Apparently the Mil Mi-28 Havoc attack helicopter’s design was not as successful as the Ka-50 Hokum

The Mi-28 (Western reporting name Havoc) is a Russian attack helicopter. The first of four prototypes made its maiden flight on 10 November 1982. The third and fourth prototypes were completed to Mi-28A standard with uprated engines exhausting via downward-inclined diffusers. The fourth production-standard prototype also had a moving, gyro-stabilized, undernose electro-optical sensor turret and wing-tip pods carrying electronic counter measures and chaff dispensers.

To meet a Russian Army requirement for a new attack helicopter the Mi-28 competed against a Ka-50. During the trials the Mi-28 was reportedly defeated by the Ka-50. However Mil received an order for a small batch of the Mi-28 helicopters, most likely in order to prevent the manufacturer from going bankrupt.

Currently a total of 24 improved Mi-28N attack helicopters are in service with the Russian Army. The type is being actively marketed for export customers. Some sources report that the Mi-28 is in service with Kenya. In 2013 Iraq ordered a first batch of 10 Mi-28NE helicopters. A total of 19 helicopters were scheduled to be delivered to Iraq until 2016. Algeria ordered 42 of Mi-28NE gunships.

The Mi-28 has a conventional helicopter gunship layout with the pilot in the rear and gunner in front. It is armed with a 30 mm trainable cannon housed in a turret under the nose. Twin 150-round ammunition boxes are co-mounted to traverse, elevate and depress together with the gun. So a total of 300 rounds of ammunition are carried for the main gun. The gun is identical to that of Russian BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicle and uses the same ammunition. Each ammunition box can be loaded with different types of ammunition. This gunship can also carry two pods with 80 mm unguided rockets and 16 anti-tank guided missiles.

For anti-armor missions the Mi-28 can be equipped with Ataka, Shturm-V or Vikhr anti-tank guided missiles. The Ataka missiles are radar guided have range of up to 8-10 km and penetrate 950 mm of steel armor behind Explosive Reactive Armor (ERA). The Shturm-V missiles have a range of up to 7 km and penetrate up to 800 mm of steel armor behind ERA. The Vikhr laser-guided missiles have a range of up to 10 km and penetrate up to 1 000 mm or steel armor behind ERA. These missiles are capable of destroying most main battle tanks.

Crew compartment is well armored. It withstands hits from 12.7 mm armor-piercing rounds and 20 mm HE-FRAG rounds. It is claimed that this helicopter can not be defeated by a single short-range anti-aircraft missile.

The Mi-28’s cockpit is compatible with night vision goggles; the pilot has a head-up display and one CRT on which TV imaging can be displayed. The primary sensor package comprises the optical sights and laser rangefinder in an undernose turret. The crew are protected by energy-absorbing seats and an emergency escape system allows the crew to escape safely by parachute. A hatch in the port side, to the rear of the wing, gives access to the avionics compartment and a space large enough to accommodate two or three passengers during a combat rescue.


Mi-28A is an initial version. It never reached full-scale production.

Mi-28N is an improved version with night attack capability. Letter “N” in the designated stands for “Night”. In 1994 Russian army funding allowed modification of the first Mi-28A prototype to Mi-28N configuration. This introduced a mast-mounted MMW Kinzhal V or Arbalet radar, composite rotor blades, forward-looking infra-red, an electronic flight instrumentation system cockpit, improved armament options including Igla-V air-to-air missiles and uprated TV3-117VK engines. The Mi-28N made its first flight in April 1997. Production commenced in 2005. Deliveries of the Mi-28N attack helicopters to the Russian Army began in 2006. However officially the type was adopted by the Russian Army only in 2013. So the Mi-28N was a definitive production version.

Mi-28NE Night Hunter is an export version of the Mi-28N. Iraq ordered 19 of these attack helicopters. Algeria ordered 42 of these helicopters.

Mi-28NM is the latest version. Development of this helicopter began in 2008. It has a lot of differences comparing with the Mi-28N. This version is fully integrated into the data transfer system by all channels, including video, target position and other data. Also it is integrated with UAVs.

Mi-28UB is a combat trainer helicopter. It is based on the Mi-28N. It can be used for pilot training, however this helicopter retains full combat capability.

Mil also proposes a naval variant of the Mi-28 for support of amphibious naval assaults.