The sea trial of INS Vikramaditya
(formerly the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov), which is being modernised in Severodvinsk, is scheduled to start in late May and will include MiG-29K naval fighter landing tests and checks of the aircraft systems
. During the first three weeks, specialists will focus primarily on running trials, while the aircraft systems will be tested in June and July.
It is planned to check all of INS Vikramaditya’s aircraft systems, which will include landing tests of the MiG-29K fighters and Ka-31 and Ka-27 naval helicopters on the flight deck.
In April, aviation fuel systems will be washed, and aircraft fuel will be delivered to the ship. Right now, radar stations and navigation systems are being set up, non-slip coating is being applied to the deck, and the bow and stern aircraft lifts are being tested.
Representatives of Russian Aircraft Corporation (RAC) MiG have been invited to observe test flights on the air carrier.
Russia’s Sevmash shipbuilding company is getting ready to start INS Vikramaditya sea trials in the White Sea and Barents Sea on 25 May.
Russia and India signed the contract for the modernisation of the Admiral Gorshkov heavy aircraft carrier in 2004. The contracted cost of repair and modernisation is $974 million, and India was supposed to pay another $530 million for 16 MiG-29K naval fighters and Ka-31 and Ka-27 naval anti-submarine helicopters. In early 2012, RAC MiG reported that it had fulfilled its contractual obligations for the delivery of 16 MiG-29K/KUB fighters and was beginning to make aircraft under a new option contract. The MiG-29K/KUB fighters supplied to India made part of the new 303rd squadron, which was christened the “Black Panthers”.
The original contract for supplies of these carrier-based fighters was signed as part of the package Admiral Gorshkov deal in 2004, which cost a total of $1.5 billion. In March 2010, an option contract was signed for India to acquire 29 Russian-made MiG-29K/KUB fighters. According to unofficial reports, the contract was worth $1.2 billion. The MiG-29K (single-seater) and MiG-29KUB (two-seater) aircraft are multirole 4++ generation fighters designed to provide air defense for larger naval units, gain supremacy in the air, engage surface and land targets with guided precision weapons day or night in all weather conditions. The first trial flight of the test MiG-29KUB fighter took place in January 2007, and the production fighter made its maiden flight in March 2008.
MiG-29K/KUB fighters have improved performance and advanced reliability of its units and systems. Compared with earlier models, the MiG-29K/KUB service life has doubled, and the airborne hour cost has been cut almost 60%. The MiG-29K/KUB is equipped with the Zhuk-ME radar system, capable of tracking up to 10 airborne targets and engaging four at once, as well as a modern multichannel optical location station and a target designating system for the passive homing heads of antiradar missiles. The fighter is armed with air-to-air and air-to-ground guided missiles; fire-and-forget air bombs, unguided rockets, air bombs and a 30mm cannon. New types of air-launched weapons may be included in the range of armaments upon the customer’s request.
INS Vikramaditya air wing to be tested in June | Russia & India Report
Soon there will be pictures of these bad boys landing on our carrier.