What is Mi-17V-5 Military Helicopter that crashed with CDS Gen Rawat onboard?
Designed to transport cargo inside the cabin and on an external sling, the Mi-17V-5 is one of the world’s most advanced transport helicopters.
New Delhi: Mi-17V-5 (domestic designation Mi-8MTV-5) is a military transport variant in the Mi-8/17 family of helicopters. It is produced by Kazan Helicopters, a subsidiary of Russian Helicopters.
Designed to transport cargo inside the cabin and on an external sling, the Mi-17V-5 is one of the world’s most advanced transport helicopters. It can also be deployed in troop and arms transport, fire support, convoy escort, patrol, and search-and-rescue (SAR) missions.
Mi-17V-5 orders and deliveries
The Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) placed an order for 12 Mi-17V5 helicopters during the Aero India show held in February 2013.
The Indian MoD had awarded a $1.3bn contract to Russian Helicopters for 80 helicopters in December 2008. Deliveries to the Indian Air Force (IAF) began in 2011, with 36 helicopters delivered by early 2013.
Rosoboronexport and the Indian MoD signed agreements for 71 Mi-17V-5 helicopters during 2012 and 2013. The new orders were part of a contract signed in 2008.
Rosoboronexport delivered the final batch of Mi-17V-5 military transport helicopters to India in July 2018. The Indian Air Force inaugurated a repair and overhaul facility for Mi-17V-5 helicopters in April 2019.
The US Department of Defence placed a contract with Rosoboronexport for the delivery of 63 Mi-17V-5 helicopters to the Afghan National Army (ANA) in 2011. Kazan Helicopters completed deliveries to the ANA in October 2014.
Russian Helicopters delivered a batch of Mi-8MTV-5-1 military transport helicopters to the Russian Defence Ministry in October 2014.
In June 2015, Russian Helicopters signed a contract with the Belarusian Defence Ministry for the supply of 12 Mi-8MTV-5 helicopters. The deliveries were concluded in April 2017.
Mi-17V-5 medium-lifter was designed based on the Mi-8 airframe. The helicopter retains the outstanding performance characteristics of its predecessors and can fly in tropical and maritime climates, as well as desert conditions.
The large cabin of the helicopter offers a floor area of 12.5m² and an effective space of 23m³. The standard portside door and ramp at rear allow for the quick ingress and egress of troops and cargo. The helicopter can be fitted with an extended starboard sliding door, rappelling and parachute equipment, searchlight, FLIR system, and emergency flotation system.
The helicopter has a maximum takeoff weight of 13,000kg. It can transport either 36 armed soldiers internally or 4,500kg of load on a sling.
Cockpit and avionics
The glass cockpit of the Mi-17V-5 is equipped with state-of-the-art avionics, including four multifunction displays (MFDs), night-vision equipment, an on-board weather radar, and an autopilot system. The advanced cockpit reduces pilots’ workload.
The custom-made Indian Mi-17V-5 helicopters integrate KNEI-8 avionics suite including navigation, information-displays and cueing systems.
Mi-17V-5 weapon systems
Mi-17V-5 is armed with Shturm-V missiles, S-8 rockets, a 23mm machine gun, PKT machine guns, and AKM sub-machine guns. It features eight firing posts for aiming the weapons.
The onboard armament allows the crew to engage enemy personnel, armoured vehicles, land-based targets, fortified fire posts, and other fixed and moving targets.
Survivability of Mi-17V-5 transport helicopter
The cockpit and vital components of the helicopter are protected by armoured plates. The aft machine gun position is also fitted with armoured plates to protect the gunner.
The self-sealed fuel tanks are filled with foam polyurethane and are protected against explosions. The helicopter incorporates engine-exhaust infrared (IR) suppressors, a flares dispenser, and a jammer.
Engine and performance of Mi-17V-5
The powerplant of the Mi-17V-5 integrates either a Klimov TV3-117VM or VK-2500 turbo-shaft engine. The TV3-117VM develops a maximum power of 2,100hp, whereas the VK-2500 provides a power output of 2,700hp.
VK-2500 is an upgraded version of the TV3-117VM engine family. It is equipped with a new full-authority digital control system (FADEC).
The Mi-17V-5 has a maximum speed of 250km/h, and a standard range of 580km, which can be extended to 1,065km when fitted with two auxiliary fuel tanks. It can fly at a maximum altitude of 6,000m.