Half-century-old Soviet fighter-interceptor of the third generation MiG-25 is still the fastest and highest altitude operating aircraft in the world, developing speeds up to 2.8 Mach numbers, and, in some cases, to 3.2 numbers, however, such opportunities do not provide any advantage to the aircraft, writes We are the Mighty.
In the publication, the American edition recalls the incident with the hijacking of a MiG-25 from the USSR to Japan by pilot Viktor Belenko, which allowed the United States to assess the capabilities of the fighter, in particular, the limited ability to radar target detection in the lower hemisphere.
“When American engineers dismantled, studied, assembled and tested the aircraft, they realized that it would almost always have an advantage in speed and altitude compared to NATO aircraft, but could not benefit from it,” We are the Mighty believes.
In September, The National Interest, an American magazine, wrote that the USSR spent heavily on the production of more than a thousand MiG-25s, although it could instead focus on the production of less expensive multi-purpose vehicles.
In 1969-1985, about 1.2 thousand units of the MiG-25 were produced. The third generation fighter-interceptor is capable of developing, according to open sources, a speed of up to 2.83 Mach numbers and reach a height of 23 kilometers. Depending on the configuration, the aircraft is designed to carry air-to-air missiles or high-explosive bombs.