10 Mar 2018 11:43

No massive procurement of MiG-35 by Russian Aerospace Forces planned in near future - source

MOSCOW. March 10 (Interfax-AVN) - There will be no massive procurement of Mikoyan MiG-35 fighter jets by the Russian military in the near future, an informed source told Interfax.

"The light fighter fleet will not shift to this type of aircraft any time soon," the source said.

The maximum possible purchase is one squadron set, he said.

Viktor Bondarev said in his being the Aerospace Force's commander that the entire fleet of light aircraft would be replaced with MiG-35.

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yury Borisov said in July 2017 that the procurement of MiG-35 fighters would start in 2018. "Hopefully, the export potential of these light fighters will increase after their delivery to the Russian Aerospace Forces," Bondarev said.

According to MiG General Director Ilya Tarasenko, the corporation is working on MiG-35 delivery contracts with 29 countries currently operating MiG-29 aircraft, among them Kazakhstan, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Peru, and some other Latin American countries.

MiG-35 is the latest product in the MiG family. It is powered by profoundly modernized RD-33 engines, RD-33MK, with a service life of over 4,000 hours. The airborne avionic station can detect and track from ten to 30 airborne targets on a range of 160 kilometers, and simultaneously lock up to six airborne targets and four ground targets.

MiG-35 has a modern defense system minimizing the risk of a surprise attack by the enemy and identifying types of aircraft and missiles.

MiG-35 is armed with new weapons, including those operating on a long range, which enables the aircraft to attack targets without entering air defense zones. The plane can operate in the air-to-air, air-to-ground, and air-to-ship modes.

United Aircraft Corporation head Yury Slyusar said in January 2017 that MiG-35 was also capable of carrying laser weapons.