The Black Sea Fleet’s 318th Independent Composite Aviation Regiment has begun receiving Ka-31P AEW&C helicopters. The Ka-31P AEW&C can track foreign ships and aircraft from long distances, and laze targets for Kalibr, Oniks, and Tsikon missiles.
The Black Sea Fleet received the latest Ka-31P machines are deployed in the Crimea. Their equipment not only sees targets at a distance of hundreds of kilometers, but also provides a high-definition radar picture. The helo will be able to track NATO ships in the Black Sea. And most importantly – the helicopter is capable of aiming hypersonic missiles at the target.
The Ka-31P was originally designed to detect surface and air targets, including U.S. Harpoon missiles. It is also able to automatically transmit data on air and surface conditions to ground control posts, ships, and air defense control systems.
The new helo has target designation capability for Russian anti-ship missiles as well. In real-time, it can drive to the Kalibr and Onyx missiles. Recently, hypersonic Zircons have been added to this arsenal. Aiming with a helicopter of early warning radar (AWACS) increases the likelihood of an accurate hit of missiles and increases the lethality of their salvo.
The machine has a maximum take-off mass of 12.5 tons and a cruising flight speed of 220 km / h. The operational range of the helicopter is 700 km.