FGUP Raduga is preparing for Kh-59MK air-to-surface missile firing trials following the completion of ground tests. The missile is a derivative of the Kh-59M, intended for export versions of the Sukhoi Su-30MK.

Raduga, based at Dubna, near Moscow, is developing two versions of the missile - one fitted with an inertial guidance system and television sensor for terminal guidance, and a variant with an active radar seeker.

The latter is intended for Chinese navy Su-30MKK Series IIIs. The 930kg (2,050lb), 5.7m- (18.7ft-) long weapon is powered by the NPO Saturn 36MT turbofan and will have a range against large ships of 285km (150nm) and 145km against smaller vessels, such as patrol boats. The missile also has redesigned canards and a 320kg warhead. Initial targeting is via the Su-30MKK's radar operating in surface mapping mode. The missile's radar is activated 15-25km before impact.

The longer ranges are achieved by fitting additional fuel tanks in the rear fuselage in place of the boost motor carried by the TV-guided variant.

Raduga says the radar-guided Kh-59MK can only attack high-contrast seaborne targets with radar cross-sections greater than 300m2 (3,230ft2). The company is considering further range increases and an improved sensitivity seeker for use against ground targets.

Russia is only interested in the TV-guided version, intended for use against ground targets with a 110-130km-range, to arm upgraded Suhoi Su-24MFencers. Target co-ordinates are downloaded to the missile before launch for the inertial-guidance phase. The launch aircraft carries the APK-9 Ovod targeting pod which has a datalink for terminal guidance.

Raduga is also working on an upgraded variant of the Kh-58E export anti-radiation missile.

Source: Flight International