MiG with hook
The campaign of the only Russian aircraft carrier in the Eastern Mediterranean should be justified at least militarily - I don’t want to talk about the financial side of the issue.
A day later, in an interview with at least five media, the head of the marine aviation The Navy, Major General Igor Kozhin, claimed that the aircraft carrier would go on a long voyage with a full set of weapons, which logically implies the presence of the entire wing on board. Indeed, it was previously reported that the “Admiral Kuznetsov” should take the 279th and 100th separate naval fighter aviation regiments (OKIAP) of the Northern naval aviation fleet. However, in what composition? Here, it seems, there is a certain intrigue.
According to the stated technical characteristics, the aircraft carrier is capable of carrying 26 airplanes and 16 helicopters.
School for aces
Without claiming to absolute truth, "MIC" tried to figure out how much the real corresponds to the desired. The lack of attention of officials to the Crimean "aircraft carrier" - the ground test-training complex NITKA, which returned to the bosom of Russia together with the peninsula, was spoken about in May ("Aircraft carrier" aground "). Then it was noted that the newly formed 100-th OKIAP, which received the latest MiG-29KR / KUBR fighters, risks staying on the ground for a long time, since the pilots do not have the proper training that can and should be organized in Crimea. In any case, the General Staff insisted on just such a variant of the training of deck aviation pilots. According to expert estimates, “if NITKA in Saki was not deprived of the attention of officials, the preparation of combatant pilots on the MiG-29 could have been started a year and a half ago.”
Recall: April 15 informed source told Interfax-AVN that the technical readiness of the THREAD will be restored by the end of the year. Looking ahead, we note that due to the dedication of the employees of the complex, this was done in just two weeks.
“The General Headquarters of the Armed Forces of Russia decided to continue the construction of the facilities of the NITKA complex in the city of Yeisk (Krasnodar Territory). At the same time, in order to prevent disruptions in the training of pilots of naval aviation, it was decided to restore the technical readiness of the Black Sea Fleet's NITKA complex until the end of 2016, ”the agency’s source then specified. It was also reported that the long-range cruise of the Admiral Kuznetsov TAKR, scheduled for autumn, could be launched with a truncated wing. This was due to the fact that the pilots of the recently formed 100-th OKIAP started shortly before the flights from the airfield (not from the NITKA complex) of the Combat Operational Center and retraining of the aircrew of the Navy in Eisk on the MiG-29KR and MiG-29KUBR.
At the time of publication of this article, the main part of the aircraft and pilots of the 100 OKIAP was reportedly located in Yeisk, but according to official information this complex will be technically ready for training flights at best not earlier than the end of the year. And maybe later, since the aerofinists have not yet been tested.
The decision of some officials to rely on the use of its thread NITKA is presumably due to the fact that the artillery refineries in Saki have completed the exploitation resource by time, although it has been worked out by less than five percent for the landing cycles. However, the volitional decision, not a reasonable assessment of the real state of the complex, extended the resource by just 30 landings.
Again, it is worth recalling that, due to the reluctance to engage in the Crimean NITKA, deck aircraft aircraft flew over the ground-based “aircraft carrier” in Saki in 2014 and 2015 years without the use of aerofinishers — without hooking on the cable. Also at the beginning of the year, experts expressed concern that by the departure of Admiral Kuznetsov, the pilots of the 100 OKIAP, who had never planted their vehicles on either an aircraft carrier or a NITKA complex, would not have time to go through all the necessary preparatory procedures.
26 April it became known that several 279-th OKIAP aircraft landed in the Crimea, where the pilots had to undergo a training cycle on the THREAD. As it turned out, it was about four Su-33 and three Su-25UTG, in fact, two links. They immediately began to sit on the deck of the "aircraft carrier" using arresting gear.
15 June, the aircraft carrier left 35-y ship repair yard, where the first stage of service maintenance and restoration of technical readiness (CO and VTG) passed. He immediately went to the outer raid to provide training for pilots of deck aviation. By that time, after the passage of the necessary practice in May in the Crimea, the 279 th OKIAP fighters had flown on the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier. Already then it was assumed that in August the TAKR would return to the 35 th SRH to carry out the work of the second stage of the CO and VHG.
The main positive result of the work of 279 of the OKIAP in the Crimea was the fact that for the first time in the last six years a group of young pilots was trained to fly from an aircraft carrier. And this is a great achievement and merit NITKA in Saki. There are fewer pilots in Russia today than astronauts. Their training is becoming more urgent as the majority of those flying from the deck approach the 50 years.
In the meantime, at least four MiG-29KR fighters remained in Saki, and not all the combat vehicles of the 100 OKIAP were test ones owned by the MiG corporation. They flew north in mid-July, and the Crimean NITKA became empty again. According to official data, there were trained to fly on the MiG-29KR about 10 pilots, of which only a few combatants.
August 8th truly happened historical event: the first MiG-29KR, piloted by the commander of the 100th OKIAP, landed on the deck of an aircraft carrier.
The "MIC" no official data on how many aircraft 100-th OKIAP flew north. There is no information about how many regiment pilots are prepared to fly from the deck. According to unofficial information, there are only three of them. According to experts, “if they hadn’t forgotten about the Crimean NITKA after the return of the peninsula to Russia, it would have been possible to prepare the 100-th OKAAP in full force”. Moreover, they harshly criticized officials (this does not concern the new commander-in-chief of the Navy, who, as they say, was actively involved in the struggle for the Crimean NITKA), they say, “quite possibly, they did not believe that Crimea returned to the bosom of Russia forever. Otherwise, where does such love come from to Eisk and to billions of state funds being sawn there? ”
As for the MiG-29KR, at first the testers of the MiG corporation, not the gunners, began to fly from the aircraft carrier. In mid-August, "Admiral Kuznetsov" returned to the 35-th shipyard. It was supposed to be until October 1, after which a two-week preparation for the long-range march was expected, in which the TAKR would be accompanied by a large anti-submarine ship (BOD), a rescue tug and one or two tankers, as well as a multi-purpose submarine. This may include, in particular, the BOD Severomorsk, which on July 8 left the dry dock of the 35 SRH, and the large sea tanker Sergey Osipov.
The experts explained that the main problem of the training of pilots of deck aviation is that the one who should do it ex officio does not want or cannot report to the team: the order of the President of the Russian Federation from 27 July 2008 to create the second stage of the NITKA complex in Yeisk is outdated and after return of the Crimea does not match the reality.
The advantages of the Crimean complex are obvious - in just two weeks with a minimum of funds and specialists from one of the ship repair enterprises of Sevastopol, NITKA, for the first time after a long break without failure, provided training for the deserts. And how much could be done in two and a half years after the return of the Crimea? Why this precious time was lost - no one wants to understand. Especially since, according to the available data, specific decisions were made and contracts were concluded after April 2014.
In this regard, many experts have no doubt that in the conditions of existing economic realities, it is necessary to preserve long-term construction in Yeisk, save billions on this (the second stage will cost 18 billion rubles) and send only a few million to modernize the complex in Saki, the work on which, among other things, will allow you to download orders of the enterprises of the Crimea and Sevastopol.
The same thing that was shown not so long ago by Sergei Shoigu in Yeisk with the passage of the MiG-29KR without touching the deck of the “aircraft carrier” is nothing more than a picture of the Potemkin village, arranged by those who live according to the principle of “sawing, sawing and sawing again”. It is clear that not taiga in Magadan.
Sources familiar with the situation note that at the same time, the Minister of Defense was called the readiness period of the complex in Yeisk - the end of this year. But time is ticking, and there they haven’t even begun testing, which will last more than a month - this is in case they go without failures. In addition, one should understand the main difference between the old NITKA and its fellow Yeisk: the first one is made of metal structures, and not of concrete, like the second. The latter circumstance does not allow simulating the magnetic field of a real ship with all the ensuing consequences. For example, in Eisk it will be impossible to test an electromagnetic catapult for a promising aircraft carrier. In addition, the complex under construction will also need a powerful transmission line, which must be extended from the Rostov nuclear power plant. And this time and expenses.
NITKA in Saki has only one defender - his veteran Alexander Sannikov, “MIC” told about him. But his letters to the highest instances are redirected again and again to the same officials, who, it seems, for a number of reasons known only to them, put a cross on the Crimean complex.
The opinion of the majority of experts polled by the MIC is the same: the decision on the future of NITKA in Saki should be taken not by the naval aviation command, but by the Military Industrial Commission.
In the meantime, at the complex in Saki, deafening silence ...
Ground test-training complex (aviation) or NITKA in Saki was developed specifically for testing the take-off and landing on the deck of an aircraft carrier. It includes a runway unit (deck), a booster device (analogous to a catapult), steam power plants, an aero-finisher, a springboard, delay devices, an emergency network. All this is mounted in the ship's metal sections, copying the deck of the aircraft carrier. In addition, there are a command and control center (analogous to the ship's KDP), course and glide-beacon beacons, and an optical system that ensures the accuracy of the landing. Landing block is a copy of the deck of the ship, which can swing, simulating the excitement of the sea. The aircraft sits down at a speed of 250 kilometers per hour, firing a landing hook that engages with one of the four transverse cables of the aero-finisher raised above the unit at 30 centimeters. Unwinding from the braking drums, the cable quenches the speed, and the plane stops by running 90 – 100 meters.
Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest news and the most important events of the day.