Saturday, June 12, 2021

Russian MiG-31 Foxhound interceptors deploy near Alaska

Russian Pacific Fleet’s press office says that Russia has deployed MiG-31 Foxhound long-range interceptor to their base in Anadyr, in the Chukotka region opposite the U.S. Alaska state.

“To enhance the aviation component in the Arctic zone, the crews of the MiG-31BM high-altitude fighter-interceptors of the Pacific Fleet’s naval aviation took up air defense combat duty at the Anadyr airfield. Currently, the aviation unit is working out issues of interaction with ground-based air defense systems when performing missions as intended.” the press service reported.

Chukotka’s proximity to Alaska makes it a highly sensitive region. It is Russia’s second-least populated region, with about 50,500 inhabitants, and its infrastructure is poor. Many rural inhabitants still rely on traditional hunting and reindeer-herding.

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The MiG-31Foxhound is a two-seat all-weather supersonic long-range interceptor. It was the first Soviet combat plane of the fourth generation as developed in the 1970s.

The latest version of the interceptor, called the MiG-31BM, is designated to intercept air targets at long ranges inaccessible for strikes by standard fighter jets. The fighters of this type are capable of providing network-centric combat control while operating with other aircraft. The MiG-31BM is furnished with a phased array radar. The fighters of this type can employ R-33 long-range air-to-air missiles and R-73 short-range air-launched weapons.

The MiG-31BM is 21.62 meters long and has a maximum takeoff weight of 46.2 tonnes. The fighter jet can develop a maximum speed of 3,000 km/h at a high altitude and has a service ceiling of 20,600 meters. The fighter jet furnished with four R-33 missiles and two suspended fuel tanks has an operating range of 3,000 km. The MiG-31BM is outfitted with a mid-air refueling system and two D-30F6 engines with a take-off thrust of 15,500 kgf each.

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About this Author

Daisuke Sato
Daisuke Sato is defense reporter, covering the Asia-Pacific defense industrial base, defense markets and all related issues.

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