Russia successfully tested its latest Ka-52K Katran reconnaissance and combat helicopter during the recent Mediterranean cruise by the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier, Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported.
The Admiral Kuznetsov’s Captain, Sergei Artamonov, heaped praise on the Ka-52K, which is a ship-based version of the Ka-52 Alligator reconnaissance and combat helicopter, calling it “the best of its kind around.”
“The test flights we conducted during the cruise showed that this helicopter has great potential as a weapon and as a major element of our naval airpower,” Artamonov said in a documentary aired by Rossiya-24 on Wednesday night.
The Kamov designers faced the daunting task of adjusting the new ship-borne rotorcraft for use during naval operations in conditions of high humidity and salinity.
The fuselage is covered with resilient anti-corrosion coating and is fitted with folding blades and wings.
The Ka-52K’s firepower is notably greater compared to its land-based counterpart. It can be armed with torpedoes, depth charges and even heavy missiles capable of sinking an enemy warship. The helicopter is equipped with a laser beam guidance system and Okhotnik video processing system.
The onboard Arbalet radar system allows the Ka-52K to effectively perform combat missions even in situations of active electronic jamming. The helicopter can detect hostile vessels at a range of almost 200 kilometers.
The Vitebsk optical and electronic defense system effectively protects the Ka-52K against missiles armed with infrared self-homing warheads.
The helicopter can be further upgraded to carry Kh1AD and Kh35 anti-ship missiles, which are currently used by Su-30, Su-35 and MiG-29K warplanes and are able to inflict serious damage even to aircraft carriers.
In addition, the Ka-52K can carry virtually all types of Western-made airborne anti-ship missiles, which makes it much easier to sell abroad. In 2015 Egypt said it was mulling the purchase of over fifty Ka-52
“The successful tests on board the Admiral Kuznetsov have revived international interest in the3 Ka-52 Katran helicopter,” Rossiiskaya Gazeta wrote.
The Kamov Design Bureau is a part of Russian Helicopters, which is a global leader in the field of helicopter manufacture and the only developer and manufacturer of helicopters in Russia.