Russian aviation is presenting one of its most vivid and memorable displays at this year’s Paris Air Show. Three military aircraft, the Su-35 multirole fighter, the Yak-130 combat training aircraft and the Ka-52 attack helicopter are participating in the flight displays above Le Bourget airfield. Aircraft and equipment represented 37 percent of deliveries by Russia’s Rosoboronexport export agency in 2012.
The Su-35 is designed to plug the gap between the existing Su-30 and future fifth-generation fighters. The aircraft incorporates fifth-generation technologies, according to Rosoboronexport, with new information management and fly-by-wire flight control system, Irbis-E phased-array radar and higher thrust NPO-Saturn 117S engines capable of reaching supersonic speed without using afterburner.
“The Su-35 is stirring keen interest among the air forces in many countries,” the agency said. “It is the fighter that will be among the main actors on the international arms market in the medium term. Nevertheless, Su-30MK-type fighters are still of immediate interest and Russian industry is ready to upgrade them so they will be capable of employing the latest airborne weapons.”
Rosoboronexport (Chalet B367, Halls 4B 188 and 4D 187-188) said the latest MiG-29 full mission simulator will be shown at Le Bourget. The MiG-29M/M2 and MiG-29K/KUB series feature the latest modifications of the venerable fighter. MiG-29K shipborne fighters are being delivered to the Indian navy.
In the training segment, Rosoboronexport offers the Yak-130 two-seat advanced jet trainer/light attack aircraft, suitable for training pilots of both light tactical fighters and heavy multirole fighters. Powered by twin Ivchenko Progress AI-222-25 engines, the high-performance aircraft “will forgive many errors of novice pilots,” the agency said. Yak-130s are being fielded by the Russian air force, where they will replace Czech L-39s; in addition the aircraft has been delivered to a number of overseas customers.
One of the fastest-growing segments of Russian arms exports is helicopters. In 2012, helicopter exports through Rosoboronexport alone increased by 40 percent and comparable growth is expected by the end of this year, the agency said.
The Mi-17 series helicopters “are still the undisputed best-selling product,” the agency said. “Efficient, reliable, easy to pilot and operate, they have literally conquered the world and have become indispensable workhorses for carrying out various tasks in the most difficult climate and, no less important, in heavy combat conditions, owing to their superior survivability and effective mix of armaments.”
However, Rosoboronexport expects the coaxial rotor Ka-52 attack helicopter will generate the greatest interest at Le Bourget. The Ka-52 and the Mi-28NE attack helicopter are “actively entering the global market,” the agency said. “Both the helicopters are all-weather, can effectively operate at night, are heavily armored and carry various weapons.”
Rosoboronexport will also exhibit the upgraded Mi-26T2 heavy lift transport helicopter. The main difference with its predecessors is an all-new avionics suite.
Among air defense weapons Russian industry will display are the Igla-S man-portable air defense system (Manpads), the Pansir-S1 Spaagm system and the Tor-M2E and Buk-M2E surface-to-air missile systems.
“Given the recent trends in the international arms market, Rosoboronexport is ready not only to export finished products, but also to establish full-fledged industrial cooperation and carry out the joint development of new weapon models,” the agency said. “Work with India on the licensed production of Su-30MKI fighters and the development of the fifth generation tactical fighter and MTA multipurpose military transport aircraft are the best examples of such cooperation.”