Aviation & Aerospace Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Small Arms Warships & Submarines Military Ranks U.S. Military Pay Special Forces DoD Dictionary (Alpha-to-Zulu) Military Alphabet Code

Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite)

Single-Seat, Single-Engine Strike Fighter Prototype

France | 1970

"The Dassault Milan, with its unique retractable foreplane arrangement, was unsuccessfully proposed to the Swiss Air Force as a strike solution."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/28/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
It only seemed natural to continue the successful line of supersonic single-seat, single-engine jet-powered fighters by Dassault of France down various roads. The Cold War-era delta-winged platform, begun with the "Mirage III" model of 1961, this entry going on to see total serial production reach 1,422 units with military operators all over the globe - the French Air Force becoming the largest with 348 units accepted. The success of Mirage III has been embodied by the facst that the series continues to fly today (2019) with the Pakistan Air Force as 89 are committed to the service. Other notable Mirage family fighter forms became the "Mirage IIIV", "Mirage 5", and South African Atlas "Cheetah" - all detailed elsewhere on this site.

It was inevitable that this same aircraft family continued to be branched across efforts intended to produce an even better end-product for either local or global customers. Such was the case with the Mirage "Milan" that was proposed in the latter part of the 1960s as a single-seat, single-engine strike-minded aircraft. The design, developed through a joint-venture with the Swiss-based company "Fabrique Federale d'Avions" ("Swiss Federal Aircraft Factory" = SFAF), produced several flyable prototypes to prove the aircraft sound - a first-flight recorded on September 27th, 1968. At this point in history, the Swiss Air Force was in the running to succeed its aging stock of British-borne Hawker "Hunter" jet-powered fighters.

The key change to the Mirage III design was the implementation of retractable, forward-cranked foreplanes regarded as "moustaches". These were situated along the sides of the forward fuselage section and used to improve controlling of the aircraft at low-level, low-speed flight envelopes - mainly during take-off, landing, and attack actions. The first base development airframe was an existing Mirage 5J No.2 aircraft and this was then joined by a modified Mirage IIIR model. In time, the aircraft came to be known as the "Milan" ("Kite") and a definitive, third, prototype entry converted from a Mirage IIIE joined the development phase.

The relatively simply modification to the existing, proven Mirage III design led to an aircraft having greater Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) capabilities which resulted in greater war loads over range. Additionally, take-off runs were shortened and low-altitude handling was improved as expected. On the whole, the main form (single-engine, single-rudder fin, side-mounted intakes, tricycle undercarriage, etc...) and function of the aircraft were retained which meant that all of the strengths of the original design were still apparent throughout the Milan. Early testing with the moustache foreplanes was conducted on a Mirage platform with fixed versions of the wings, this phase completed in March of 1969.

The Mirage IIIE prototype, "Milan S-01", finished with reworked avionics and powered by a single SNECMA "Atar" 9K50 afterburning turbojet engine of 15,885lb thrust output (the changes intended to better mimic the production-quality form), took to the air for the first time on May 29th, 1970.

The production version of the aircraft was to be recognized as the "Milan S" and carry the navigation-attack system already fitted (and proven) in the SEPECAT "Jaguar" strike aircraft line. The Milan was slated for initial deliveries to expecting customers in 1972.

As completed, the strike fighter featured a standard armament fit of 2 x 30mm ADEN automatic cannons with an optional war load rated up to 8,800lb, all in the form of externally-held ordnance. Ordnance options were to include the usual gamut of conventional drop bombs of various potency, air-to-surface rocket pods, and jettisonable fuel stores (the latter to increase operational ranges). Weapons were mounted to seven hardpoints found under the aircraft include a fuselage centerline location and three under-root, underwing positions at each side.

The capable Milan was offered to the Swiss Air Force alongside the America-originated LTV A-7 "Corsair II" - a capable strike fighter in its own right - but the service eventually elected to continue operating its fleet of Hawker Hunters for the time being - leaving the Mirage Milan to the pages of military aviation history.

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.
Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Dassault S-01 (Prototype) Single-Seat, Single-Engine Strike Fighter Prototype.
1 x SNECMA Atar 9K-50 afterburning turbojet engine developing 15,885lb of thrust.
1,491 mph
2,400 kph | 1,296 kts
Max Speed
54,134 ft
16,500 m | 10 miles
Service Ceiling
2,082 miles
3,350 km | 1,809 nm
Operational Range
16,500 ft/min
5,029 m/min
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Dassault S-01 (Prototype) Single-Seat, Single-Engine Strike Fighter Prototype.
49.4 ft
15.05 m
O/A Length
27.1 ft
(8.25 m)
O/A Width
14.8 ft
(4.50 m)
O/A Height
16,535 lb
(7,500 kg)
Empty Weight
33,069 lb
(15,000 kg)
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite) Single-Seat, Single-Engine Strike Fighter Prototype .
2 x 30mm ADEN automatic cannons mounted internally.

Up to 8,818lb of externally-held stores across seven hardpoints to include conventional drop bombs, rocket pods, and jettisonable fuel tanks.
Notable series variants as part of the Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite) family line.
Milan ("Kite") - Base Project Designation.
Milan S-01 - Initial prototype from the Mirage IIIE framework.
Milan S - Proposed production-quality versions designation.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 3 Units

Contractor(s): Dassault Aviation - France
National flag of Switzerland

[ Switzerland (rejected) ]
1 / 1
Image of the Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite)

Going Further...
The Dassault Mirage Milan (Kite) Single-Seat, Single-Engine Strike Fighter Prototype appears in the following collections:
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2024 Military Pay Scale Military Ranks U.S. DoD Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols US 5-Star Generals WW2 Weapons by Country

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

Part of a network of sites that includes Global Firepower, WDMMA.org, WDMMW.org, and World War Next.

©2024 www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-2024 (21yrs)