Zhukovsky: Russian state-owned arms exporter, Rosoboronexport, and Indian state-owned aerospace giant, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) have signed a contract at the MAKS-2009 air show for the delivery of 26 RD-33 series-3 engines to India.
The RD-33 series-3 is an upgraded version of the baseline RD-33 turbofan engine and is aimed primarily at providing a longer service life. The model is essentially used as an upgrade on older variants of the MiG-29, such as the MiG-29M and MiG-29SMT. On an ad-hoc basis it can even be equipped with thrust vectoring nozzle (TVN).
"These engines are installed on MiG aircraft, including the MiG-35 fighters, which are participating in the announced tender on the delivery of 126 fighters to the Indian air force," a Rosoboronexport official said.
This may be slightly off the mark as the variant of the RD-33 that is being used as the engine for the 4++ generation MiG-35 is actually the RD-33MK (Sea Wasp), an improved version of RD-33.
This is the version that is designated for new MiG-35 jet fighters, currently in contention for the Indian Air Force's MMRCA contract, and also for MiG29K ship-borne fighters already contracted for as the air complement for the Indian acquired INS Vikramaditya\Adm Gorshkov carrier.
The new RD-33MK engine features a 7% higher power in comparison to the baseline model due to the usage of modern materials on the cooled blades. It retains the length and maximum diameter while increasing afterburner thrust and dry weight to 9,000 kgf and 1,145 kg respectively. Service life has been increased to 4,000 hours.