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Mikoyan Gurevitch MiG-21

The MiG-21 jet fighter was a continuation of Soviet jet fighters, starting with the subsonic MiG-15 and MiG-17, and the supersonic MiG-19. A number of experimental Mach 2 Soviet designs were based on nose intakes with either swept-back wings, such as the Sukhoi Su-7, or tailed deltas, of which the MiG-21 would be the most successful. The MiG-21 was the first successful Soviet aircraft combining fighter and interceptor characteristics in a single aircraft. It was a lightweight fighter, achieving Mach 2 with a relatively low-powered afterburning turbojet.

Some 50 countries over four continents have flown the MiG-21, and it still serves many nations a half-century after its maiden flight. The fighter made aviation records. At least by name, it is the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft in aviation history and the most-produced combat aircraft since the Korean War, and it had the longest production run of a combat aircraft (1959-1985).

Mikoyan Gurevitch MiG-21 Specifications

  • Built:
    Original construction in 1959, former Soviet Union
  • Engine:
    Tumansky R1 1F-300 afterburning jet engine
  • Thrust: 12,650 lbs
  • Armament:
    1x 30 mm NR-30 cannon
    2x K-13 or K13A (R-3S) anti-aircraft missles or
    2x 500 lb bombs
  • Length: 51’8″
  • Height: 13’5″
  • Wingspan: 23’6″
  • Max Weight: 15,650 lbs
  • Service Ceiling: 62,335 ft
  • Max Speed: 1,385 mph (Mach 2.05)
  • Rate of Climb: 46,250 ft/min
Mikoyan Gurevitch MiG-21 diagrams