commercial Russian Antonov aircraft to fly vehicles and heavy equipment from RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire to Afghanistan.
BTW I READ THAT RUSSIA IS GONNA START PRODUCING NEW ANTONOVS AGAIN!!!
One of the most powerful and agile fighting helicopters in the world cuts through the air like an arrow. The armor-plated beast KA-52, aka The Alligator, wows the crowds at the MAKS International Air Show near Moscow.
The skies near Moscow are seeing the best of Russian and international aerobatics as the third day of the MAKS International Air Show gets underway.
On the so-called “Moscow Day” officials from the Moscow government are attending the event to strike deals with aircraft makers, as the Russian capital has its very own civic airline and uses different types of aircraft to patrol the skies around the city.
The main deal of the third day worth $1.2 billion is a contract between Russia’s Ilyushin Finance Co. (IFC) and Moscow’s Atlant-Soyuz Airlines over the lease of 30 AN148-100 and 15 TU-204SM planes.
The first two days of the air show have been quite successful as well, and deals struck include the contract for the supply of 20 Russian helicopters to a company based in the United Arab Emirates and the purchase by Rosavia airline of 65 narrow-body aircraft from domestic and foreign manufacturers.
The MAKS International Air Show in Moscow is one of the major air shows of the year, says Boeing Russia/CIS President Sergey Kravchenko, and it’s obvious that the Russian government pays a lot of attention to it despite the economic crisis.
The show is well-organized and provides both good business opportunities and lots of pleasure for people interested aviation, Kravchenko adds.
The Russian Air Force Commander has also heralded the MAKS 2009 air show a great success.
“We have a long-term contract to receive Su-34 fighters and we're also planning to purchase the new Yak-30 fighters, modernized Mi-28NM attack helicopters, and the newest Ka-52 helicopters. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has ordered the modernization of the Russian Armed forces, and this obviously includes the Air Force,” Col. Gen. Aleksandr Zelin said.
The Moscow Day was opened by solitary KA helicopter carrying a Moscow flag over the MAKS flying field. The Alligator: more bite than The Black Shark?
The Alligator is armed to the teeth with weapons more advanced and superior than existing combat helicopters.
KA-52 carries a dozen anti-tank missiles which can hit a target eight kilometres away, a powerful 30-mm cannon and a huge battery of rockets work as a defence and aid in ground assaults.
Just like its predecessor KA-50 – The Black Shark – it has no tail rotor which is marks it apart from other flying predators.
Moreover, KA-52’s opposite-spinning blades make it immune to strong winds from all directions. Its simple handling could be crucial in combat. The Alligator can work in almost any weather, day or night. And its unique tail design means it needs less space to land which is handy for working in the mountains, the forest, or even in the city.
Pilots say operating The Alligator is like driving an automatic after driving a manual.
“It’s easier to land and easier to take off. With a tail rotor you have to manage both – that one and the one on top. But here you just don’t think about it. It’s very unfussy,” says elite test pilot Aleksandr Smirnov.
Twin rotor blades are the trademark of the whole family of Kamov (KA) helicopters. They add to the chopper’s manoeuvrability, safety, and they make it easier for pilots to handle the machine. And Kamov is the only brand in the world producing fighting helicopters without tail rotors.
And The Alligator’s aerial acrobatics are only the start as it is equipped with highly-advanced lasers and sophisticated data systems designed to make locating and targeting much easier.
Aleksandr Smirnov has been testing helicopters for thirty years, and says The Alligator is the most reliable chopper he’s ever piloted.
“We’ve never had a radar-location system like the one installed in this chopper. It has a very powerful attack warning system. Here we get accurate information about the objects that are aiming at the helicopter,” Aleksandr Smirnov explains.
One more unique characteristic of The Alligator is its twin-seat cockpit. Sitting side by side, the pilots can co-ordinate their actions better – and each can take control.
“Just imagine – you’re sitting in a car and your co-pilot is sitting behind you… how well can you correlate with him if you don’t see him? And here I can just look him in the eye and see what he's up to in any given situation. It’s like playing piano with four hands,” Aleksandr Smirnov says.
The KA-52 is going through its final tests. If successful, The Alligator can then be released into the wild – and become the powerhouse of Russia’s airborne special units.
Video of hit NATO chopper tugged by Giant Russian helicopter.
RussiaToday December 23, 2009
A Russian crew has successfully returned a NATO chopper to its airbase in Kandahar after the craft came under attack. The Dutch helicopter was damaged by gunfire in Southern Afghanistan. After being shot at, the Cougar helicopter made an emergency landing at an American military camp. It took the Russian Mi-26 half an hour to bring the 10-ton Cougar back. The Russian helicopter has been on similar rescue missions before, moving three of the U.S.'s largest Chinook helicopters - including one this October. The helicopter has been serving NATO troops in Afghanistan for more than three years. The Mi-26 is the biggest and most powerful helicopter ever to go into serial production.
The first Black Hawk helicopter manufactured in Poland rolls off production lines at the PZL Mielec company plant.
The Polish aerospace manufacturer, based in the southern town of Mielec, will produce 36 helicopters a year. Black Hawk S-70 is a medium transport/utility helicopter, which can perform a wide range of missions, including air and electronic warfare and medical evacuation duties.
The Polish Black Hawk’s debut comes a year after the presentation of its cabin, manufactured entirely by Polish engineers.
“We needed the best specialists with high qualifications and skills in order to assemble a Black Hawk’s cabin which consists of 2400 parts,” says Bob Kokorda from the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, a company based in Statford, the US, which bought PZL Mielec in March 2007 for 250 million zloty (64 million euro).
“Polish employees are very efficient and their work is of high quality” added Kokorda.
The demand for the helicopters around the world is estimated at about 500 machines a year. (mg)
Russia could modernize Slovakian combat helicopters.
Russia could help Slovakia modernize its fleet of Soviet-made combat helicopters, a Russian presidential aide said on Tuesday.
Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev will visit Slovakia on April 6-7 at the invitation of Slovakia's President Ivan Gasparovic. The presidents are planning to discuss military-technical cooperation among other issues.
"We are conducting talks on repairs and modernization of Mi-17 and Mi-35 helicopters in service with the Slovakian air force," Sergei Prikhodko said.
The Slovakian combat helicopter fleet is composed entirely of Russian types, including the Mi-35 (an export version of the Mi-24 Hind), Mi-17 (an export version of the Mi-8 Hip) and Mi-2 Hoplite models.
In 2008, Russia gave 12 modernized MiG-29 fighters to Slovakia.
The 12 MiG-29AS/MiG-29UBS fighters were upgraded in Slovakia by the MiG company and Western firms for NATO compatibility under a 2004 contract. The Slovak Air Force currently has a total of 21 MiG-29 aircraft in service.
Post by TsarSamuil on Apr 19, 2010 11:14:25 GMT -5
Mi-35M copters handed over to Brazil's Air Force in ceremony.
RIO-DEJANEIRO, April 18 (Itar-Tass) -- The Brazilian Air Force has received the first three Mi-35M transport and combat helicopters.
The handing-over ceremony and a military parade in this connection took place at the Brazilian air base of Porto Velho in the southwestern Amazon region on Saturday.
A Russian delegation headed by Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev participated in the ceremony. Rosoboronexport’s director-general Anatoly Isaikin and the Rostvertol Rostov-based helicopter plant’s director-general Boris Slyusar also arrived at the base.
Brazil's representatives were Defence Minister Nelson Jobim and the Air Force commander in chief.
Rosoboronexport concluded the contract in 2008 to supply Russian transport and combat helicopters to Brazil.
Experts say the Mi-35M has proved to be an excellent helicopter that can work under extremely heavy conditions of the hot and humid Amazon rainforest climate. Local pilots very highly appraise the reliability and other operational qualities of the aircraft that has impressive piloting and technical characteristics.
Russian company unveils plans for 5th-generation 'invisible' helicopters.
A Russian helicopter company is planning to develop the world's first fifth-generation combat helicopter, which experts say would be able to attack fighter jets and be invisible for radars, the Gazeta daily said on Thursday.
"We are working on the concept of the fifth-generation combat helicopter," the paper quoted the company's CEO, Andrei Shibitov, as saying at a news conference in Moscow.
Shibitov did not specify the characteristics of the helicopter, but said the company was going to spend some $1 billion on the project, with more investment expected to be allocated from the state budget.
The official said the Mil design bureau had been working on a classical rotor model, which features a large main rotor and a smaller auxiliary rotor, while the Kamov design bureau had been developing a coaxial rotor model.
Military experts believe that the coaxial rotor model is more stable and easy to fly while the classical model is more reliable and has a higher degree of survivability on the battlefield.
First deputy head of the Russian Academy of Geopolitical Issues, Konstantin Sivkov, told the paper that fifth-generation combat helicopters have never been built before, although the United States has recently begun working on a similar project.
He said a fifth-generation combat helicopter must have a low radar signature, a high noise reduction, an extended flying range, be equipped with a computerized arms control system, be able to combat fighter jets (existing helicopters are generally only intended to hit ground-based targets) and reach a speed of up to 500-600 km/h (310-370 mph).
The project cannot proceed, however, unless it is backed by the government.
"If the government does not sign a contract, the idea will die on the vine," head of the Russian Academy of Geopolitical Issues Leonid Ivashov told Gazeta.
Ivashov said that with sufficient investment and good organization the new helicopter could be built within five years. Otherwise, the project may drag on for 20-30 years.
But he was somewhat skeptical about the chances of carrying out the project.
"We have been trying to tackle everything - fifth-generation planes, fifth-generation helicopters, but nothing of this have so far been supplied to the army - today the army still uses helicopters produced in 1970s," Ivashov said.
Russia's main combat helicopter, the Mi-24 Hind, is a third-generation helicopter, and a few Mi-28 Havoc, Ka-50 and Ka-52 Hokum, which have just started to arrive in the Russian army, are fourth-generation helicopters.
MOSCOW, May 13 (RIA Novosti)
Last Edit: May 13, 2010 20:38:34 GMT -5 by TsarSamuil
Post by TsarSamuil on May 24, 2010 19:47:42 GMT -5
Algeria to halve arms purchases from U.S., buy from Russia - paper.
The Algerian Defense Ministry decided to halve arms purchases from the U.S., while seeking to buy analogous weapons from Russia, a local newspaper said on Monday.
The decision was made following long delays in U.S. arms deliveries since 2007.
"The delay in the deliveries of modern types of weapons from the United States has prompted the Algerian Defense Ministry to defer plans to purchase new arms systems which are deployed in the fight against terrorism," El Khabar newspaper said citing defense officials.
Among reasons cited for the delays were Washington's rigorous standards on arms sales to other countries as well as pressure from Israel on arms suppliers.
According to the newspaper, Algeria is looking to purchase modern weapons from Russia, and has also scrapped earlier plans to set up a squadron of U.S.-made Apache helicopters.
Instead, Algeria intends to purchase Russian fourth-generation helicopters, the Mi-28 Havoc, which cost four times less than their U.S. analogs and Ka-52 Alligator Hokum-2.
Algeria, alongside India, China, Venezuela, Malaysia and Syria, is one of Russia's main customers for arms. Vietnam also emerged as a key importer after it signed a deal to buy submarines, aircraft and other military hardware from Russia late last year.
Post by TsarSamuil on Jun 21, 2010 11:36:41 GMT -5
U.S. military criticized for purchase of Russian copters for Afghan air corps.
By Craig Whitlock Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, June 19, 2010; A01
The U.S. government is snapping up Russian-made helicopters to form the core of Afghanistan's fledgling air force, a strategy that is drawing flak from members of Congress who want to force the Afghans to fly American choppers instead.
In a turnabout from the Cold War, when the CIA gave Stinger missiles to Afghan rebels to shoot down Soviet helicopters, the Pentagon has spent $648 million to buy or refurbish 31 Russian Mi-17 transport helicopters for the Afghan National Army Air Corps. The Defense Department is seeking to buy 10 more of the Mi-17s next year, and had planned to buy dozens more over the next decade.
The spectacle of using U.S. taxpayer dollars to buy Russian military products is proving a difficult sell in Congress. Some legislators say that the Pentagon never considered alternatives to the Mi-17, an aircraft it purchased for use in Iraq and Pakistan, and that a lack of competition has enabled Russian defense contractors to gouge on prices.
"The Mi-17 program either has uncoordinated oversight or simply none at all," said Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), who along with Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) has pushed the Pentagon to reconsider its purchase plans. "The results have led to massive waste, cost overruns, schedule delays, safety concerns and major delivery problems."
U.S. and Afghan military officials who favor the Mi-17, which was designed for use in Afghanistan, acknowledge that it might seem odd for the Pentagon to invest in Russian military products. But they said that changing helicopter models would throw a wrench into the effort to train Afghan pilots, none of whom can fly U.S.-built choppers.
"If people come and fly in Afghanistan with the Mi-17, they will understand why that aircraft is so important to the future for Afghanistan," said Brig. Gen. Michael R. Boera, the U.S. Air Force general in charge of rebuilding the Afghan air corps. "We've got to get beyond the fact that it's Russian. . . . It works well in Afghanistan."
U.S. military officials have estimated that the Afghan air force won't be able to operate independently until 2016, five years after President Obama has said he intends to start withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan. But Boera said that date could slip by at least two years if Congress forces the Afghans to fly U.S. choppers . "Is that what we really want to do?" he asked.
The U.S. military has been trying to resurrect the decimated Afghan National Army Air Corps since 2005, when it consisted of a few dozen furloughed pilots and a handful of decrepit Mi-17s.
Because Afghan airmen had historically trained on Russian choppers, the Pentagon decided to make the Mi-17s the backbone of Afghanistan's fleet. The Soviet Union specifically designed the Mi-17 for use in Afghanistan. U.S. officials say it is well-suited for navigating the altitudes of the Hindu Kush mountains, as well as Afghanistan's desert terrain.
With few reliable roads, helicopters are a primary mode of transport in Afghanistan. U.S. forces depend on them to deploy troops to isolated areas, provide them with supplies and airlift them out when they are wounded. Until recently, Afghan pilots have steered clear of combat but have used their Mi-17s to transport high-ranking Afghan officials, including President Hamid Karzai. U.S. officials hope the Afghan air corps eventually will be able to defend its own skies and serve the fast-growing Afghan National Army.
Afghans are also training on Mi-35 Russian-made attack helicopters and Italian-designed C-27s, a fixed-wing aircraft used to transport troops and supplies. The air corps has 48 aircraft and 3,300 personnel.
Boera said plans are to expand to 146 aircraft and 8,000 personnel by 2016. Pentagon officials said they had originally projected that Mi-17s would compose half the fleet, but they are considering scaling back.
About 450 U.S. service personnel are in Afghanistan to train and advise the Afghan airmen. Training the air corps has been a painstakingly slow process, much more so than U.S. efforts to train Afghanistan's national army and police.
Afghan pilot recruits, many of whom are illiterate in their native tongue, are required to learn English -- the official language of the cockpit -- before they can earn their wings. U.S. officials say it usually takes two to five years to train an entire flight crew.
So far, only one Afghan pilot has graduated from flight school in the United States, although dozens are in the pipeline. That has forced the air corps to rely on pilots who learned to fly Mi-17s during the days of Soviet and Taliban rule.
Gen. Mohammed Dawran, chief of the Afghan air corps, said most of those pilots are in their 40s and set in their ways. Requiring them to start fresh on U.S. copters would be an uphill battle.
"They learned the previous system and different ideas," he said in an interview. Most of the veterans also don't know how to fly at night or in poor visibility, when a pilot must rely on an aircraft's instrument panel to navigate.
The Russian choppers are far more basic birds than U.S. models such as the UH-60 Black Hawk or the CH-47 Chinook. The Mi-17 is steered with a stick and rudder and usually lacks such amenities as Global Positioning System navigation. Afghan maintenance crews, accustomed to making do with whatever materials are handy, are skilled in making repairs with used soda cans and other makeshift parts.
The U.S. government has bought Russian choppers for other allies as well. The Pentagon purchased eight Mi-17s for the Iraqi air force, although defense officials say they have no plans to acquire more. The Defense Department has also purchased or leased 14 Mi-17s for Pakistan, although Islamabad recently returned some after a crash raised questions about their safety.
In addition, the U.S. Special Operations Command would like to buy a few Mi-17s of its own, so that special forces carrying out clandestine missions could cloak the fact that they are American.
"We would like to have some to blend in and do things," said a senior U.S. military official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the clandestine program. "But the Russians know this. Russia has a small monopoly on Mi-17s. They are now exorbitantly priced."
Critics in Congress said the price per chopper has tripled since 2006, from $6 million to $18 million. Pentagon officials dispute this, saying that the lower prices were for used, less capable Mi-17s, and newer models retail for about $15 million.
Defense officials and analysts said that U.S. helicopter manufacturers, struggling to produce enough aircraft for U.S. forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, might not have the capacity to make more for the Afghan air corps right away.
Still, under pressure from Congress, U.S. defense officials have indicated that they are leaning away from their Russian buying binge.
"As a 'Buy American' kind of individual, I think it's totally appropriate as we go forward that we continue to assess the program," Army Secretary John McHugh, whose service oversees foreign helicopter purchases, told the Senate Appropriations Committee in March.
Staff writer Greg Miller contributed to this report.
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Jan 10, 2020 14:27:01 GMT -5
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Mar 15, 2020 10:48:19 GMT -5
Deleted: On FB, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok etc.
Apr 19, 2020 4:29:09 GMT -5
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May 18, 2020 9:10:02 GMT -5
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Jun 5, 2020 14:56:11 GMT -5
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Jun 20, 2020 3:10:01 GMT -5
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Jun 28, 2020 13:54:49 GMT -5
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Jul 15, 2020 14:52:53 GMT -5
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Aug 30, 2020 13:48:17 GMT -5