Aviation Photo #2002487 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21MF - Romania - Air Force

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Armed with K-13 (AA2 Atoll) and RS-2US (AA-1 Alkali) missiles.
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    Alex Trandafir
    Romania - Air Force
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21MF
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21
    In Flight
    July 8, 1994
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Distinct Views: 35,320
Photo Added: October 24, 2011

Comments (9)

6 years ago
Here you brought to us the HISTORY ! This picture is just awesome, in her quality as in her interest. A 'Beagle' in service at that time already seems original, but to see that the Alkali is still used by the Air Force in 1994, it's the real surprise of this photo !
6 years ago
Thank you for sharing this wonderful picture with us!
6 years ago
The real surprise in this photo is the aircraft in the middle. An airworthy Il-28 of the Romanian air force, flying in 1994 - this is really unbelievable! The author should say a bit more about how this photo came about.
6 years ago
Bravo, Stas
6 years ago
The Hong 5 bomber belonged to the former 138th Recce Sqn, while the MiG-21s were from 86th Fighter Regiment, both from Fetesti airbase. We organized the photoshoot / training ride along the Danube river. There was a second Hong 5 about 200 meters ahead, the tail gunner taping the formation head on.
6 years ago
The Romanian Beagles were Hong-5 and a number served until August 2001, duties included target towing
6 years ago
That missile is most likely NOT an AA-1 Alkali, but an A-90 - the first Romanian made air-to-air missile. As with its Soviet sibling, the A-90 was a beam riding missile designed solely for engaging bombers. As it was an aging, obsolescent technology it was only used in limited numbers and the experience was put to use in developing other AA missiles. Which brings me to another point - the AA-2 Atolls seen here might also in fact be improved indigenous variants - the A-91 IR homing missile.

And while I'm on the subject of Romanian air-to-air missiles, there was also the A-901/911 family of BVR missiles; the A-901 was a SARH variant and the A-911 an IR homing variant. Sadly these missile, loosely based on the R-27/AA-7 Apex, never made it past the prototype stage and the project was abandoned in 1990 (like many other military projects after the fall of communism). The most recent attempt at making a relatively modern AA missile is the RAV-RS (A-960) short range IR missile. It's basically an improved R-60/AA-8 Aphid and it's still in use on the MiG-21 Lancer and IAR-99 Soim.

So there you go... I bet most people had no idea Romania was among the countries to have developed and built indigenous air-to-air missiles. Note: none of these Romanian missiles were direct copies of Soviet missiles. They were developed based on Soviet counterparts, but adapted (and sometimes improved) to what the local industry could manage.
5 years ago
Thanx for sharin..this is a lovely pic..
4 years ago
This is a fantastic subject matter. The question arises, have Soviet tail gunners EVER shot down an aircraft....besides one of their own I mean?

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