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Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25 Foxbat

Role: interceptor, reconnaissance
Builder: Mikoyan-Gurevich
Variants: MiG-25P (Foxbat-A), MiG-25RB/RBV/RBT (Foxbat-B), MiG-25PU/RU/U (Foxbat-C), MiG-25RBK/RBS/RBSh/RBF (Foxbat-D), MiG-25PD/PDS (Foxbat-E), MiG-25BM (Foxbat-F)
Operators: Russia, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, India, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine

The MiG-25 was designed as a purpose built interceptor lacking maneuverability and agility. The MiG-25 holds the record for the fastest production fighter aircraft ever built. It has two powerful afterburning turbo fans each capable of delivering 110 kN (24,700 lb) of thurst. It is equipped with a simple but very powerful radar for long range missile guidance. The MiG-25 relies on ground control radars for guidance to the target. The MiG-25P (Foxbat-A) was the first interceptor model, improved radar, fire control and engines resulted in the MiG-25PD and PDS or Foxbat-E.

The tremendous speed and high service plafond make it also a good aircraft for photo reconnaissance. The variants for the recce role are the MiG-25RB/RBV/BBT (NATO codenamed Foxbat-B) and the later MiG-25RBK/RBS/RBSh and RBF models, NATO codename Foxbat-B, which had improved radar, sensors and cameras.

Two seat trainer variants are the MiG-25PU for the interceptor types, MiG-25RU for the recce types, and the basic MiG-25U variant. All designated as Foxbat-C by NATO.

The latest variant MiG-25BM or Foxbat-F is basically a MiG-25RB with ECM equipment instead of the recconnaissance equipment. It is developed for the suppression of enemy air defences, especially SAM radar sites and is armed with the Kh-58 stand-off anti-radiation missiles.

The MiG-25 is still operated, especially in the photo reconnaissance role. India is one of the biggest operator of MiG-25s among the export countries but is planning to have phased out the aircraft by 2005.

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Copyright 2002-2010 Niels Hillebrand unless stated otherwise. All rights reserved.