India preferred "Apache" to "Night Hunter"
The Mi-28H helicopter manufactured by the Russian company Rostvertol lost in the largest tender for the supply of modern helicopters to India to the American attack helicopter Apache AH-64D. According to the Indian military command, “during tests, including with the use of combat arsenal, helicopters proved to be excellent combat units, but the American strike aircraft demonstrated its advantage in our most important characteristics — qualitative additional capabilities and use of the machine in any conditions. This is not the first failure of the Russian industrialists, in the spring of 2011 of the year, a tender was missed for the delivery of multi-purpose MiG-35 fighters to the Indian Air Force.
At present, there are three tenders in India for the acquisition of helicopters for the Air Force, the first is 22 attack helicopters (which Russia has already lost), the second is 12 heavy transport helicopters, the third is 197 light helicopters. The approximate cost of all tenders is 2.5 billion dollars. The Russian side takes an active part in all tenders and so far there is no data on the results of the last two.
Our industrialists are hoping for victory in the tender for the supply of light helicopters, which will make it possible to become one of the major suppliers in India’s new market sector for Russia. At the moment, two major applicants are being tested - the Russian Ka-226T and AS550 Fennec. In case of winning the tender, Russia will replace the entire Indian fleet of light helicopters Alouette 2 / 3, used mainly in the mountainous regions of the country.
The tender for the supply of heavy helicopters also left two main bidders - the Russian Mi-26Т2 and the American CH-47F Chinook.
In the future, the Ministry of Defense of India plans to organize several more tenders for the purchase of rotary-wing equipment and a very interesting tender for Russia for the purchase of multipurpose attack helicopters for the country's Navy. According to rough estimates, in the next ten years, India will adopt about the newest helicopters around 700.
Not surprisingly, the decision of the Russian Defense Ministry to acquire a Mi-35М attack helicopter for army units is a variant of the Mi-24 helicopter for the foreign market.
“The Mi-35М helicopter is very easy to operate, and commissioning is much faster than the new and expensive Mi-28Н helicopter,” stress military experts. No one in the Ministry of Defense denies that new helicopters, such as the Ka-52 and Mi-28H, are today more perfect than their counterparts in service with our army, but when purchasing helicopters for the armed forces, the continuity of the helicopter was primarily considered and technical ease of management.
But all this does not mean that helicopters are not being supplied to the army at all, simply the volume of acquisitions of Ka-52 and Mi-28H series helicopters is currently minimal and amounts to no more than one third of all acquired helicopters by the Russian military in 2011.
History "Night Hunter"
When designing the newest attack helicopter, the developers from the Moscow Aviation Plant Design Bureau tried to take into account the nuances of using the helicopter in the military units of the Ground Forces - take-off and landing in any weather conditions and at any time, fuel interchangeability, standardization of ammunition, compatibility of controls and communications.
To create a helicopter, a unique situation developed, the main plants and companies were idle without orders at that time, and the OKB engineers used the facilities and reserves of the missile and space complex.
Mi-28H - the newest aviation machine, having a complex of avionics and a fifth-generation glider. Installation of new developments was made: transmission, carrier system, improved booking, steering screw, separation of the main control systems. Almost all parts of domestic production.
To increase the survivability of the Mi-28H, the following solutions were implemented:
- separation of engines on different sides and connecting them with the main gearbox to eliminate the possibility of engine damage with one volley or enemy shot;
- implementation of flight on one engine and operation of mechanical systems for some hour without lubrication;
- transition to pneumatic actuators, instead of the hydraulic actuators used on early helicopters;
- full booking of the cockpit, screening and duplication of the most important systems and units;
- duplicated and placed on the sides of the helicopter control systems and nodes of the electrical network.
Tests have shown that the helicopter, in general, withstands 7.62 caliber ammunition, frontal armored glass withstands 12.7 mm caliber ammunition, and the armored side of the helicopter will withstand 20-mm ammunition.
In terms of its flight and combat characteristics, the Mi-28H significantly exceeds the Apache AH-64D, but there are two main factors that reduce all the advantages of the Russian helicopter to none:
- American "Apache AH-64D" has long been in mass production, and, therefore, many design flaws have long been identified and corrected;
- The Russian helicopter does not have combat experience and experience in military conflicts, so it can be said that all the advantages of the helicopter are still a sketch on paper.
The main characteristics of the "Night Hunter":
- length 17 meters;
- height 3.8 meter;
- mass 10 tons;
- two TVZ-117ВМА engines;
- average speed 265 km / h;
- The average range of 500 km;
- high-rise ceiling 5.7 thousands of meters;
- number of pilots 2 person;
- the possibility of transporting 2 person
- gun "2А42" caliber 30 mm, ammunition 300 shots;
- load on 4 suspension up to 1600 kg;
- four ATGM "Sturm";
- two launchers with 130 caliber NUR;
- 16 ATGM "Whirlwind"
Various schemes for installing additional weapons are possible, such as: grenade launchers, machine guns, aerial bombs, air-to-air missiles or mining blocks.
- Dzhereleiko Roman
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