Three Russian projects are among 37 foreign military technologies the Pentagon will evaluate in the next fiscal year, according to a Pentagon announcement on October 8. Heading the list is the M-31 supersonic sea skimming Target, a modification of the Zvezda Design Bureau’s Kh-31 anti-radar and anti-ship missile, known in NATO as the AS-13. Recently McDonnell Douglas completed the first launch and powered flight of the Target. The U.S. bought 4 of the missiles to be converted into Targets and has an option to buy up to 20. This year’s effort will be to look at an extended range version of the missile. The other two projects are related to military aviation. One is to evaluate a Russian process to coat jet engine compressor blades with titanium nitride to reduce the erosion on the blades — which are subject to intense heat and pressure. The other project will look at an advanced fabrication technology for fighter planes developed by the All-Russian Institute of Aviation.
With military procurement cut to the bone, Russian defense enterprises welcome new funds from any source, but not everyone in Russia is happy with the idea of the Americans getting their hands on the latest Russian military and space technology. There was an uproar when the Pentagon bought several Russian SA-10 surface-to-air missiles over the past two years. There was also a lengthy battle before Energomash was allowed to export its RD-120 space launch vehicle engine, to be used by a U.S. company in developing a new American space rocket.
Moscow Looks to Bury Baltic Archives.