The Mikoyan MiG-31BM high-altitude fighter-interceptors of the Kamchatka air base of separate mixed aviation regiment of the Pacific Fleet naval aviation, during the flight and tactical exercises, practised intercepting mock intruder of the airspace of the Russian Federation. In cooperation with ground-based radio units, they successfully detected and classified targets as well as conducted electronic launches of air-to-air missiles. During the exercises, the MiG-31BM also practised the redeployment to the airfield in the Chukotka Autonomous District.
After modernisation, Russia is to deploy an additional MiG-31 squadron on the Kamchatka peninsula. The aircraft will be integrated into the 317th Mixed Aviation Regiment of the Pacific Fleet and will operate from the Yelizovo Air Base (PKC) situated along the southern coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula. The regiment currently operates a squadron of 12 MiG-31B and MiG-31BS variants, two squadrons of Ka-27 anti-submarine warfare (ASW) helicopters, a squadron of Il-38 ASW aircraft, as well as unmanned aerial vehicles, small transport aircraft, and other helicopters.
Kamchatka houses the nuclear capabilities of the Russian Pacific Fleet. With their range and speed, interceptors will be able to control the space from the North Pole to the south-eastern borders of the country. Additionally to the frequent interceptions between Russia and the United States over the Bering Sea, where the two countries are facing each other, South Korea, Japan and China have intensified their territorial defense doctrine, leading to frequent incidents over the Pacific Ocean.
The upgraded MiG-31BM (NATO reporting name: Foxhound) is designated to intercept air targets at long ranges inaccessible for strikes by standard fighter jets. The interceptors of this type are capable of providing network-centric combat control while operating with other aircraft. The MiG-31BM is furnished with a phased array radar. The fighters of this type can employ R-33 long-range air-to-air missiles and R-73 short-range air-launched weapons. Now able to reach a top speed exceeding Mach 2.8, it will be capable of intercepting fighter jets, cruise and hypersonic missiles.