MIG-29

 

 

Mikoyan-Gurevich MIG - 29

At the end of the 1970s, the former Soviet Union was faced with a new generation of NATO-fighters conceived for air superiority. Including the F-15, F-16 and F-18. In response to this changed reality, they order the design agency and aircraft manufacturer Mikoyan-Gurevich to develop an aircraft that could deal with the NATO threat. The result of this order, the MIG-29, entered Soviet service in 1983, followed by other airforces of the Warsaw Pact and elsewhere a few years later. Contrary to the F-16, the Mig-29 has 2 engines instead of one and hydraulic controls rather than fly-by-wire.

POLAF - MIG29

While originally oriented towards combat against any enemy aircraft, many MiG-29s have been furnished as multirole fighters capable of performing a number of different operations, and are commonly outfitted to use a range of air-to-surface armaments and precision munitions.

 

The MiG-29 has been manufactured in several major variants, including the multirole Mikoyan MiG-29M and the navalised Mikoyan MiG-29K; the most advanced member of the family to date is the Mikoyan MiG-35.

 

Later models frequently feature improved engines, glass cockpits with HOTAS-compatible flight controls, modern radar and IRST sensors, and considerably increased fuel capacity; some aircraft have also been equipped for aerial refuelling.

Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the militaries of a number of former Soviet republics have continued to operate the MiG-29, the largest of which is the Russian Air Force. The Russian Air Force wanted to upgrade its existing fleet to the modernised MiG-29SMT configuration, but financial difficulties have limited deliveries. The MiG-29 has also been a popular export aircraft; more than 30 nations either operate or have operated the aircraft to date, India being one of the largest export operators of the type. As of 2013, the MiG-29 is in production by Mikoyan, a subsidiary of United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) since 2006.

Role

 

Origin

 

Manufacturer

 

First flight

 

Introduction

 

Status

 

Primary users

 

 

 

 

 

Number built

 

Unit cost

 

 

Variants

 

Air superiority fighter, multirole fighter

 

Soviet Union, Russia

 

Mikoyan

 

6 October 1977

 

July 1982

 

In service

 

Russian Air Force

Indian Air Force

Ukrainian Air Force

Yugoslavia Air Force

German Air Force (Former Eastern Germany)

 

1,600

 

US$11 million (MiG-29B, 1984, 1999)

US$29 million (average cost, 2009)

 

Mikoyan MiG-29M

Mikoyan MiG-29K

Mikoyan MiG-35