30-Apr-2014 Source: Rostec
Upon its foundation in 2002, the Russian company Oboronprom began to consolidate the helicopter industry under its auspices. By 2004, Oboronprom had incorporated the helicopter design bureau Mile, and by 2005, it joined the Kamovtsy alliance. Nonetheless, the industry remained fragmented.
In 2007, the state corporation Rostec established the subsidiary project of Russian Helicopters under the framework of Oboronprom, thus managing to rebuild the chain of production including development, production, supply of spare parts, and service. The disparate enterprises began to work as a harmonious mechanism. This consolidation has brought tangible benefits.
As the demand for Russian military hardware grew, the new holding company in just four years established its position on the market. Rostec was able to resolve a longstanding conflict between the Mile and Kamov design bureaus, each of which promoted their own attack helicopters while wasting all of their potential on duplicating work and in enmity with each other, thus preventing them from competing with the world leaders.
Rostec consolidated their power and financed both projects, each according to its specialization. Now the two legendary design bureaus are working together, along with the rest of the helicopter industry.
The Night Hunter is one of the most modern combat helicopters in the world. In many ways, it even surpasses the American Apache helicopter. Its guided anti-missile system is capable of accurately hitting a target up to 8 kilometers away. The new Crossbow (Arbalet) radar system allows the pilot to see the battlefield in any weather.
The Ka-52 Alligator reconnaissance and attack helicopter is an all-weather aircraft with two rotors. It can strike armored targets up to 10 kilometers away.
RUSSIAN DESIGNERS ALSO HAVE OTHER REASONS TO BE PROUD
The Mi-35 is the only multi-purpose, dual transport-combat helicopter in the world. Produced both for export and for the needs of the Russian Defense Ministry, it is designed to destroy armored vehicles, provide supporting fire for ground troops, evacuate casualties, and transport cargo. The Mi-35M is a modified version of the military-transport helicopter used for combat missions at any time of day, as well as in all weather conditions.
The Mi-26T is the world’s largest mass-produced civilian helicopter and is often used for complex and large-scale transport and rescue operations.
The Mi-26T is capable of carrying large loads and vehicles weighing up to 20 tons inside the cab or as an external load. The transportation-amphibious version of the aircraft is capable of accommodating 82 people with all necessary equipment. The ambulance version of the Mi-26T can accommodate up to 60 stretchers with the wounded. The Mi-26T can carry up to 14 tons of fuel. The firefighting version of the Mi-26T is equipped with a VSU-15A hose system, which is capable of collecting and transporting 15 tons of water from any source, including shallow ones
EVERY SIXTH HELICOPTER IN THE WORLD IS RUSSIAN
Russian Helicopters has an 85% share of the domestic helicopter market and a 14% of the foreign market. Already, every sixth helicopter in the world is of Russian production.
The holding company already has more than $13 billion in future orders. With the help of Rostec, Russian Helicopters has become a world industry leader. In 2013, the holding company’s revenues reached RUB 138 billion. For Russia, helicopters are not just weapons, but also a promising method of transportation, opening up a larger world of remote villages and reducing distances between cities.
In 2009, Rostec signed an agreement with the Italian company AgustaWestland on the joint assembly of civilian helicopters. A new scientific cluster has been established in Tomilino outside of Moscow for the development of helicopter production.
It’s possible to argue about who invented the helicopter, but it’s perfectly clear who builds them today.