MiG-25RBSch "Foxbat-D" at the Kubinka military airfield
March 6, 1964
1969 to 1985
|Number of pieces:||
The Mikojan-Gurewitsch MiG-25 ( Russian Микоян-Гуревич МиГ-25 , NATO code name : Foxbat , German Foxbat ) is a twin - engine, single - seat interceptor and reconnaissance aircraft that was developed by the Mikojan-Gurewitsch design office in the Soviet Union .
The early 1960s were in the Soviet Union on the basis of Je-166 Mikoyan-Gurevich made initial investigations as a suspected threat of US supersonic bomber as the Convair B-58 and especially the Mach -3-fast Lockheed A-12 encountered could be. The tender was a Mach-3-fast fighter aircraft that should be able to intercept equally fast aerial targets at altitudes of up to 25,000 meters. The main purpose of the MiG-25, which was then under development, was ultimately to intercept the Lockheed A-12 Mach 3 reconnaissance aircraft, the construction of which the Soviet military command had learned in 1960. The official start of the program for preliminary investigations was March 10, 1961. The operational doctrine was based on the detection of the target by a powerful radar system and the combat with specially developed long-range air-to-air missiles of the type Wympel R-40 (NATO designation AA-6 "Acrid"), although classic dogfights were not planned. When radar there was a pulse radar Smertsch -A (smertsch, Russian смерч for tornado , Tornado , NATO Name Foxfire ) with a limited look-down capability . In order to achieve a good range resolution, the radar worked with a high pulse repetition frequency. In the same year the decision was made to manufacture the machine essentially as a welded construction, which was to consist mainly of creep-resistant , rust-free nickel steel . A semi-automatic welding process was developed as a joining process in order to be able to control structural changes in the material.
The main part of the cell was made of WNS-2, WNS-4 and WNS-5 steel. In addition, the cell consisted of 11% heat-resistant Dural grade D19 and ATCH-1 as well as 8% titanium and 1% other materials. The radar cladding was made of a heat-resistant plastic that could withstand temperatures of up to 300 ° C.
The draft provided for a shoulder wing with a two-spar delta wing 4.4% thick, 42.5 ° sweep and without a V-position (the wings of later machines had a 5 ° negative V-position). A single boundary layer fence was provided on each of the wings . Welded fuel tanks were housed in the wings. The two engines had air inlets with variable geometry. The rudder unit consisted of two outwardly inclined surfaces, which carried the rudder. The wing tips could be equipped with winglets pointing symmetrically upwards and downwards or with additional tanks of 600 liters each, which carried winglets pointing downwards. The fuselage had an oval cross-section and consisted of 14 main frames ; it merged into the engine area in the middle between the air inlets. Areas that are particularly exposed to thermal stress are made of titanium. The cell was designed to be fireproof near the engines and protected from the radiant heat of the engines by a 5 µm thick layer of silver . Up to 5 kg of silver were used per aircraft. Glass fiber mats served as insulation . A convergent / divergent system that was adjusted by twelve hydraulic cylinders was provided for the engine outlets. There were four integral tanks in the cell, which together with the wing tanks could hold 17,660 liters of fuel. The high- lift aids were sacrificed to achieve the highest possible speed , there were no slats and only simple landing flaps . The load factor was also limited to 4.5 g . The aerodynamics were designed primarily for high speeds and great heights, less for maneuverability.
The main landing gear , each equipped with a single wheel measuring 1300 × 360 mm, was pulled in towards the front between the intake tract and the outer skin. It had multi-disc brakes with an anti-lock braking system supported by a braking parachute . The nose wheel was steered hydraulically and was also braked. It was pulled forward into the bow and also carried the landing light. The hydraulic system consisted of a main and a support system. It had four pumps driven by the engines and four pressurized gas batteries. The pressure-ventilated and air-conditioned cockpit had a bulletproof windshield and an ejection seat of the type KM-1 , which was exchanged for the KM-1M in series production.
The official approval for the development of a fighter variant (MiG-25P) and a reconnaissance aircraft variant (MiG-25R) was given in February 1962. Shortly afterwards there was also the development approval for the corresponding two-seater school versions (MiG-25PU and MiG-25RU).
The first prototype , still with the development designation MiG Je-155R-1 (a reconnaissance aircraft) took off for the first flight on March 6, 1964 . The prototype of the fighter, MiG Je-155P-1, followed on September 9, 1964.
The West perceived the MiG-25 as a countermeasure against the planned US supersonic bomber North American XB-70 . Like the F-108 escort fighter , the larger XB-70 was never put into service. As one of the last remaining threats for which the MiG-25 was created, the Convair B-58 Hustler was retired from active service in the late 1960s, and operational doctrine for the Dassault Mirage IV was changed accordingly in the early 1970s that it should attack at subsonic speed at low altitude.
A total of 1190 pieces of all variants of the MiG-25 were produced.
Seven of these pre-series machines were produced. They initially had canards and symmetrical winglets . In addition to the powerful radar system with an antenna that scans by +/- 60 °, an IR search system was also to be used, but this was not yet fully developed. The radio system consisted of devices for the medium wave, short wave and ultra short wave range as well as for IFF / SIF / ATC. A radio compass , an instrument landing system and a radar altimeter were on board for orientation . The machines were equipped with a radar warning system to detect enemy air defense measures . An important component was the SAU-155P autopilot , which made it possible to conduct a ground-guided interception hunt, similar to what was possible with the Convair F-106 . One pitot tube holder was on the front of the radar cover, and another next to the cockpit. The system was designed so that it worked flawlessly even at large angles of attack or yaw. The nose wheel was retrofitted with a fender . There was a continuous wave radar illuminator for the mach-5 medium-range air-to-air missiles, the Wympel R-40, which were intended as armament . An additional pair of outer pylons was installed to increase the number of weapon stations.
During the test, there were considerable deficiencies in the flight behavior, the hydraulic system also proved to be undersized and the center of gravity was difficult to control. There were repeated accidents. The canards caused problems and were removed, the air inlets were considered to be sufficient stabilization surfaces for high-speed flight. The winglets were also removed and replaced by anti-flutter masses on the wing tips. The wings initially proved to be structurally too weak, and in certain flight conditions the aileron effect was reversed. Another small boundary layer fence was mounted on each wing to stabilize the air flow between the inner and outer ailerons . The V-position of the wings was changed to -5 °. The flight control system was changed so that at over 800 km / h the elevator deflected together with the ailerons. Nevertheless, on October 30, 1967, a MiG-25 broke apart in the air during a world record attempt; the test pilot Igor Lesnikov was killed.
A water - methanol mixture above Mach 1.5 was injected into the intake air by means of an injection system in order to achieve an increase in density by cooling the intake air , which enables the combustion of more kerosene and thus a higher thrust. The water content increases the density, the methanol is also burned and maintains the combustion temperature in the combustion chamber. A first public demonstration of four prototypes took place on July 9, 1967 during the Air Force Show in Domodedovo .
After the end of the tests, the first series cells were manufactured in 1969. The unrestricted release for use only took place on April 13, 1972.
Three of these pre-series machines were produced. The avionics equipment corresponded to the equipment of the Je-155P except for the radar, which was much inferior and was only used for navigation and weather observation , as well as an improved inertial navigation platform. The various sensors for optical and electronic reconnaissance are housed in the bow. The prototypes had 1200 liter additional tanks fixed to the wing tips with winglets pointing downwards and initially also canards. The vertical stabilizers each had an integrated tank of 350 liters. The rudder units had a straight upper edge. The wings of the third prototype were also given a negative 5 ° V position and, with the elimination of the tanks at the wing tips, the anti-flutter masses of the fighter aircraft. The machine could be equipped with a non-ejectable 5300-liter additional tank and had the more powerful Tumanski R-15BD-300 engines from the start . Armament was not initially planned. The production and use approval took place in February 1969.
The MiG-25P was the first series type of the MiG-25. A non-ejectable external tank with a capacity of 5300 liters was provided to increase the range, but it was not used often. The Soviet units were operational from 1973. The machine was mass-produced and later delivered to Algeria , Libya , Iraq and Syria . Around 600 machines of this type were manufactured. The engine's MTBO was initially only 150 hours. In order for the engine to achieve this durability, extensive design changes were necessary, since it was originally designed as a loss engine for the Tupolev Tu-123 reconnaissance drone. The NATO designation was Foxbat-A
Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25PD / PDS
In 1978 the MiG-25P was replaced in production by the MiG-25PD with improved engines and improved avionics and armament. The bow section was lengthened by 250 mm to accommodate an air refueling nozzle and the much more powerful Saphir-25 pulse Doppler radar with a pulse power of 50 MW. There was also an infrared vision device. The electrical equipment has been strengthened to supply the new consumers. It was now also possible to fire the R-60 air-to-air missiles . In the 1980s, the option of using R-23 and R-73 was added.
The approximately 370 Soviet MiG-25P fighters available in 1978 were upgraded to the MiG-25PD equipment level and were given the designation MiG-25PDS.
The MTBO of the engine was now 1000 hours. Production ran until 1982. The NATO designation was Foxbat-E
In 2001, none of these types were in active service with the Russian Air Force , 131 were in storage.
Reconnaissance planes and bombers
The MiG-25R was the first ready-to-use reconnaissance variant. Compared to the fighter variant, the exhaust pipes of the engines were lengthened and lighter anti-flutter masses were used at the wing ends. The bow was made more pointed and provided air-conditioned and pressure-ventilated space for the reconnaissance avionics. Initially, movable cameras with focal lengths of 650 mm and 1300 mm were used as standard, which could be supplemented by various others depending on the application. The normal cameras recorded a strip of around 100 kilometers (with a focal length of 650 mm) or 50 kilometers (a focal length of 1300 mm) in width. All cameras took pictures through a flat pane of glass protected against fogging and freezing. On the left side there was a plastic surface for the ELINT sensors. For use, the model should fly over the reconnaissance area at an altitude of 20 kilometers at the maximum possible speed of Mach 2.83, and then land again. In 1969 the first series machines (around ten) were produced, but then the MiG-25RB was given preference. The B-samples already produced have been changed accordingly. The NATO designation for this variant is Foxbat-B . Air refueling was not planned.
In 1970 the most important variant, the RB model, went into production. Except for a modified ELINT electronics, it corresponded to the reconnaissance capability of the MiG-25R. In addition to the reconnaissance role, the machine could also be used as a bomber . Up to six bombs weighing 500 kg of the specially heat-resistant type FAB-500M-62T could be carried on underwing and fuselage stations. Some structural reinforcements were necessary for this. Attempts to further increase the bomb load were unsuccessful because structural problems arose that were not manageable. The navigation accuracy has been through the use of a digital orbital 155 -Computers and the Doppler correction DISS-7 improved so that with the bomb target device Pelleng a fully automatic attack without sight of the surface from 20 km altitude at Mach 2.35 been possible when the position of the target sufficiently was known exactly. Production of the MiG-25RB began in 1970 and continued, with modifications, until 1982. The first Soviet units were equipped with the type in early 1972. Machines of this type were exported to Algeria , Bulgaria , India , Iraq , Libya and Syria . MiG-25RB of the Soviet armed forces were stationed in Egypt from 1973 to 1974 . They had Egyptian identifiers and Egyptian camouflage, but were flown by Soviet pilots. NATO designation Foxbat-B
Further reconnaissance variants
Further sub-variants of the MiG-25RB with different Eloka and avionics equipment were partly manufactured parallel to each other.
Eight MiG-25R were converted to monitor Chinese nuclear tests. They received a radioactivity evaluation system and flew various missions in the 1970s. The high speed kept the radiation dose low for the pilots, but some of the machines were contaminated by fall-out and had to be disposed of after the missions.
The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25RBK was a variant of the reconnaissance bomber version without cameras with increased focus on ELINT . The Kub SLAR device was particularly conspicuous , with its antenna in front of the cockpit occupying an area of 1600 × 930 mm. The system was able to transmit reconnaissance data to a ground station in real time. Some machines were given a single camera to align the ELINT data with existing aerial photographs. The variant was manufactured between 1971 and 1980. NATO designation Foxbat-D
The MiG-25RBS was a parallel development of the RBK variant with the significantly improved all-weather Sabla-E- SLAR , which occupied large antenna areas on both sides of the bow. This variant also had no cameras. NATO identifier Foxbat-D
The MiG-25RBF was a further improved RBK variant with a Schar-25-ELINT system and modified ECM equipment. This radio reconnaissance system, which operates in the frequency range from 0.2 to 10.7 GHz, was also able to transmit corresponding reconnaissance data to a ground station in real time. At least one of the aerial cameras used in the original version of the MiG-25RB remained with the MiG-25RBF. Externally, this type could be recognized by four additional antenna surfaces below the bow. Starting in 1981, some MiG-25RBK were modernized to this level, possibly as part of scheduled general industrial overhauls in the Soviet Union. NATO designation Foxbat-D
The MiG-25RBSch was equipped with the much finer-resolution Schompol-SLAR, which was also able to distinguish moving targets from stationary ones. One machine received an air refueling system as a test. NATO designation Foxbat-D
This variant was equipped with an improved ELINT system Wirasch-SRS-9 and had improved ECM equipment. The camera equipment was retained. A differentiation from the RB variant was not possible externally. For a time all MiG-25RB were designated as RBW. NATO designation Foxbat-B
The MiG-25RBT had an improved ELINT system of the Tangasch type, which had an increased bandwidth and was able to evaluate the data collected on the ground. In addition, an improved IFF of the Beriosa type was on board. The machines equipped in this way were produced from 1978. Some RBs that have already been delivered have been retrofitted with the new devices without changing their designation. NATO designation Foxbat-B
From 1990 some machines were given a new gray / green camouflage paint. In 2001, 15 of these machines were still in service with the Russian Air Force.
For crew training there was a specialized training variant with tandem cockpits for each of the two operational purposes.
The PU variant was used to train fighter pilots. A further cockpit for the trainer was built into the nose of these machines. The radar was omitted. The front cockpit worsened the aerodynamics and only Mach 2.65 could be achieved. A double control was installed. The machine was equipped with a system that made it possible to simulate typical combat situations and to simulate a corresponding radar display. Air-to-air missile dummies could be carried at the outstations. In addition, 14 systems had the option of simulating a system failure. The instructor had the option to use the student's ejection seat. A machine was equipped for Svetlana Savitskaya as Je-133 for world record attempts by women, which were carried out between 1975 and 1977. It reached 2683 km / h on June 22, 1975 as a world record for women. A total of four records were recognized by the FAI. The MiG-25PU first flew in 1968 and was produced until 1980. NATO designation Foxbat-C .
The RU variant was used to train reconnaissance pilots. The cockpit was installed in the area of the reconnaissance sensors, so that they were omitted. The school facilities corresponded to the MiG-25PU, but instead of being intercepted, they were geared towards operating the reconnaissance sensors. Compared to the MiG-25PU, the nozzles of the engines were longer and the lining of the brake screens changed. One machine was equipped as a flying test stand for ejection seats, internal name Kreslo . The K-36D ejection seat, which was also examined by NATO and the USAF, was tested with this machine at speeds of up to Mach 2.5 and heights of up to 17,000 meters. The first flight took place in 1972, production continued until 1980. NATO designation Foxbat-C
The BM variant served to suppress enemy air defense positions and was developed from 1972 onwards on the basis of the MiG-25RB armed reconnaissance variant. The bow was lengthened by 720 mm and the ELINT system was specially set up to detect emissions from ground-to-air positions. The ECM measures were also changed for this use. The new avionics also required changes in the cockpit. The range has been increased by a 5800 liter tank under the fuselage and the option of air refueling. Additional antennas were also attached to the bow and to the external load stations. Four Ch-58s (NATO designation: AS-11 Kilter ) could be carried as stand-off armament . They made it possible to combat surface-to-air defense positions from a distance of up to 120 kilometers. The MiG-25BM was built from 1982 to 1985. NATO designation Foxbat-F .
Individual machines with special equipment
Due to the outstanding flight performance, individual MiG-25s were equipped to carry out special tasks.
- In 1982 a MiG-25PDS (registration 7011) was fitted with new ECM equipment to make the machines more viable against anti-aircraft missiles. This included a new radar warner, a new ECM system and an improved flare launcher. The machine was given the type designation MiG-25PDSL. The flight attempts lasted until 1983. Later another machine, registration 91, was similarly equipped, but received an active ECM. The trials were stopped in 1985.
- As part of the Buran space shuttle program, a MiG-25PU was converted so that it could record the flights of the Buran ferry with television cameras and follow various flight profiles of the ferry. This machine was given the designation MiG-25PU-SOTN, registration number 22. It was also used for training and training Buran pilots. Two other machines (code 01 and 02) were converted for the Buran program and, among other things, used to test the ejection seat K-36RB, which was used in the Buran ferry.
- A MiG-25PD was modified as a test vehicle for the Ljulka AL-41 F engine and was given the designation LL 20-84
The different versions of the MiG-25 showed that the basic design still had untapped potential. Further investigations and the construction of more powerful prototypes were then initiated. Ultimately, these developments led to the greatly improved Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-31 .
In 1972, research began to improve general performance parameters such as speed, altitude, climb performance and range. With more powerful variants of the engines and without aluminum in the structure, the Mach-3 threshold should be overcome. This variant was reported to the FAI as Je-266 in the 1970s and set numerous records, some of which still exist today. The type R-15BF2-300 was used as the engine. In addition to the record plane two further machines were built, with the turbofan -Triebwerk Soloviev D-30 internal R and 19,700 liters of fuel were equipped and reached such a range of 3310 kilometers. Extensive studies have shown that, contrary to previous assumptions, it is very possible to use duralumin for many cell parts even for such flight speeds. The findings were incorporated into the MiG-31.
The goals for a modern fighter were redefined as early as 1971. It turned out that it was essential to reliably detect low-flying targets and thus improve the performance of airspace defense. However, digital computers had to be used for this, as analog technology was reaching its limits here. The crew's situational awareness has also been improved thanks to the new digital avionics. Armament had to keep pace with these goals, which led to the development of more effective air-to-air missiles. A flight duration of six hours, which was planned for in-flight refueling, required a second crew member. The sum of these requirements ultimately led to the completely new development of the airframe, structure and avionics, albeit on the aerodynamic basis of the MiG-25. The MiG Je-155MP can therefore be seen as a prototype and development vehicle for the MiG-31 .
- Algeria : 48 MiG-25PD, RBW, PU and RU
- Armenia : a MiG-25PD
- Azerbaijan : eight MiG-25PD, 14 MiG-25RB and six MiG-25 trainers
- Bulgaria : three MiG-25RBT, one MiG-25RU
- India : six MiG-25RBK, two MiG-25RU
- Iraq : seven MiG-25PU, nine MiG-25R and 19 MiG-25PD / PDS
- Kazakhstan : 16
- Soviet Union , later Russia : 42 MiG-25RB were still active in January 2010
- Syria : 16 MiG-25PD, eight MiG-25RB and two MiG-25 trainers
- Turkmenistan : 24 (MiG-25PD / MiG-25PU)
- Ukraine : 79+
- Belarus : about 50 MiG-25s
Group of the Soviet Armed Forces in Germany
Until the withdrawal of the Group of Soviet Armed Forces in Germany (GSSD), the MiG-25 was also stationed in the GDR at the Eberswalde and Werneuchen airfields, where it was called "Sarai" (ru. Сарай, barn) in the aviation slang of the NVA air forces . was called.
|Parameter||Je-155P||MiG-25P||MiG-25PD / PDS||MiG-25RB|
|Years of construction||1964||1964-1988||1978-1982||1970-1982|
|span||14.10 m||14.02 m||13.41 m|
|Length (without pitot tube)||23.30 m||19.72 m||19.75 m||21.55 m|
|Wing area||61.9 m²||61.4 m²|
|Empty mass||20,000 kg||20,020 kg||20,755 kg|
|Max. Takeoff mass||41,000 kg||36,720 kg||41,200 kg|
|Top speed close to the ground||1200 km / h|
|Top speed in 13,000 m||3000 km / h (Mach 2.82)|
|Climbing time to 20,000 m||3.5 min|
|Service ceiling||22,000 m||20,500 m||21,000 m|
|Range||1285 km||1730 km||2130 km|
|Take-off run||1250 m|
|Start roll speed||360 km / h|
|Landing runway||800 m|
|Landing speed||290 km / h||280 km / h|
|Engines||2 x Tumanski R-15B-300||2 x Tumanski R-15BD-300|
|thrust||100.1 kN each||112.0 kN each||109.8 kN each|
- Gun loading of 3500 kg at five external load stations
- Air-to-air guided missile
- 4 × AKU / APU-84-46 suspension points for each 1 × Wympel R-40 R / RD (K-40 or AA-6 "Acryd") - semi-active radar-guided for medium distances
- 4 × AKU / APU-84-46 suspension points each for 1 × Wympel R-40 T / TD (K-40 or AA-6 "Acryd") - infrared-guided for medium distances
- 4 × APU-23M1 starting rails for 1 × Wympel R-23 T (AA-7 "Apex") each - infrared-guided, self-targeting for medium -haul routes
- 4 × APU-23M start rails for 1 × Wympel R-23 R (AA-7 "Apex") each - semi-active, radar-guided for medium-haul routes
- 2 × APU-60-1 start rails for 2 × Wympel R-60 MK (K-60 or AA-8 "Aphid") each - infrared-controlled, self-targeting for short distances
- 2 × P-12-1-D start rails for 1 × GosMKB Wympel R-73E (AA-11 "Archer") each - infrared controlled for short distances
Free Falling Bombs (MiG-25RB only)
- 6 × Basalt FAB-500M-62 (500 kg free-fall bomb )
- 8 × basalt FOTAB-100-140 (100 kg free-fall bomb)
- 1–3 × RN-40 (30 kt tactical free-fall nuclear bomb)
External loads only MiG-25BM
- Air-to-surface guided missile
- 4 × AKU-58 launch rails, each with 1 × Raduga Ch-58 (AS-11 "Kilter") - anti-radar guided missile
- External container
- 1 × permanently mounted additional tank for 5800 liters of kerosene
In the 1960s and 1970s, the record version of the MiG-25, reported as Mikojan-Gurevich Je-266, set a number of world records for speed, rate of climb and altitude, some of which have survived to this day. Two records set by US astronaut John Young in 1962 were broken. The Je-266 reported in the 1960s was actually the three prototypes Je-155R-1, Je-155R-3 and Je-155P-1. The machine, registered in the 1970s as the Je-266M, was the test vehicle Je-155M with more powerful R-15BF2-300 engines.
The following FAI world records are still held by the MiG-25 (Je-266 and Je-266M) in the land-based aircraft class with turbojet drive without weight restrictions (as of September 6, 2006):
- Summit altitude (absolute): 37,650 m (August 31, 1977) (Je-266M)
- Summit height with 1000/2000 kg payload: 37,080 m (June 22, 1977) (Je-266M)
- Climbing time to 25,000 m: 2 min 34.2 s (May 17, 1975) (Je-266M)
- Ascent time to 30,000 m: 3 min 10 s (May 17, 1975) (Je-266M)
- Climbing time to 30,000 m and 1000 kg payload: 3 min 10 s (May 17, 1975) (Je-266M)
- Climbing time to 35,000 m: 4 min 11.7 s (May 17, 1975) (Je-266M)
- Speed on a closed 100 km course: 2605.10 km / h (April 8, 1973) (Je-266)
- Speed on a closed 500 km course: 2981.50 km / h (September 5, 1967) (Je-266)
- Speed on a closed 1000 km course with 2000 kg payload: 2920.67 km / h (September 27, 1967) (Je-266)
In the 2007 edition of “Guinness World Records”, a Mikojan MiG-25 (NATO code name “Foxbat-B”) is listed as the fastest fighter in the world. Guinness gives a radar measurement of a MiG-25 with "about Mach 3.2 (3,395 km / h)".
After the collapse of the Soviet Union , the MiG-25s were initially continued to be used by their successor states, but were soon retired due to the enormous operating costs. The production of spare parts has now largely been discontinued by MiG. In November 2005, however, some machines were still operational.
In 1979 Algeria received 20 MiG-25B, MiG-25BU and 4 MiG-25R reconnaissance aircraft from the USSR. Of these machines, 14 MiG-25B / BU and 3 MiG-25R were still operational in February 2005.
Armenia had at least 16 MiG-25Bs in August 2004.
Azerbaijan has 8 MiG-25PD, 14 MiG-25RB and a total of six two-seat MiG-25RU / BU training machines that were taken over by the Soviet forces in 1991/92.
Bulgaria received 3 MiG-25RBT and one MiG-25RU, but was not satisfied with them due to the local conditions. After the breakup of the USSR, they were soon exchanged for used MiG-21bis (among others). A MiG-25RBT was lost.
India decided in 2002 to retire the 6 MiG-25RB and 2 MiG-25RU of the IAF by 2005. The tasks should be carried out after retirement by reconnaissance satellites and unmanned reconnaissance drones.
The Iraq were from 1980 slowly next 20 MiG-25PD passed eight MiG-25RB. Thousands of Soviet advisors came into the country on the planes, with only four planes handed over by the end of the year and the rest still under Soviet control. Five machines were shot down in the war with Iran by 1983. In the war against Iran, the Mig-25 shot down F-5 and F-4s . In 1985, a machine crashed after an engine explosion. In 1987 a MiG-25 crashed on approach due to a maintenance error. All machines were stationed at the Tammuz base (al-Taqaddum) for the 96th Squadron and operated together with the 6th Squadron, which flew the MiG-29 . In 1991 Iraq owned 18 MiG-25PDs based on the MiG-25P previously delivered to Algeria, Libya and Syria. In Iraq, the MiG-25PD has been studied in detail since it was purchased and should be further developed together with Syria. The machines became the most important interceptor for the Iraqi air force and were maintained and operational at enormous expense. Until 1991, 10 machines could be kept ready for use. The pilots of the 96th Squadron were the most experienced pilots to ever fly the MiG-25PD in combat. On January 16, 1991, the first night of the Second Gulf War, Lieutenant Zuhair Dawood shot down an F / A-18C under Lieutenant Commander Michael "Scott" Speicher with his MiG-25PD .
In December 1992, an American fighter aircraft shot down an Iraqi MiG-25 in the no-fly zone in Iraq.
Libya bought 30 MiG-25PD, 5 MiG-25RU and 5 MiG-25RB. In 1999 talks were being held with Russia regarding an increase in the combat value of the remaining machines. In 2006 the last five machines were taken out of service and stored. The MiG-31 E / FE was a promising candidate for its successor. Due to regime change in Libya, these plans were not pursued.
At the end of the 1990s, Russia had 41 MiG-25s in the Moscow and 28 in the Saint Petersburg military district. The greater part of them were MiG-25RBSch equipped with modern avionics. Around 70 machines had been taken out of service by 2005. Until 2009, some MiG-25 reconnaissance versions were in service in Shatalowo, including the MiG-25RBF and MiG-25RU. Photos from the winter of 2011/2012 from Voronezh showed MiG-25RB previously stationed in Schatalowo in flight service. The remaining 20 machines were stationed on two bases until 2012 (No. 7000 / Voronezh and No. 6964 / Montschegorsk ), but at that time only about 7 were airworthy. These should be upgraded from 2012 to be able to fly missions by 2020. The original plan was to install a new GLONASS navigation system, digital cameras for images and videos, side-view radars and new SIGINT equipment. From October 2012 to September 2013 the last MiG-25s of the Russian Air Force flew at the 6964th Montchegorsk Air Base. Due to an upcoming general overhaul of the flight operations areas, the Su-24M and Su-24MR, which were also stationed there, relocated to nearby Olenogorsk , while the MiG-25 remained at the now temporarily closed airfield. In December 2013, the decision was finally made to decommission the MiG-25.
Syria received a shipment of 8 MiG-25RB reconnaissance aircraft, 30 MiG-25PD fighters and 5 MiG-25PU trainers. In the course of the 1990s there were repeated difficulties in keeping the machines ready for action. In 2001, efforts were made by the Syrian air force to equip some of the aircraft with new avionics so that they can continue to carry out reconnaissance against Israel without having to fly over its territory. In April 2005 there were still 25 machines available.
Belarus took over 62 MiG-25s from the Soviet armed forces. The more modern types of MiG-25s originally remaining in the country were handed over to Russia. In November 2005 all MiG-25s were taken out of service.
September 6, 1976
On September 6, 1976, the Soviet lieutenant Viktor Belenko deserted with his MiG-25P and landed it in Hakodate ( Japan ). He made it possible for westerners to gain a deep insight into the technology of the new Soviet aircraft. The aircraft was disassembled and analyzed by the U.S. Air Force's Foreign Technology Division in Dayton . After 67 days, the aircraft was handed over to the Soviet Union in individual parts. The analysis at that time revealed some astonishing facts for the western states:
- The aircraft was new and represented the very latest in Soviet technology.
- Most of avionics was based on electron tubes , not transistors . It has been speculated that this indicated not bad engineering but rather an attempt by the Soviets to make the systems less sensitive to the electromagnetic pulse (EMP) in a nuclear explosion. Electron tubes can withstand an EM pulse up to 1000 times better than semiconductor electronics.
- The plane was hand welded.
- The whole construction was optimized for production. In places that were not relevant to aerodynamics, there were protruding rivet heads.
- The speedometer had its red line at Mach 2.8 and the pilots shouldn't exceed Mach 2.35. In 1973, the Americans observed a MiG-25 over Israel flying Mach 3.2 and damaging its engines.
- The range at Mach 2.35 was only 1,250 kilometers, while in subsonic flight 1,730 kilometers were possible.
- The maximum load factor with external tanks was only 2.2 g (22 m / s²), without tanks 4.5 g were permissible.
Overall, the western experts were surprised by the extremely functional structure and the conventional materials. However, not all results were made available to the public.
Soviet MiG-25s with pilots and technical personnel of the air force were stationed at Cairo-West airfield from 1971 to reconnaissance Israeli territory from the air. Initially, two MiG-25Rs were used from March 1971 to July 1972, with the crews exchanged in April 1972. From October 1973 to May 1975 four MiG-25RB reconnaissance missions flew out of Cairo. The machines did not have any national emblems.
Machines used by Syria could also only be successfully attacked with specially equipped Israeli McDonnell Douglas F-15s . A MiG-25 was damaged by Hawk guided missiles and shot down by an F-15 with a Sparrow .
In the Second Gulf War , an Iraqi MiG-25 shot down a McDonnell Douglas F / A-18 . This is the only confirmed downing of an F / A-18 by a MiG-25. MiG-25 intervened in the fighting several times, but without getting a kill or being hit. They also proved to be on a par with modern designs, as long as missile armament was used at great distances.
In May 1997 an Indian MiG-25 flew a reconnaissance mission over Pakistani territory. The machine flew at subsonic speed at an altitude of almost 20,000 m and went unnoticed. On the return flight, the pilot accelerated to Mach 2, which caused an alert to Pakistani General Dynamics F-16s due to the sonic boom, but they could no longer reach the MiG.
Russia also used MiG-25 in both Chechen wars . In 1994 MiG-25RB flew missions over Chechnya and Georgia . In 1995 MiG-25s were used again after Su-24s had come under fire from the ground several times on reconnaissance missions. During the second Chechnya war, three MiG-25RB flew reconnaissance missions over Chechnya from September 1999 to February 2000.
The MiG-25R was also used in the Soviet Union to quickly create situational images for disaster control (for example, during snowstorms or floods).
As a reaction to the US reconnaissance flights carried out from April 1982 with the SR-71 along the borders of the Warsaw Contracting States, a squadron of the 787th fighter regiment of the 16th Air Army stationed in the GDR at Eberswalde Finow airfield was 25PD equipped. From then on, two armed MiG-25s were kept on constant alert, which if necessary accompany the US reconnaissance aircraft based at the British base in Mildenhall on their flights over the Baltic Sea, which usually take place twice a week. Before that, MiG-25 of various versions had been stationed with the 931st Independent Guard Reconnaissance Regiment in Werneuchen since November 1974 .
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