These awesome photos from KADEX 2016 show Kazakhstan Air Force combat aircraft as you’ve never seen them before

Su-30SMs, Su-27M-2s, Yak-130, Pterodactyl-1 and much more exotic stuff you don’t happen to see too often.

Held between Jun. 2 and 5, 2016, the Kazakhstan Defence Expo (KADEX 2016) provided an interesting opportunity to have a close look at some rather rare Kazakhstan Air Force “hardware.”

The IV International Exhibition of Weapons Systems and Military Equipment brought to Astana some really interesting combat aircraft.

Kazakhstan Air Force were represented at KADEX 2016 by their Sukhoi Display Team the “Zhetysu” (Severn Rivers) from the 604 Air Base, Aktobe. They brought with them five Su-27M-2, numbered 07, 11, 14, 16, 17 yellow along with a single Su-27UBM-2 numbered 52 yellow.




Su-27M-2 # 07 did not fly at all during the show, and was probably the spare machine.

The Su-27UBM-2 was always the lead aircraft for the formation demonstration, and was always flown by Col. Timur Omarov, the Team Leader.

Solo demonstrations were flown by the two Su-30SM #02 and #03 red on a daily basis.






EC-145 helicopters took part in the flying display as well along with some Russian aircraft and helicopters: the Yak-130, the Mi-8MSB and the Mi-17V-5.

Other interesting participants in static display were the Chengdu Pterodactyl-1 UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle), the Kazakhstan Government Tu-134A and An-74, the MCHS Kazaviaspas (Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Republic of Kazakhstan) EC-145, Ka-32, Mi-26T and Mi-171E.





Kadex_33 Kadex_34 Kadex_35 Kadex_36 Kadex_37 Kadex_38 Kadex_39  Kadex_42 Kadex_43 Kadex_44 Kadex_45 Kadex_46 Kadex_47 Kadex_49 Kadex_50

The Aviationist’s Tony Lovelock had the opportunity to visit Kadex 2016 and take the photographs you can find in this post.

Sincere thanks for the hospitality and attention of the Officers and Staff from the Ministry of Defence of ther Republic of Kazakstan.

Image credit: The Aviationist/Tony Lovelock

About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


    • Unimpressive attempt at putting down Russian hardware. I suggest using facts to push your belief that these machines are inadequate.

      • Fact is F-22 and F-35 will kill any of these Russian aircraft. They’ll never know where the missile came from. The fighters we see above are old technology and aren’t capable of taking on 5th gen.

        • Just because the shape is from the late 1980’s doesn’t mean that these birds don’t have modern software, avionics, radars and all the other junk needed to fight a modern war. I am not saying that these birds do, but Sukhoi has versions of this jet that come pretty well equipped, just ask India. Sure F-22/F-35 have a leg up in the sensor/avionics/weapons department, but don’t count out the Russian birds just because they are not 5th gen, would you count out the F-16C/J or F-15C?

          • No I wouldn’t count them out, but I would heavily handicap them. For our pilots, that confidence at takeoff is worth more than you could ever measure.

        • What the other replier said. 4++ gen fighters should not be underestimated. These fighters are a match for most of the USAF. So far, only two types have an established upper hand, you named them.

        • Meanwhile US are still operating several hundreds of F-16s, 18s and 15s designed in the seventies…nice troll attempt but you have to improve your skills

  1. Wow China didn’t even bother to change the design at all after ripping off our Predator/Reaper drone

    • Yes, because everyone knows an infinite variety of airframe shapes are equally capable of all aspects of controlled flight. So if two different aircraft look similar it can only be because one design team is just copying another.
      I believe your world view is hermetically sealed against reality. Good luck with that.

      • Come on, even if they didn’t steal the shape of the bird, you can bet the flight control software is stolen. Likely more things are stolen as well, like the technology used to manufacture the structures (stolen by the MSS for use in both military and civilian industry), avionics and sensor packages. Keep in mind, the PLA has THOUSANDS of troops dedicated to Cyber War and the MSS is HIGHLY active in the military and corporate industrial espionage game.

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