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New releases Jets in There were some bugs to work out: the prototype went into an uncontrolled dive on 17 March and cratered into the ground at high speed, killing Ivaschchenko, who never had time to get out. Despite this tragedy, by that time the second prototype was ready, and trials continued without a lapse. Two pre-production aircraft, fitted out to the tactical fighter configuration, were built and flown in , the same year the type was assigned the service designation of "MiG". It was ordered into production before trials were complete, with the first production machines rolled out in They featured larger airbrakes, an updated avionics suite, and an electrical engine self-starting system, though this last may have been featured on the prototypes as well.

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A new ejection seat was introduced into production in , providing a face screen, leg restraints, and stabilizers to keep the seat from tumbling. A rear-view mirror was also added, fitted on top of the canopy. Work had been done on such an item for the MiG, but it proved trickier than it sounds, suffering problems such as icing up at high altitude; no production MiG ever had such an item. Further enlarged airbrakes were introduced as well. A prototype of a MiG with the VK-1F -- this aircraft being an odd hybrid of a MiGbis forward fuselage; wings and tail taken from an early MiG prototype; and a new rear fuselage with the VK-1F engine -- was first flown on 29 September , with test pilot A.

Chernoborov at the controls. The afterburning MiG was very similar to the "Fresco-A", the only major external differences being a variable exhaust that was not hidden in the fuselage, and once again modified airbrakes. While level speed showed little improvement in afterburner, climb rate and top ceiling were greatly improved. The type was ordered into production as the "MiGF" in and entered operational service in Improvements were added to the MiGF during the course of production, such as an SRD-1 radar gunsight -- identifiable by a small strakelike antenna on top of the nose -- plus changes in engine and fuel systems.

The millimeter cannon was deleted, though the two millimeter cannon were retained.


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After first-line service life, MiGFs were used in the close-support role, being fitted with an extra pylon inboard on each wing to carry an unguided rocket pod. Such conversions were given the designation of "MiGAS".

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As with MiGbis fighter-bomber conversions, they were really only an interim solution. A single "SP-2" prototype was flown in with the single-antenna "Korshun Kite Hawk " radar, which was an improved version of the Toriy radar tested in the MiGbis. The radar arrangement was much the same as it had been for the MiGbis, though instead of retaining the millimeter cannon and dumping the millimeter cannon, the MiG testbed retained the millimeter cannon and dumped the millimeter cannon.

The results of this entire exercise were much the same as they had been for the Toriy-equipped MiGbis: the Korshun radar was too complicated to use, and it didn't work worth a damn. This particular aircraft was retained for further trials use. However, as mentioned, trials of the Izumrud RP-1 radar with the MiGbis had gone well, with five prototypes of a MiG interceptor featuring the RP-1 radar built and flown in The installation was much like that for the MiGbis, with the search radar antenna in a "fat lip" installation at the top of the intake, and the tracking radar antenna in a radome on the intake splitter.

The cockpit and canopy were modified to accommodate the radar scope, and the millimeter cannon was replaced with an NR cannon, giving a total armament of three millimeter cannon, with rounds per gun. Trials also going well, the interceptor variant was ordered into production as the "MiGP". In service, a MiGP was guided to a target under strict ground control, with the pilot performing the terminal attack using the RP-1 system; it didn't have the range or sophistication to allow the pilot to hunt a target on his own.

Apparently the reliability of the Izumrud radar in service was poor, though that was generally true everywhere in that period for complicated aircraft systems such as radar. Production machines featured variation in armament fit, with some aircraft having only two millimeter cannon, while some others had the standard MiG "Fresco-A" armament of one millimeter and two millimeter cannon. The MiGP was the first Soviet radar-equipped single-seat fighter to go into full service. It doesn't appear to have been used by the VVS in any numbers, if at all. This machine looked like a MiG with a Sabre nose.

The production issues were worked out, leading to the construction of a prototype of a MiGP with a VK-1F afterburning engine, this machine performing its first flight on 8 August with Georghiy A. Sedov at the controls.

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On the whole, however, the modifications were regarded as satisfactory, and the variant went into production in as the "MiGPF". Late production MiGPFs had the improved RP-5 Izumrud 2 radar, with greater range and a larger radome on the centerline intake bulkhead. In the mids, some MiGPFs were fitted with a Gorizont-1 Horizon-1 radio command link for directing ground-controlled intercepts. The cannon were removed. It amounted to little more than a stepping-stone to better AAMs.

The "Fresco-E" was used mostly for training pilots to fly more advanced interceptors.

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Many were trivial, but some were fairly drastic. The most unarguably drastic modification was the "izdeliye SN" prototype. Following the encouraging experiments with the SU MiG fitted with pivoting armament, a MiG "Fresco-A" was fitted with a "solid" nose containing three pivoting AM millimeter cannon and an engine intake forward of each wingroot. The cannon could pivot up about There was one cannon on a pivot on the right side of the nose, and two cannon mounted top-bottom on a common pivot on the left side of the nose. The pivoting cannon could be used for both strafing and air combat, under control of a special gunsight.

The SN was tested in , and ran into a problem: when the cannon were fired upward, the nose pitched down, and when they were fired downward, the nose pitched up. Accuracy of the weapons was poor. That shouldn't have been a surprise in hindsight, but apparently the good results obtained with the trials on the MiG, where the two cannon weren't mounted so far from the center of gravity, bred a degree of complacency.

The greater weight of the SN also degraded performance, and the intake arrangement led to engine surge. Although some of the test pilots liked the concept and thought it deserved further development, their views didn't carry the day, and the SN was abandoned. By the early s, Soviet jet engine design had progressed beyond the era of leveraging off of foreign technology. The engine design bureau under Alexander Mikulin had developed new axial-flow engines with improved power-to-weight ratios and greater fuel economy, and the Mikoyan OKB was considering their application to new fighters with higher performance.

As an experiment, a MiG "Fresco-A" prototype was fitted with twin AM-5 axial-flow turbojets, mounted side-by-side in a new "fat" rear fuselage; it was otherwise hard to tell from a stock MiG The compact engines permitted a greater internal fuel capacity.


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The machine was also fitted with a brake parachute. The aircraft was mainly intended as an engine demonstrator and was designated "izdeliye SM-1" or "I", with first flight in the spring of The AM-5 was a non-afterburning engine, providing The AM-5 engines were later swapped with lighter and more powerful, but still non-afterburning, "AM-5A" engines, providing An afterburning "AM-5F" engine was developed, but it was never fitted to the I The I had better range and performance than a standard MiGF; it was capable of breaking Mach 1 in level flight.

The engines were unreliable -- with engine failures abruptly cutting off cabin pressurization and causing the pilot's nose to start pouring out blood -- but the engines represented a new generation of technology, and some difficulties were not surprising. The I didn't go into production, though the concept wasn't discarded by any means, as discussed later.

The Chinese obtained plans for the MiGF "Fresco-C" day fighter in , along with two completed pattern aircraft, 15 knockdown kits, and parts for ten aircraft. The first Chinese-built MiGF, produced by the Shenyang factory, performed its initial flight on 19 July with test pilot Wu Keming at the controls.

One was actually trialed as a torpedo bomber, but not surprisingly the concept never made it into formal service. Plans were obtained in , but the country was in turmoil in the early s and the first Chinese-built MiGPF, produced at the Chengdu factory, didn't fly until , when the type was basically obsolete. It was given the designation of "J-5A F-5A ". A total of J-5s and J-5As was built to end of production in All the nose armament was deleted, with the aircraft carrying a single NR cannon in a belly pack.

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First flight was in , with the type built at the Chengdu factory. About 1, JJ-5s were built to end of production in , with the type exported to a number of countries. Some sources have referred to it as a "MiGUTI" -- but formally speaking, there never was an aircraft with that designation.


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The first four aircraft were assembled from Soviet-supplied knockdown kits, with full production following in The Mielec plant built a total of LIM-5s. The first "LIM-5P", as it was designated, was rolled out in , and a total of was built in all. Some were exported, with 40 sent to East Germany and much smaller batches sent elsewhere. It could carry twin rocket pods, in addition to its standard MiGF built-in cannon armament.