Defense Express’ Weekly Review: Satellite Images Indicate russian A-50s are Inoperable, putin Declares Readiness of Sarmat Missiles, CV9040 is the Deadliest IFV Against russians

A-50 of the russian Aerospace Forces / Open source illustrative photo
A-50 of the russian Aerospace Forces / Open source illustrative photo

Digest of Defense Express on the main events of the week

Satellite Images Indicate that russian A-50 Aircraft Are Inoperable

OSINT analyst MT Anderson published satellite images that show the poor condition of the A-50 aircraft. According to him, there were two A-50s at the airfield of the russian Aerospace Forces' air base in Akhtubinsk, Astrakhan Oblast of the russian federation. Additionally, there are probably four russian fifth-generation Su-57 fighters (NATO classification: Felon) at the Akhtubinsk airbase.

Read more: Chronicle of russia's Bloodiest War Crimes in Ukraine in 2023

Also, four Il-76 military transport aircraft are based there, which are not shown on the satellite images.

Rostec Wants to Resume Production of A‑50U AEW&C Systems But New Aircraft Won't Be Ready Any Soon, History Shows

Rostec, russia's state-owned arms industry conglomerate, has announced plans to resume production of A-50 airborne early warning and control systems.

A-50 of the russian Aerospace Forces, Defense Express
A-50 of the russian Aerospace Forces / Open source illustrative photo

Defense Express provides an assessment of the expected production rates. Let us examine the production chain and estimate the time required to manufacture a single A-50 or its modernized version, the A-50U.

Ukraine Downs Su-34 Fighter-Bomber, Air Force Commander Urges russian Pilots to Prepare for Potential Casualties

The Commander of the Ukrainian Air Force, Lieutenant General Mykola Oleshchuk stated on his Telegram channel, "Another Su-34 fighter-bomber is down in the eastern direction!"

"Therefore, I advise the occupiers to say goodbye to their loved ones before each sortie just in case. Because who knows if they will be lucky this time," he stated.

russian Su-34 fighter-bomber, Defense Express
russian Su-34 fighter-bomber / open source

Let us note that over the past few days, a dozen or so enemy planes have already been shot down, with 10 of them being Su-34 fighter-bombers.

putin Declares Readiness of Sarmat Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, New Wunderwaffe Not Named

During his speech at the Federal Assembly, putin touched upon the topic of russian weaponry.

In particular, a statement was made again that the serial Sarmat ICBMs is allegedly already in the military. Also, the Burevestnik nuclear-powered cruise missile and the Poseidon nuclear torpedo were mentioned again, the testing of which has supposedly been in the final stage for about a year. The leader of the russians also confirmed the use of the Zircon missile.

RS-28 Sarmat Intercontinental Ballistic Missile, Defense Express
RS-28 Sarmat Intercontinental Ballistic Missile / Open source illustrative photo

As for the new weaponry that putin enjoys boasting about in public appearances, it appears that the fantasy has come to an end: he could not come up with new names for the wunderwaffe.

French Mirage 2000D Fighter-Bomber Transfer to Ukraine Shrouded in Mystery

France has invested its own resources and adapted MiG-29 and Su-27 aircraft for AASM Hammer guided air-to-surface missiles. However, France asserts that there cannot even be a consideration of transferring specialized Mirage 2000D fighter-bombers to Ukraine.

French Mirage 2000D attack aircraft, Defense Express
French Mirage 2000D attack aircraft / Illustrative photo by Armée de l'Air

However, the "no" from the French Minister of Defense regarding the Mirage 2000D for Ukraine does not necessarily signify Paris's categorical refusal to provide such aircraft at the moment.

CV9040 is the Deadliest IFV Against russians: Soldiers of Ukrainian 21st Mech Brigade About the Swedish Combat Vehicle

The best qualities about the Combat Vehicle 90 is its firepower and level of protection it ensures to the crew. The Ukrainian forces also use their CV90s as armored recovery vehicles.

The servicemen of the 21st Mechanized Brigade of Ukrainian Armed Forces describe their overall experience working with this weapon as positive.

Ukrainian soldier on a CV9040, Defense Express
Ukrainian soldier on a CV9040 / Screengrab credit: Army TV – Ukrainian military channel

"First of all and most importantly, the armor and the gun. The armor is very robust, it withstood the frontal [hits by] Lancets, FPVs," says the deputy battalion commander of the 21st Brigade, call sign Drone.

Read more: Chronicle of the russian federation Crimes in Ukraine (January 2024)