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Mikoyan MiG-AT


Advanced Jet Trainer / Light Attack


The Mikoyan MiG-AT competed unsuccessfully against the Yakovlev Yak-130 to become the next Advanced Jet Trainer of the Russian Air Force.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Edited: 11/18/2019
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Specifications


Year: 2002
Status: Cancelled
Manufacturer(s): Mikoyan OKB - Russia
Production: 2
Capabilities: Ground Attack; Close-Air Support (CAS); X-Plane; Training;
Crew: 2
Length: 39.37 ft (12 m)
Width: 33.30 ft (10.15 m)
Height: 14.50 ft (4.42 m)
Weight (Empty): 9,921 lb (4,500 kg)
Weight (MTOW): 17,196 lb (7,800 kg)
Power: 2 x SNECMA-Turbomeca "Larzac" 04R20 turbofan engines developing 3,175lb of thrust OR 2 x Aviadvigatel (Soyuz) RD1700 turbofan engines developing 3,750lb of thrust.
Speed: 621 mph (1,000 kph; 540 kts)
Ceiling: 45,932 feet (14,000 m; 8.7 miles)
Range: 746 miles (1,200 km; 648 nm)
Operators: Russia (cancelled)
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the reborn Russian Air Force entered a period of restrained spending and general decline which severely restricted procurement capabilities. Nevertheless, the service sought modernization and, among one of its many requirements, there stood a pressing need to upgrade its Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) force made up of an aging line of Czech-made Aero L-29 and L-39 aircraft (detailed elsewhere on this site). This led to a competition featuring the Yakovlev Yak-130 and the competing Mikoyan "MiG-AT". In the end, the Yak-130 was selected for the government contract, leaving just two flyable MiG-AT prototypes from the now-cancelled Mikoyan venture.

Because of the Russian financial situation, Yakovlev teamed with Italian defense powerhouse Leonardo while MiG-AT partnered with French aero-engine-maker SNECMA/Turbomeca. In the latter, the partnership was established in 1992 and it was agreed that the two flyable prototypes to be had would be fitted with 2 x Larzac turbofan engines for inherent power. Additionally, the French involvement opened the MiG-AT to the global export stage by providing a variant that could be marketed to Western powers complete with French-originated engines (SNECMA-Turbomeca Larzac 04R20 series) and Thales avionics (conversely Russian versions of this same aircraft would centered on Russian engines - Aviadvigatel (Soyuz) RD1700 turbofans - and avionics).

Mikoyan engineers elected for a highly-conventional design arrangement in their MiG-AT, with low-set straight wing mainplanes, twin-seat tandem cockpit (for student and instructor), and a traditional tailplane arrangement seating the horizontal plane at the rudder's midway point (an early design saw the horizontal plane seated atop the fin). The twin engine installation would be side-by-side in typical fashion and aspirated by small side-mounted fuselage intakes. A retractable tricycle undercarriage was used for ground-running.

Internally, the aircraft featured composite construction. Controlling was aided by Fly-by-Wire (FbW) software and hardware, allowing the design to be inherently unstable. Additionally, the control scheme was designed to be customizable by the operator so that the aircraft could mimic the flight characteristics of various in-service Russian fighter jets for training. The cockpit would sport the usual systems such as a wide-angled Head-Up Display (HUD) and Hands-On-Throttle-And-Stick (HOTAS) - all set to mimic modern-day fighters. Mission support would be largely handled by large Multi-Function Displays (MFDs).

With ground-running trials underway in March of 1996, a first-flight of a MiG-AT prototype was formally had that month on March 21st. This form carried the French engines and Western avionics fit. The second followed with the full Russian configuration and was officially revealed in the latter part of 1997. It was publicly displayed at the international level at Paris Air Show 2001.

Variants of the series went on to include the original MiG-AT twin-seat AJT. This was to be followed by the MiG-AC, a proposed single-seat attacker completely modified for the combat role and featuring a shortened fuselage assembly. A hybrid offering was also to come online as the MiG-ATC. This version was to became a combination platform satisfying AJT and light attack through a singular platform and carry Helmet-Mounted Displays (HMDs) for the pilot and complete support for Air-to-Air and Air-to-Surface missiles and drop ordnance. None of the variants saw the light of day.

At any rate, the MiG-AT lost out to the competing Yak-130 in a 2002 resolution. Mikoyan representatives attempted to keep their project afloat - indeed certification was granted in 2004 - by interesting foreign buyers in the type but these initiatives fell to naught. In June of 2018, rumors arose of a possible resurrection of the MiG-AT program but these have yet to be founded.






Armament



Light strike variants were to support gun pods, cannon pods, rocket pods, conventional drop bombs, precision-guided bombs, air-to-air missiles, air-to-surface missiles, and jettisonable fuel tanks across 1 x Centerline and 6 x Underwing (three per wing) external hardpoints.

Graphical image of an aircrat automatic cannon
Graphical image of an aircraft machine gun pod
Graphical image of an aircraft cannon pod
Graphical image of an air-to-air missile weapon
Graphical image of a short-range air-to-air missile
Graphical image of an aircraft air-to-surface missile
Graphical image of an aircraft rocket pod
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Graphical image of an aircraft guided bomb munition
Graphical image of an aircraft external fuel tank

Variants / Models



• MiG-AT - Base Project Designation; two flyable prototypes completed.
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