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Mil Mi-28


The Mi-28 is a tandem two-seat, twin-turbine anti-armour helicopter, NATO name Havoc. Design started in 1980 under Marat N Tishchenko, the first of two flying Mi-28 prototypes (012) flew on 10 November 1982.

Each prototype different with the first and second (022) having upward-pointing exhaust diffusers and fixed undernose fairing for electro-optic equipment. The first also had conventional three-blade tail rotor, the second replaced this with the definitive "Delta-H" configuration. The first two prototypes were powered with 1,434kW TV3-117BM engines and VR-28 gearbox.

The three prototypes had a conventional three-bladed tail rotor but was replaced by a 'delta 3' x-configured rotor comprising two independent two-bladed propellers mounted on the same shaft. The gunner, seated in a heavily-armoured front cockpit ahead of the pilot, controls a 30mm cannon normally used on ground vehicles. This is mounted under the nose, which contains a low light level TV and FLIR night control systems. Stub wings, each fitted with two hardpoints, can carry AT-6 'Spiral' radio-guided ATMs, UV-20 pods, or fuel tanks. Infra-red suppressors and decoy dispensers are also fitted to the 'Havoc'.

The third and fourth aircraft built were of Mi-28A (Type 280) basic version.

The first Mi-28A (032) introduced the definitive downward-pointing exhaust suppressors and flew in January 1988, with the second Mi-28A prototype (042) demonstrated at Moscow in 1992 representing the intended production configuration. It had the definitive moving E-O sensor turret undernose, downward-pointing exhaust diffusers and wingtip electronics/chaff dispenser pods. In emergencies an inflatable crew chute is deployed beneath the door sills. The fuel tanks of the 'Havoc' are self-sealing and fire retardant.



Flying controls are hydraulically powered mechanical type with the horizontal stabiliser linked to the collective, and controls for the pilot only.

The five-blade main rotor blades have very cambered high-lift section and sweptback tip leading edge. A full-span upswept tab is on the trailing-edge of each blade. Structure comprises numerically controlled, spirally wound glass fibre D-spar, blade pockets of Kevlar-like material with Nomex-like honeycomb core, and titanium erosion snip on the leading-edge. Each blade has single elastomeric root bearing, mechanical droop stop and hydraulic drag damper. A four-blade GFRP tail rotor with elastomeric bearings for flapping is fitted. A rotor brake lever is on the starboard side of the cockpit. A machined titanium main rotor head with elastomeric bearings, requires no lubrication. Power output shafts from the engines drive the main gearbox from each side, and a tail rotor gearbox, at the base of the tail pylon, is driven by an aluminium alloy shaft inside a composites duct on top of the tailboom. Sweptback mid-mounted wings have a light alloy primary box structure, leading- and trailing-edges of composites, and no wing movable surfaces. There is provision for countermeasures pods on each wingtip, housing chaff/flare dispensers and sensors. The light alloy semi-monocoque fuselage has titanium armour around the cockpits and vulnerable areas. A composites access door is aft of the wing on port side. The swept fin has a light alloy primary box structure, composites leading- and trailing-edges, and a cooling air intake at the base of the fin leading-edge, and exhaust at the top of the trailing-edge. There is a two-position composites horizontal stabiliser.

Landing gear is a non-retractable, tailwheel type, with a single wheel on each unit. Mainwheel tyres size 720x320, pressure 5.40 bar; castoring tailwheel with tyre size 480x200.

Power is from two Klimov TV3-117VMA turboshafts, each 1,636kW, in pod above each wingroot; three jetpipes inside downward-deflected composites nozzle fairing on each side of third prototype shown in Paris 1989; upward deflecting type also tested. Deflectors for dust and foreign objects forward of air intakes, which are de-iced by engine bleed air. The internal fuel capacity is 1,720 litres. Provision for four external fuel tanks on underwing pylons.

The navigator/gunner is in the front cockpit, the pilot behind, on an elevated seat, with a transverse armoured bulkhead between. The flat non-glint tinted transparencies are of armoured glass. A navigator/gunner's door is on the port side, and pilot's door on the starboard side.

The cockpits air conditioned and pressurised by engine bleed air. Duplicated hydraulic systems, pressure 152 bar are fitted, and a 208V AC electrical system is supplied by two generators on the accessory section of the main gearbox, ensuring continued supply during autorotation. A low-airspeed system is standard, giving speed and drift via main rotor blade-tip pitot tubes at -50 to +70km/h in forward flight. Main and tail rotor blades are electrically de-iced. An Ivchenko AI-9V APU in the rear of the main pylon structure supplies compressed air for engine starting and to drive a small turbine for preflight ground checks.

A radio for missile guidance is in the nose radome. Daylight optical weapons sight and laser range-finder are in a gyrostabilised and double-glazed nose turret above gun. A wiper on the outer glass protects the inner optically flat panel.

Two fixed IR sensors on the initial basic production Mi-28; IR suppressors, radar and laser warning receivers standard. Mi-28N has integrated Vitebsk DASS with Pastel RWR, Mak IR warning system, Platan jammer and UV-26 flare dispensers.

Armament is one 2A42 30mm turret-mounted gun (with 250 rounds in side-mounted boxes) in NPPU-28 mount at nose, able to rotate 110 degrees, elevate 13 degrees and depress 40 degrees. The maximum rate of fire is 900 rds/min air-to-air and air-to ground. The two pylons under each stub-wing, each have a capacity of 480kg. The main 2A42 gun is fired and guided weapons launched normally only from front cockpit. Unguided rockets are fired from both cockpits. (When fixed, the gun can also be fired from rear cockpit.)

A small-scale pre-series production was planned, but not initiated, by Rostvertol, Rostov-on-Don, which stated in mid-2001 that it was ready to begin series production.

The Mi-28 was scheduled to enter full service with the CIS forces in 1992, but lost out to the Kamov Ka-50.

The Mi-28N (Nochnoy: Night) added night/all-weather operating capability. Russian Army funding was announced in January 1994 and a demonstrator (014) was modified from the first Mi-28 prototype (012). The first hover was on 14 November 1995, and formal roll-out on 16 August 1996. The first flight was on 30 April 1997. The Mi-28N is equipped with a mast-mounted 360 degree scan millimetre wave Kinzhal V or Arbalet radar (pod soon enlarged in vertical plane), an FLIR ball beneath missile-guidance nose radome and above new shuttered turret for optical/laser sensors, including Zenit low-light-level TV. The cockpit has EFIS. New composites rotor with sweptback blade tips added later. The Mi-28N introduced uprated VR-29 transmission and IKBO integrated flight/weapon aiming system, with automatic terrain-following and automatic target search, detection, identification and (in formations of Mi-28Ns) allocation; Ramenskoye Breo-28N mission control system. The Mi-28N can carry the Igla (SA-16 'Gimlet') AAM and new-generation ASMs.

Total of five trials Mi-28Ns were to be built by Rostvertol; TV3-117VMA engines initially, but 1,839kW Klimov VK-2500s to be installed later. A second helicopter was funded jointly by Rostvertol and Southwest Sberbank.



The Mi-28NEh (Nochnoy, Ehksport: Night, Export) version was offered to South Korea in 2000, and evaluated by Swedish Army in 2001 against Boeing AH-64 Apache and Eurocopter Tiger.

The Mi-28NEh is of conventional gunship configuration, with two crew in stepped cockpits. The original three-blade tail rotor was superseded by a low noise 'scissors' or "Delta-H" type comprising of two independent two-blade rotors set as narrow X (35 deg/145 deg) on the same shaft with self-lubricating bearings, the resulting flapping freedom relieves flight loads. Agility is enhanced by doubling hinge offset of the main rotor blades compared with the Mi-24. The crew compartments are protected by titanium and ceramic armour and armoured glass transparencies. The new composites main rotor can withstand a hit from a round of up to 30mm calibre. Multiple self-sealing fuel tanks in the centre-fuselage are enclosed in a composite second skin, outside the metal fuselage skin. Energy absorbing seats and landing gear protect the crew in crash landings at descent rate of 12m/s. The crew doors are rearward-hinged, to open quickly and remain open in emergency. Parachutes are mandatory for Russian Federation and Associated States (CIS) military helicopter aircrew, but no provision for rotor separation. A port-side door, aft of wing, provides access to an avionics compartment large enough to permit combat rescue of two or three persons, although it lacks windows, heating and ventilation.

A hand crank, inserted into the end of each stub-wing, enables stores of up to 500kg to be winched on to pylons without hoists or ground equipment. The main rotor shaft has 5 degrees of forward tilt, providing tail rotor clearance. The transmission is capable of running without oil for 20 to 30 minutes at the main rotor rpm of 242. With main rotor blades and wings removed, the helicopter is air-transportable in an An-22 or Il-76 freighter.

Mi-28N development cost US$150 million (2000) and unit cost approximately US$15 million to US$16 million (2002).


Engines: 2 x Klimov TV3-117VM turboshaft, 1620kW
Main rotor diameter: 17.2m
Length with rotors turning: 21.6m
Height: 3.82m
Max take-off weight: 11200kg
Empty weight: 7000kg
Fuel: 1337kg
Max speed: 300km/h
Cruising speed: 270km/h
Rate of climb: 13.6m/s
Service ceiling: 5800m
Range with max fuel: 460km
HIGE: 19,025 ft
HOGE: 11,810 ft
Crew: 2

Engines: 2 x Klimov TV3-117VMA turboshafts, 1,863kW
Main rotor diameter: 17.20m
Fuselage length with a cannon: 17.01m
Height: 3.82m
Max take-off weight: 11700kg
Max speed: 320km/h
Cruising speed: 270km/h
Hovering ceiling: 3600m
Range with 10500kg take-off weight: 500km
Range with max fuel: 1000km
Armament: 1 x 30mm cannon, 16 x "Shturm" or "Ataka" anti-tank missiles or 8 x "Igla-V" AA missiles
Crew: 2






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