Zhukovsky, Moscow Region / 13 August 2012 – Russian Helicopters, part of state defence holding company Oboronprom and a leading global designer and manufacturer of helicopters, took part in celebrations for the 100th anniversary of the Russian Air Force in the Moscow Region town of Zhukovsky on August 10-12.
The three-day celebration began on August 10 in the St Petersburg suburb of Gatchina, the site of the Air Force’s first-ever military airfield. The action then moved to Zhukovsky, which hosts the annual MAKS Air & Space Salon. The event attracted more than 200,000 visitors, with demonstrations by the Air Force and DOSAAF (the armed forces voluntary association), who were joined by pilots from the UK, Italy, Turkey, France, Poland, Finland and Latvia.
The Golden Eagles aerobatics team gave a display of the Ka-52 Alligator and Mi-28N Night Hunter models constructed by Russian Helicopters, and there were also demonstration flights of the Mi-26, Mi-8, Ansat-U, Mi-35 and Mi-2.
Helicopters have a long and distinguished history of service in the Soviet and Russian Air Forces, and have demonstrated their operational versatility as a workhorse carrying out everything from supply and logistics to attack missions. The first rotary-wing aircraft – the A-4 designed by V.A. Kuznetsov – entered the Red Army in 1934. During the Second World War, a squadron of A-7-3a gyroplanes designed by Nikolai Kamov fought during the siege of Smolensk; the squadron’s engineer was Mikhail Mil, subsequently also a renowned designer of helicopters.
Today, the Russian Defence Ministry remains one of the largest and most important clients of Russian Helicopters, with more than 1,000 helicopters slated for delivery to the Air Force in the next decade. In the past few years, the Company has delivered models including the Mi-28N, the Mi-8, Mi-26, Mi-35 and Ansat-U. The Ka-52 has also undergone testing and is starting to enter service.