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Russian military choppers set to steal the show at Army-2020

The Russian Helicopters holding company lifts the curtains on an upgraded Mi-35P attack helicopter and an Mi-171SH ‘Storm’ military helicopter.

Ashish Singh

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The Russian Helicopters holding company (part of Rostec State Corporation) has launched serial production of the upgraded Mi-35P attack helicopter at the Rostvertol plant. The first serial model completed its type-specific flight tests, receiving confirmation of the declared performance characteristics and implemented changes in its design. During the tests, taking place on the premises of Rostvertol and the National Helicopter Center Mil&Kamov, Mi-35P performed a number of flights using new weapons and onboard equipment. The tests resulted in finalisation of the helicopter’s design documentation, confirming the model’s readiness for mass production. Upgraded Mi-35P will be demonstrated at the International Military-Technical Forum ARMY-2020.

“Mi-35P was created in cooperation with Rostec’s enterprises and combines the best qualities of the legendary Mi-24 family, hardened in air combat around the world, and the latest Russian achievements in the field of avionics. Last year, we demonstrated the aircraft to a number of potential customers, and today we can confidently say that the helicopter is in demand. We have launched serial production of Mi-35P under the first contract with a foreign customer”, said Andrey Boginsky, director general of Russian Helicopters.

 The upgraded Mi-35P is equipped with an upgraded target sight system with 3rd generation long-wave matrix thermal imaging, a high-resolution colour TV camera and a laser rangefinder. The helicopter also comes with modern 3+ generation night vision goggles and a set of external and internal lighting equipment adapted for use with them. New digital flight control system improves the controllability and stability of the helicopter and provides automation of piloting processes to support the pilot. In addition, a modernised targeting and computing system will increase the accuracy of target engagement.

Mi-35P is armed with a mobile 23 mm twin-barrelled cannon and S-8 rockets, and can be refitted with suspended containers with 23 mm cannons, S-13 rockets, Ataka ATGM with a twinchannel control system, with Vikhr-1 or Vikhr-1M guided missiles. Improved performance in combination with the improved flight and navigation systems allow Mi-35P to fly at any time of the day in simple or moderately difficult weather conditions, both under visual and instrument flying rules, in diverse geographical conditions including over non-landmark terrain. At the same time, the helicopter retains its capability of using both guided and unguided weapons under all conditions. Mi-35P design provides the helicopter with improved combat survivability and reduces maintenance burden.

Upgraded Mi-171Sh at ARMY-2020 for the first time

The Russian Helicopters will present an upgraded Mi-171SH ‘Storm’ military transport helicopter at the International Military-Technical Forum ARMY2020 for the first time. The helicopter, featuring enhanced protection and unique strike capabilities, was manufactured at the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant. The first flying prototype of the helicopter will be demonstrated at the forum. The presentation will also include the IBKV-17VP ‘glass cockpit’ avionics suite and model of the new target sight system.“ Upgraded Mi-171Sh provides superior level of protection for both the crew and transported troops, thanks to titanium and ‘kevlar armor’ protection, and the vehicle›s strike capabilities have been expanded to include guided missile weapons”, noted the director general of the Russian Helicopters, Andrey Boginsky. Mi-171SH is prepared for the most demanding combat and climatic conditions, which is why it is named ‘Storm’ for the foreign customers. The name symbolizes its readiness to fight the elements, and on the other hand speaks of the helicopter›s flexible assault capabilities.

Mi-171Sh ‘Storm’ is equipped with upgraded engines, new rotor system with an improved profile composite main rotor and X-shaped tail rotor, as well as the latest version of the President-S on-board aircraft defence system. The armouring effectively protects the crew and the most parts of the helicopter, as well as the troop compartment. Two sliding doors on the sides and a ramp enable ultra-fast troop deployment. In addition, the helicopter comes with improved armament, including 12.7 mm caliber machine guns and modern guided missile weapons with the OPS-24N-1L target sight system, which allows it to engage against various ground and air targets.

 New high-speed rotor blades for combat helicopters

The Russian Helicopters presented new fully composite rotor blades designed to increase the maximum speed of Mi-28 and Mi-35 combat helicopters at the International Military-Technical Forum ARMY-2020. The blade possesses modern aerodynamic characteristics and elastic composition; it is manufactured using the technology of one-stage compression moulding. It was tested as part of the flying laboratory of a new high-speed helicopter concept.

“During the testing, the flying laboratory based on a Mi-24 helicopter equipped with a set of new blades, reached a speed of more than 400 km/h without the need to change the base helicopter design. At the same time, we managed to maintain low vibration and load levels, which speaks of the high potential of this design,” noted the Director General of Russian Helicopters, Andrey Boginsky. The new rotor blades are currently undergoing factory flight tests on a Mi-28N helicopter.

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Defence

Two Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists killed in the J&K encounter

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Ansar Ghazwatul Hind (AGH), an Al-Qaeda-linked terror outfit in Kashmir, has suffered a major setback. In an encounter on the outskirts of Srinagar, security forces killed two more AGH terrorists.

The AGH terrorists were apprehended after the army and police received specific information about their presence.

During the exchange of fire, forces killed two local Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists from AGH. Both terrorists are Pulwama residents who have been involved in a number of terrorist attacks.

According to police, the terrorists were also involved in an attack on a migrant worker in Pulwama.

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Defence

N. Korea enacts law on preventive nuclear strikes, France calls “threat to peace”

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France criticised North Korea’s adoption of a law announcing its preparedness to launch preventive nuclear strikes on Friday, calling it a “threat to international and regional peace and security.”

The announcement from the foreign ministry came after North Korean state media earlier on Friday reported that Pyongyang had enacted a law authorising preventative strikes, including in the event of conventional attacks.

“This new escalation on the part of the North Korean authorities represents a threat to international and regional peace and security,” said a ministry spokeswoman.

France “notes with great concern the increasingly aggressive declarations from North Korea,” she added.

The decision by Pyongyang practically puts an end to the possibility of denuclearization talks after leader Kim Jong Un said that the nation’s nuclear status is now “irreversible.”

The announcement comes at a time when the North and South are experiencing greater conflict.

In addition to conducting a record number of weapons tests this year, Pyongyang has blamed the COVID-19 outbreak in its territory on Seoul.

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Defence

China has successfully tested its first solar-powered drone capable of acting as a satellite

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A Chinese government official informed in a tweet that China has successfully tested its first fully solar-powered unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), named Qimingxing-50, which can fly for months and can function even as a satellite if required.

What is the significance of this test flight?

The Qimingxing-50, with a wingspan of 50 m, is a high-altitude long-endurance drone that is capable of high-altitude aerial reconnaissance, assessing forest fire and can also be used for communications.

This technology will bolster Chinese defences in space and at sea. It can be used in the fields of renewable energy, new materials, and aeronautical engineering. The Chinese official also asserted that this test flight is an important step towards sustainable development.

Use of the UAV as a satellite:

The UAV, whose name translates as “Morning Star-50” in English, is claimed to be capable of functioning uninterrupted for months. This capability of having a long-endurance flight gives it a use case of operating as a satellite.

Like satellites, it is fully electric-driven, powered by solar energy and can operate at 20 km above the Earth’s surface for an extended period of time continuously. It is also referred to as a “High Altitude Platform Station” or a “pseudo-satellite.”

It can be used when there is unavailability or disruption in satellite services. The report says that compared to the cost and complexity of installing a satellite in orbit, this UAV is much more cost-effective and easy to operate.

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Defence

Strict security measures have been taken at the Central Vista ahead of the inauguration by PM Modi

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As Prime Minister Nrendra Modi is going to inaugurate the newly revamped Central Vista on Thursday, over 1,500 police personnel have been deployed for security over there.

A senior official of Delhi Police who is aware of the security arrangements said that the area has been divided into eight zones, which will be manned all day by eight deputy commissioners of police (DCPs) and additional deputy commissioners of police (ADCPs).

The officer, on condition of anonymity, said, “Besides 17 assistant commissioners of police (ACPs), 43 inspectors and nearly 1,200 upper and lower-rank staff of Delhi Police will be patrolling in the areas. While ten Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) companies will patrol the area during the day, two additional CAPF companies have been deployed for security arrangements during the evening shift.As many as five patrolling teams in 10 mobile patrolling vans (MPVs) will be keeping a constant watch on all the public movement in the area.” 

Another officer said that, “The Multi Zone Door Frame Metal Detectors (DFMD) have been installed at 90 points in 25 locations in the area. Apart from one anti-drone gun, one counter-unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has also been installed in the area, to detect, track, and ultimately disrupt and destroy any suspicious aerial intrusion. While five teams of spotters will keep a strict vigil in the area, another five traffic decongestion teams have been deployed there to immediately remove any traffic bottlenecks in the area. As many as five SWAT teams have been deployed in the area to avert any emergency crisis.”

The official added that drones will not be permitted near Central Vista on Thursday.

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Defence

Pakistani rangers opened fire on BSF patrolling party in J&K

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As per the reports, Pakistani rangers opened fire on a Border Security Force (BSF) patrolling party in Jammu and Kashmir’s Arnia sector on Tuesday morning, prompting the BSF to respond appropriately to the “unprovoked firing”.

“Today morning the alert BSF Jammu troops gave a befitting reply to the unprovoked firing by Pak rangers on BSF patrolling party in Arnia Sector. No loss (of lives) or injury (reported) to the BSF troops,” a statement issued by a BSF spokesperson said.

On February 24, 2021, India and Pakistan agreed to strictly adhere to all agreements and understandings concerning cross-border firing along the Line of Control (LoC) and International Border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir, among other sectors.

Other incidents of firing by Pakistani troops have occurred in the last year and a half, but Tuesday’s incident was “a major one” and occurred on a day when Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was in India for talks, an officer anonymously said.

According to a second officer, the Indian Army and BSF respond immediately and effectively to unprovoked firings and ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the LoC and IB.

Before the agreement in 2021, there were 5,133 ceasefire violations in 2020, 3,479 in 2019, and 2,140 in 2018. However, this number dropped to around 700 last year. Statistics for 2022 are not yet available.

The Indian government has maintained that it is Pakistan’s responsibility to create a conducive environment by taking credible, verifiable, and irreversible action to ensure that no territory under its control is used for cross-border terrorism against India in any way.

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Defence

India sends the body of Lashkar terror operative via LoC in Poonch

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Pakistan accepted the body of Tabarak Hussain, Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist operative via Chakan Da Bagh on the Line of Control in Poonch district on Monday.

“Officials of the Indian Army and civil administration took the body of slain terrorist in an ambulance to Chakan Da Bagh where it was handed over to Pakistani army officials,” said a senior official.

Tabarak Hussain, son of Mistri Malik of Sabzkote in PoK, was apprehended in an injured state by the army on August 21 in the Jhanger area of the Nowshera sector in Rajouri.

Tabarak was apprehended while allegedly infiltrating with a fidayeen terror group to attack Indian army posts along the LoC.

However, Indian army troops noticed the movement and opened fire on the intruding terror group, injuring Tabarak while other infiltrators fled to PoK.

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