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Indian MiG-29 upgrade
MiG-29UPG_KBU3301_2936

The first Indian Air Force (IAF) upgraded MiG-29UPG fighter made its maiden flight on 4 February 2011 in Zhukovsky. The upgrade is being handled by the MiG corporation under the contract awarded in March 2008. The contract stipulates integrated upgrade of the whole MiG-29 fleet in service with IAF. Overall, 62 aircraft will be upgraded, including several two-seat combat trainers. They will be given the latest avionics and advanced weapons. In addition, airframe and powerplant improvements will extend their service life considerably, with the planes transitioning to on-condition maintenance.

The IAF MiG-29 upgrade concept complies with the one adopted by the Russian Air Force to its MiG-29SMTs that have been in service since 2009 and well-mastered by Russian military pilots. At the same time, the composition of the avionics and weapon suites of the upgraded IAF MiG-29s will have a high degree of commonality with the carrierborne MiG-29K/KUB fighters that have entered service with Indian Navy on 19 February 2010. Foreign-made avionics was integrated with the avionics suite of the MiG-29UPG at the customer’s request (the so-called ‘international avionics suite’). The manufacturer has already got such an experience that has proven itself under Russo-Indian contracts for upgrade of the MiG-21UPG Bison fighters as well as development and manufacture of the Su-30MKI and MiG-29K/KUB fighters.

The fire control system of the MiG-29UPG is wrapped around the advanced slotted-array Zhuk-M2E radar from Phazotron-NIIR Corp. and OLS-UEM IRST sensor with the laser, thermal-imaging and television capabilities from NIIPP (similar radar and IRST are used in the MiG-29K/KUB). The cockpit management system is based on full-colour multifunction liquid-crystal displays. The international segment of the avionics suite comprises a Thales helmet-mounted target designator, a Sagem inertial/satellite navigation system, an Indian EW system and an Israeli ECM station, with the same system installed in the MiG-29K/KUB.

The basic weapons suite of the MiG-29UPG is the same as that of the MiG-29SMT and MiG-29K/KUB. Unlike the weapons suite of the standard MiG-29, it has RVV-AE air-to-air active radar homing missiles and air-to-surface precision-guided munitions, such as Kh-29T general-purpose TV-homing missiles, Kh-31A antiship active radar-homing missiles, Kh-31P antiradiation missiles, KAB-500Kr TV-homing smart bombs, etc.

The first six IAF MiG-29s are completing their upgrade and tests in Russia and will be back with IAF in the near future. The rest 56 aircraft will be upgraded on the premises of the IAF 11th Repair Base with the use of equipment kits supplied by Russia.

 

MiG-29UPG_IMG_5601
MiG-29UPG_IMG_5607
MiG-29UPG_IMG_5593

 

 

 

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