Russia orders Mi-28UB operational trainer helos

IHS Janes

25 April 2016

The Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS) has ordered 24 dual-control Mil Mi-28 ‘Havoc’ attack helicopters to be delivered by the end of 2018, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on 24 April.

The contract for the 24 Mi-28UB ‘Havoc-B’ operational trainer aircraft forms part of a wider deal signed between the Russian Ministry of Defence and Russian Helicopters that also includes two Mi-26 ‘Halo’ heavy-lift platforms. According to the announcement, these 24 Mi-28UBs represent the first production batch, though final numbers were not disclosed.

Having made its maiden flight in August 2013, the Mi-28UB is essentially identical to the frontline Mi-28N/NE (Night Stalker/Night Hunter) helicopter, but with dual-controls to enable the aircraft to be flown from either the front or rear cockpit. The rear cockpit canopy has also been expanded to improve visibility for an instructor or trainee pilot flying or overseeing training from the rear seat. Although billed as a trainer platform for the Mi-28N/NE, the Mi-28UB retains a combat capability.

Although final numbers have not been disclosed, it has been previously reported that the VKS is planning to procure 60 Mi-28UBs through to 2020. Once operational, the Mi-28UB will augment the Mi-28N/NE, Kamov Ka-52 ‘Hokum-B’, and Mi-35 ‘Hind’, as the VKS continues to withdraw its Soviet-era Mi-24 ‘Hind’ helicopters from service.

The VKS has not said if it will upgrade its more than 100 existing Mi-28N helicopters to the dual-control Mi-28UB standard or retain them in their original configuration. According to Russian defence sources, Algeria and Iraq have ordered 42 and 19 dual-controlled Mi-28NEs respectively (the export version of the Mi-28UB).

Separately, Russian Helicopters is developing an upgraded variant of the Mi-28N, designated Mi-28NM (‘M’ stands for modernizirovanny [modernised]). It is said to be based on the Mi-28UB, and is equipped with enhanced jamming systems, new guided weapons, a new avionics suite, and probably provision for upgraded night vision goggles.


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See details of Mi-28:HERE

Mil Mi 26 Mi-26T Heavy Transport Helicopter

The Mil Mi-26 (NATO reporting name: Halo) is a Russian heavy transport helicopter designed by the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant which is in service with several different civilian and military operators. It is the largest and most powerful helicopter to have gone into series production. The Mi-26 heavy transport helicopter is designed to airlift troops and material, and transport cargoes inside or outside the fuselage. The transport, troop-carrying, medevac, flight-refuelling are available. 

The Mi-26 was designed as a heavy-lift helicopter for military and civil use, and was to replace earlier Mi-6 and Mi-12 heavy lift helicopters, with twice the cabin space and payload of the Mi-6, then the world’s largest and fastest production helicopter. The primary purpose was to move military equipment like 13 metric ton (29,000 lb) amphibious armored personnel carriers, and mobile ballistic missiles, to remote locations after delivery by military transport planes such as the Antonov An-22 or Ilyushin Il-76. 

The first Mi-26 flew on 14 December 1977 and the first production aircraft was rolled out on 4 October 1980. Development was completed in 1983, and the Mi-26 was in Soviet military and commercial service by 1985. 

The Mi-26 “HALO” is currently in use in several air fleets: Russia (+10), Algeria (6 on order), Belarus (7), Cambodia (?), Democratic Republic of the Congo (?), Equatorial Guinea (?), India (4), Kazakhstan (10-12), Mexico (1), North Korea (?), Peru (3), Ukraine (?), Venezuela (3).

Mi-26T2: Upgrade under development, will enter in production in 2015. Equipped with modern BREO-26 on-board avionics, NPK90-2 flight and navigation system, five LCD displays. Avionics of the Mi-26T2 integrate an around-the-clock gyrostabilized optoelectronic system, backup device system, modern communications system and on-board control system. Night vision goggles are also available as an additional option.

Model comparing the size of the Mi-26 vs Ch-47


The multipurpose heavy lift helicopter Mi-26 “Halo” is a third generation helicopter continuing the line of development of Russia’s heavy lift helicopters, designed for transportation of self-propelled and non self-propelled vehicles and large-size cargo in the cabin, and using external load with the total weight of up to 20 tons. Mi-26 is characterized by high operating efficiency and has no analogues in the world as regards its load-lifting capacity.The helicopter is produced using a single-rotor scheme with a tail rotor.

The Mi-26 is the first helicopter with an eight-blade main rotor, which is mounted above the fuselage midsection on a hump. Two turboshaft engines are mounted on top of the cabin with round air intakes above and behind the cockpit and exhaust ports at the sides of the engines. The long, bus-like body with fixed tricycle landing gear tapers to the nose and rear, with an upswept rear section and rounded nose and stepped-up cockpit. The tail is swept-back with a slightly tapered fin with large rotor on right side. The flats are forward-tapered and low-mounted on leading edge of the fin. 

The length of the landing gear struts can be hydraulically adjusted to facilitate loading through the rear doors. The tailskid is retractable to allow unrestricted approach to the rear clamshell doors and loading ramp. The cargo compartment has two electric winches (each with 2,500 kg capacity) on overhead rails can move loads along the length of the cabin. The cabin floor has rollers and tie-down rings throughout. 


The Mi-26 is powered by two Lotarev D-136 turboshaft engines. Each engine can produce 8,380kW of power. The synchronisation of outputs between the two engines maintains a constant rotor rpm. The Mi-26 is capable of single-engine flight in the event of loss of power by one engine (depending on aircraft mission weight) because of an engine load sharing system. If one engine fails, the other engines output is automatically increased to allow continued flight. Each engine bay is manufactured with titanium to safeguard against fire. The maximum internal fuel capacity of each tank is 12,000l. The Mi-26 features VR-26 fan-cooled main transmission, rated at 14,914kW, with air intake above rear of engine cowlings.

D-136 turboshaft engines
Heavy transport helicopter
Country user
Algeria, Belarus, Cambodia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, India, Kazakhstan, Mexico, North Korea, Peru, Russia, Ukraine, Venezuela
Country Producer
5 (2 pilots, 1 navigator, 1 flight engineer, 1 flight technician)
2 × Lotarev D-136 turboshafts
295 km/h
1,920 kma
28,200 kg (max takeoff wieght: 56,000 kg)
Groza 7A813, PKV-26-1, Doppler radar, map display, HSI, automatic hover system, GPS (optional)
Length: 40 m, Width (rotor): 32.4 m, Height: 8.145 m



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