Tag Archives: Russia

U.S. is about to deploy F-22 Raptor stealth jets to Europe in a show of force against Russia

F-22 Raptors to be deployed to Europe “very soon.”

The Air Force is about to deploy the F-22 Raptor 5th generation multi-role stealth fighter to the European theater, as a potential deterrent to Russian aggression, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James said on Aug. 24.

The Raptor deployment had already been announced in June, when Air Force Secretary, at Le Bourget airshow in Paris, said that Russia was the “biggest threat” her mind, but it now appears to be few days away.

So far the U.S. has responded to the proxy war in Ukraine and to the spike in Russia Air Force activity in the Baltic region with two 6-month TSPs (Theater Security Packages), made up of F-15s and A-10s, and stepping up its presence at regional exercises with NATO allies and partners, attended also by B-52 strategic bombers and A-10 attack planes.

Raptors have often taken part in rotational deployments in the Asia-Pacific region since 2009, but have never been deployed to Europe. It would be interesting to know which airbases are being considered for such deployment that should include 12 aircraft and 200-300 support personnel even though the aircraft will probably not be stationed at a single base but will perform short rotations to a few airports in eastern Europe as already done by the F-15s and A-10s of the previous TSPs (that have visited Germany, UK, Poland, Estonia, Slovakia, Bulgaria, etc.).

Although it was born U.S.’s premier air superiority fighter the F-22 has become a multirole aircraft that has had its baptism of fire in the air-to-surface role during the air war against ISIS: along with air-to-air missiles, the Raptor can also drop Precision Guided Munitions: two 1,000-lb GBU-32 JDAMs (Joint Direct Attack Munitions) or 8 GBU-39 small diameter bombs.

However, according to the U.S. Air Force, during the air campaign against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, the once troubled stealth plane has emerged as F-22 is pivotal to ensure the safety of the other aircraft involved in the air campaign: the Raptors act as “electronic warfare enabled sensor-rich multi-role aircraft” that provide key kinetic situational awareness to other aircraft: they escort strike packages into and out of the target area while gathering details about the enemy systems and spreading intelligence to other “networked” assets supporting the mission to improve the overall situational awareness.

Image credit: U.S. Air Force

 

Watch Russia’s 5th Gen. stealth fighter perform stunning aerobatics, including “Cobra” and flat spin

The Russian Sukhoi T-50 is going to be a tough adversary for both the F-22 and F-35.

A video published by the TV channel Zvezda shows a Sukhoi PAK FA prototype performing some stunning aerobatics that prove the excellent maneuverability of Russia’s next generation radar-evading fighter jet.

According to the Russians, in terms of maneuvering capabilities, the new aircraft will have no rivals both among its Russian-made predecessors and among the foreign combat planes.

The aircraft is a stealth equipped with a front, side and rear AESA radar, as well as L Band radars. It features TVC (Thrust Vectoring Control), a top speed exceeding Mach 2 and a supermaneuverability that makes the T-50 able to perform, among the others, even the famous Cobra maneuver.

It should carry a wide variety of weapons including air-to-air, air-to-surface and anti-ship missiles.

Although future air-to-air scenarios will probably not involve WVR (Within Visual Range) engagements, where supermaneuverability would give it an edge over most if not all its competitors, and provided it will solve all its problems and will be produced in significant numbers, the T-50 will become a tough adversary for the F-22 and F-35.

 

Dramatic footage shows Russian Mi-28N gunship crashing at airshow

A Mi-28N Havoc gunship has crashed in Russia during an airshow.

A Russian Mi-28N Night Hunter helicopter crashed during Aviamix airshow at Ryazan airbase, southeast of Moscow, Russia.

The gunship was taking part in an aerial display with other 3 (or 5 according to some sources) Mi-28s when it started to spin and steeply fall towards the ground until it crashed and caught fire. According to the first reports, one of the crew members has died, while the other one was severely injured.

 

This Is What It’s Like to Fly to the Edge of Space in a MiG-29 Fulcrum

GoPro cameras bring you aboard a Mig-29 Fulcrum during a flight to the Edge of Space.

Ever wondered what flying one of the most famous Russian warplanes at supersonic speed and so high (between 17 and 22 km) that you can clearly see the curvature of Earth looks like?

The video below will give you a hint.

It was produced by MigFlug, a company that offers fighter jet flying experiences in wide variety of aircraft in Russia, Europe and North America, during a Edge of Space mission with their MiG-29 Fulcrum.

Edge of Space Flight I

Interestingly, the video was shot by a famous aviation video producer, Artur Sarkysian, who attached a GoPro cameras to the two-seater Mig-29UB’s outer surfaces in such a way they could withstand speed up to 2450 km/h and a load factor of 9g!

Edge of Space Flight II

From several different points of view you can watch one of the most famous Soviet-era jet (still serving in Russia, Ukraine, North Korea, Poland, Syria and Iran, among the others) fly at supersonic speed and high altitude, maneuver, perform aerobatics and land.

Edge of Space Flight V

The video was produced over a time of 6 months. But the results are stunning.

Edge of Space

Here below you can watch the whole video. Enjoy!

 

Salva

U.S. A-10 Thunderbolt attack planes have arrived in Poland

Four U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt aircraft have arrived at Polish Powidz AB.

Last month, when the U.S. deployed 12 A-10s to Germany as part of the first TSP (Theater Security Package) we wrote that the aircraft might be temporarily stationed in Poland. Apparently, our assumptions turned out to be founded: on Mar. 24, four Thunderbolts have arrived at the 33rd Powidz Transport Air Base, near Gniezno, in the Greater Poland District.

The purpose of the visit is yet unknown. Most probably the Thunderbolts will be involved in the exercises related to Operation Atlantic Resolve, which is a NATO programme aimed at providing reassurance for the Mid-Eastern European countries (against the Russian threat).

The arrival of the attack aircraft was preceded by arrival of two USAF C-130 Hercules transports, one from the 86th Airlift Wing stationed at Ramstein AB and another one from the 302nd Airlift Wing from Colorado Springs, both part of the rotational USAF Aviation Detachment.

We do not have any information related to length or plan of the unexpected visit. Notably, one of the Warthogs was piloted by a female pilot.

Image Credit: 3rd Transport Aviation Wing, cpt. Włodzimierz Baran, Polish Air Force. More photos here.