The Russian military has deployed a prototype of the new Mi-28NM attack helicopter in Syria for testing purposes, the Russian newspaper Izvestia reported on March 21, citing military sources.
“The prototype has already been delivered to Hmeimim airbase in Syria,” the newspaper says.
The Mi-28NM is a modernized variant of the original Mi-28N “Night Hunter.” The new variant features new nose hull, new weapon control systems and new radar. It is also designed to use advanced precision-guided weaponry.
According to Izvestia, the Russian military wants to tests the helicopter’s new equipment and weapons in the high temperatures and dust storms of the Syrian desert.
A recent report by the Russian TASS news agency revealed that the Mi-28NM will be armed with a new guided missile, dubbed “Article 305.” The missile will feature electro-optical seeker, an internal navigation system (INS) and will has a range of more than 25 km. It’s unclear if the new missile will be also tested in Syria.
Earlier this month, Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that Russia has tested 316 models of advanced weapons during its participation in the Syrian conflict. This allowed the country to develop its weapons and combat experience significantly.