Russia will begin flight testing the Mi-28NM, an upgraded version of the Mil Mi-28NE Night Hunter, attack helicopter in 2017.
As per the Russian News Agency TASS, the Mi-28NM will be configured with a “fundamentally new 360-degree coverage radar, a new control system and [compatibility] for smart weapons.” The Mi-28NM will also provide its crew with enhanced situational awareness (Sputnik News).
Manufactured by Oboronprom and marketed internationally by Russian Helicopters, the Mi-28NE is one Russia’s emerging defence products for Russian armed forces use and export.
The Mi-28NE is used by Algeria and Iraq. Pakistan reportedly expressed interest in the Mi-28NE.
The Mi-28NE has a normal take-off weight of 10,900 kg and is capable of a cruise speed of 270 km/h and service ceiling of 5,600 metres. It can carry up to 16 anti-tank guided missiles.
Notes & Comments:
The Mi-28NE platform is arguably the Boeing AH-64E Guardian’s leading non-American competitor in the heavyweight attack helicopter market. The Mi-28NE is configurable with a mast-mounted millimetric wave radar, enabling the Mi-28NE to acquire a detailed perspective of the ground and to track and engage moving targets.
Russia heavily marketed the Mi-28NE in 2016, citing the platform’s performance in Russia’s campaign in Syria as an example for the helicopter’s credibility in combat, namely counterinsurgency (COIN), which has been a major theme in Russian arms pushes of late (particularly to the developing world).