BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:20 P.M.) – First introduced into service in the early 1980s, the Mikoyan MiG-31 interceptor aircraft has proven to be one of the most versatile jets in the Soviet and Russian air forces, with recent upgrades enabling the planes to carry Russia’s new Kinzhal hypersonic missile.

The Russian Defence Ministry has released footage of MiG-31 fighters practicing combat in the stratosphere during drills by Pacific Fleet naval aviation in the Far East region of Kamchatka.

The video shows the planes roaring into the sky from their airfield, climbing to an altitude of about 20,000 meters, where they practice intercepting an enemy intruder before coming back down to land.

To complicate the exercise, pilots were tasked with searching out the conditional ‘enemy’ without the help of ground-based air defences.

Despite its introduction into service nearly 40 years ago, the MiG-31 remains one of the fastest series of military aircraft in the world. The first such jet was designed by the Mikoyan design bureau in the 1970s to chase down high-speed US spy planes such as the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird.

Capable of accelerating to breakneck speeds of up to 2,500 km per hour (Mach 2.35), the aircraft is classified as a fourth-generation all-weather supersonic interceptor, and has the NATO reporting name ‘Foxhound’.

The MiG-31 has repeatedly made it into the news in recent weeks amid a major uptick in NATO reconnaissance and training operations near Russia’s borders, with the jets scrambled to intercept foreign planes and drones over the Barents Sea in the northwest and the Seas of Japan and Chukotsk in the Far East.

ALSO READ  Azerbaijan announces capture of ancient bridge in Karabakh

Russia expects to continue operating the MiG-31 platform until at least 2030, and has about 250 MiG-31s of various kinds in its inventory, including 10 modified to carry the Kinzhal hypersonic missile.


Source: Sputnik

Share this article:
  • 1

Notice: All comments represent the view of the commenter and not necessarily the views of AMN.

All comments that are not spam or wholly inappropriate are approved, we do not sort out opinions or points of view that are different from ours.

This is a Civilized Place for Public Discussion

Please treat this discussion with the same respect you would a public park. We, too, are a shared community resource — a place to share skills, knowledge and interests through ongoing conversation.

These are not hard and fast rules, merely guidelines to aid the human judgment of our community and keep this a clean and well-lighted place for civilized public discourse.

Improve the Discussion

Help us make this a great place for discussion by always working to improve the discussion in some way, however small. If you are not sure your post adds to the conversation, think over what you want to say and try again later.

The topics discussed here matter to us, and we want you to act as if they matter to you, too. Be respectful of the topics and the people discussing them, even if you disagree with some of what is being said.

Be Agreeable, Even When You Disagree

You may wish to respond to something by disagreeing with it. That’s fine. But remember to criticize ideas, not people. Please avoid:

  • Name-calling
  • Ad hominem attacks
  • Responding to a post’s tone instead of its actual content
  • Knee-jerk contradiction

Instead, provide reasoned counter-arguments that improve the conversation.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments