Mil Mi-35 Russian Air Force operational helicopter
The Mil Mi-35 is an export version of Mil-Mi-24V with downgraded avionics.
The 9K113 weapons system based on the 9M114 Shtoorm-V (AT-6 Spiral) supersonic ATGM specified by the Air Forces operational requirement finally became available in 1972, marking the appearance of the Mi-35 (izdeliye 242 or Mi-24V).
The new missile was not only faster than the Swatter but had greater accuracy and longer range. It was also more compact, thanks to folding fins, coming in a neat disposable tubular launcher/container. Like its predecessor, the Spiral employed SACLOS guidance: the command link antenna ‘egg’ was slightly larger than the Mi-24D’s and had a more rounded front end with a large dielectric dome. The new antenna was fully articulated and the pod did not need to rotate. The suitably modified targeting/guidance system was now designated Raduga-Sh, the letter Sh referring to the Shtoorm missile. Trials of the 9M114 were completed in 1974.
The Mi24V/Mi-35 prototype was converted from an early- production Mi-24D in 1973. Apart from the ‘canned missiles’ replacing the rather untidy wingtip launch rails of the “D” the Mi-35 differed in having TV3-117V engines uprated to 2.225 shp and an ASP-17V automatic gunsight for the pilot. On production Mi-35s the protective doors of the Raduga-F LLLTV/FLIR pod moved aft on a system of linkages to lie flat against the sides of the pod: this arrangement created less drag than the simple double doors of the Hind-A/D. A second (non- retractable) landing light was added on the port side of the nose.
New communications equipment was fitted, as indicated by two new aerials on the tailboom: a dorsal blade aerial for the R-863 VHF radio and a ventral ‘towel rail’ aerial for the R-828 radio for communication with ground troops. The SRO-2M Khroni IFF was replaced by the SRO-1P Parol (Password) transponder, aka izdeliye 62-01, with characteristic triangular red blade aerials. (Some late-production Mi-24Ds had the new avionics, too.)
The Hind-E, as the helicopter was code-named by NATO, completed its State acceptance trials about a year later than the Mi-24D: however, both models were formally included into the VVS (Soviet Air Force) inventory by the same Government directive as of 29 March 1976. By then some 100 Mi-24As and Ds had been delivered. The Mi-35/Mi-24V entered production in 1976, and nearly 1.500 had been built in Arsenyev and Rostov by 1986.
Improvements were made along the way. Early Mi- 24Vs/Mi-35s and the earlier versions had conventional engine air intakes. However, a big heavy chopper like the Hind would inevitably kick up a local dust storm when operating from dirt pads: this turned into a major problem during the Afghan war. To prevent excessive engine wear and foreign object damage (FOD), PZU vortex-type intake filters were developed and introduced on Mi-24Vs and late-production Mi-24Ds in 1981. The filters proved extremely effective: they were fitted as standard to later versions of the Mi-24 and retrofitted to many early Hind- D/E and even some Hind-A.
Late Mi-35s received an L-006 Beryoza (Birch) radar homing and warning system (RHAWS), aka SPO-15LM, with characteristic protuberances on the forward fuselage sides and the tail rotor pylon’s trailing edge to give 360 deg coverage. The forward ‘horns’ were initially fitted between the two cockpits, but soon moved to a position aft of the pilot’s cockpit. Four ASO-2V-02 infra-red countermeasures (IRCM) flare launchers with 32 flares apiece were mounted under the tailboom for protection against heat-seeking missiles, later giving way to six identical units on the aft fuselage sides, and an L-166V- 11E active IRCM jammer was installed aft of the main rotor head. The jammer was a thimble-shaped fairing enclosing a powerful xenon lamp with a rotating reflector, in the fashion of the flashing blue light on a police car. It emitted a pulsed IR signal which darted erratically, disappearing and reappearing, causing the missile to lose track of the target. These were also fitted to some late Mi-24Ds, which have sometimes been referred to as Hind-D Mod.
Triple-lobe air/exhaust mixers called EVU could be fitted to reduce the helicopters IR signature. After mixing the exhaust with cool outside air they directed it upwards into the main rotor downwash, reducing exhaust gas temperature by 350-400 ®C (662-752 deg F). However, the mixers could only be fitted to aircraft built approximately from 1984 onwards which had vertically cut-off jetpipes.
Some measures were aimed at improving survivability. The fuel tanks were filled with explosion-suppression polyurethane foam, and extra valves were introduced in the hydraulic system to prevent total loss of hydraulic fluid in the event of damage. The tail rotor control rods were spaced wider apart to stop them from being shot away by a single round.
The Mi-24V / Mi-35 is known to have carried eight 9M114 ATGMs on the endplate racks and the outboard wing pylons. Multiple missile racks, increasing the number of ATGMs to 16, were tested successfully in 1986. The Hind-E also evolved into several experimental versions and avionics or weapons testbeds in the 1980s (Mi-24M, Mi-24N, Mi-24F, etc.) of which no details are available.