Pilots in Western Military District complete main stage of Ladoga exercise

50 pilots practiced enemy detection and engagement in daytime and nighttime

Fighter pilots from Russia's Voronezh, Tver and Kursk regions and Republic of Karelia have completed the main stage of the Western Military District (WMD) fighter jet exercise, Ladoga-2016, over Lake Ladoga, WMD spokesman Col. Igor Muginov said on March 25.

"Throughout the week, Air Force and Air Defense pilots flew [Mikoyan] MiG-29SMT, MiG-31BM, [Sukhoi] Su-34, as well as various modifications of Su-27 aircraft to conduct live fire drills, guided missile launches, and several elements of aerial warfare. In addition, a rite of passage was held for the Su-27SM fighter aircraft which entered service in WMD in past weeks," Muginov told.

Around 50 fighter pilots practiced enemy detection, target acquisition and engagement both in daytime and nighttime, he said. "Air targets were launched from an altitude of over 10,000 meters, from Su-27 aircraft equipped with weapon stations. The air targets were aerial bombs in the form of a garland with luminescent elements," he said.

Over 100 air-to-air missiles and over 1,500 munitions for the fighters' cannon armament were used during the main stage of the exercise, the WMD spokesman said.

"Currently, the pilots and the engineering-technical staff are preparing to return to their air bases in the Kursk and Voronezh regions. Upon the aircraft's return to the bases, the WMD Air Force and Air Defense command will summarize results of the exercise and admit the young pilots to the mission of protecting Russian aerial boundaries," Muginov said.

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