By Elifnur Başaran
According to the news published by the website “Politico”, Slovakia is currently corresponding with USA and other allied NATO members to provide Ukrainian AF with MiG-29 Fighter Jets. In the same context Slovakia has already provided Ukraine with 1 battery of S-300 Air Defense System and Zuzana 155mm Self Propelled Artillery.
Due to Ukrainian President Zelensky’s requests to Western Allies for arms and equipment, based on the anticipation of the new wave of invasion force from Russian army to target eastern Ukraine, Slovakia continues to show its support. Slovakia has already started a new program to modernize its air force by replacing the old Soviet-made aircrafts with American F-16s.
According to the website “Washington Examiner”, USA will not object any possible transfers from Slovakia to Ukraine. MiG-29 Fighter Jets are currently under use of Ukrainian AF which enables Ukrainian fighter pilots to utilize the transferred aircrafts without any further orientation period.
The Mikoyan MiG-29, NATO reporting name “Fulcrum”, is a twin-engine supermaneuverable fighter jet designed by the Soviet Union . The aircraft is fitted with seven external hardpoints. MiG-29 can accommodate; two medium range air-to-air missiles, six R-73 and R-60 short range air-to-air missiles, airborne bombs weighing up to 3000 kg as well as S-5, S-8, S-24 unguided rockets on four hardpoints besides the integrated 30mm cannon with 150 rounds of ammunition.
MiG-29 is powered by two Klimov RD-33 Turbofan engines which can produce 50.000 Newtons dry and 81.300 Newtons of thrust running on afterburner, each. The aircraft with its internal fuel tanks has the ferry range of 1.500 km and 2.100 km with external tanks. On the original version, MiG-29B, aircraft featured six fuel tanks, four in fuselage and one in each wing, with total capacity of 4.365 liters. For longer flights, early variants supported one external drop tank with the capacity of 1.500 liters whereas the later variants supported two drop tanks with the capacity of 1.150 liters each.