MAKS 2021: Russia gets prior request for MiG-29K/KUB fighters from India

Russia has received a request from India for the delivery of Mikoyan MiG-29K/KUB (NATO reporting name: Fulcrum-D) onboard fighters, Director of Russia’s Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation Dmitry Shugayev told TASS at the MAKS 2021 aerospace show.

Russia gets prior request for MiG 29K KUB fighters from India

MiG-29K pictured in 2017 (Picture source: Wikipedia/Dmitriy Pichugin)

According to Dmitry Shugayev, Russia is waiting for a tender for the upgrade of MiG-29K/KUB fighter jets: "Russia has also started consultations with India on the upgrade of MiG-29K/KUB planes," Shugayev said.

The Mikoyan MiG-29K (NATO reporting name: Fulcrum-D) is an all-weather carrier-based multirole fighter aircraft developed by the Mikoyan Design Bureau. The MiG-29K was developed in the late 1980s from the MiG-29M. Mikoyan describes it as a 4+ generation aircraft.

Production standard MiG-29Ks differ from prototypes in features such as a multi-function radar and several new cockpit displays; the adoption of HOTAS (hands-on-throttle-and-stick) controls; the integration of RVV-AE (also known as R-77) air-to-air missiles, along with missiles for anti-ship and anti-radar operations; and several ground/strike precision-guided weapons.

The MiG-29K was not ordered into production and only two prototypes were originally built because the Russian Navy preferred the Su-27K (later re-designated Su-33) in the early 1990s. Mikoyan did not stop its work on the MiG-29K aircraft despite the lack of financing since 1992. The programme got a boost in the late 1990s to meet an Indian requirement for a ship-borne fighter following the purchase of a former Soviet aircraft carrier, and the MiG-29K was first received by the Indian Naval Air Arm in 2009. The Russian Navy, with their Su-33s nearing the end of their service lives by 2010, has also ordered the MiG-29K as a replacement.

The MiG-29K/KUB ship-based multipurpose fighter jets are designed to defend ship groups from air attacks, gain air supremacy, and deliver strikes against ground and sea targets using precision-guided weapons in any weather conditions. The MiG-29K/KUB fighter jet can reach more than 2,000 km/h (1,243 mph) and fly to a distance of 1,500 km (932 mi). MiG-29K/KUB fighters are the main shipborne aircraft of the Indian Navy.