TechFrench Mirage 2000 fighters to bolster Ukraine's air defense

French Mirage 2000 fighters to bolster Ukraine's air defense

Mirage 2000 in the colors of the French Air Force
Mirage 2000 in the colors of the French Air Force
Images source: © Public domain | Staff Sgt. Michael B. Keller
Paweł Maziarz

6:01 AM EDT, June 10, 2024

France's president, Emmanuel Macron, announced the delivery of Mirage 2000-5 fighters to Ukraine. It is still unknown how many such aircraft will appear over Ukraine. However, "La Tribune" reports that France can provide only a tiny number of Mirage 2000-5, as it has a limited arsenal.

The announcement of the delivery of Mirage 2000-5 fighters to Ukraine has garnered considerable attention. Alongside the previously promised F-16 fighters, the French planes are expected to help Ukraine defend its land and airspace more effectively against the Russians.

However, neither the number of aircraft being prepared for delivery nor the timing of their transfer to the front has been confirmed. Macron only mentioned that pilot training could begin as early as summer.

France doesn't have many Mirage 2000-5 fighters

The weekly "La Tribune" reports that France can deliver no more than six Mirage 2000-5 fighters to Ukraine, and the rest must be sourced from other countries.

The French Air Force has only 26 Mirage 2000-5 aircraft. The remaining units are older versions such as the Mirage 2000B, Mirage 2000C, Mirage 2000D, and Mirage 2000N. If Paris wants to maintain at least one squadron (20 aircraft) at home, it cannot deliver more than six fighters.

The French Weekly believes Ukraine could receive 12 Mirage 2000-5 aircraft. Qatar and Taiwan also use similar models.

What does the Mirage 2000-5 fighter offer?

The Mirage 2000 is a French multi-role fighter aircraft produced in various modifications. The Mirage 2000-5 is a highly modernized multi-role version (in France, it is designated Mirage 2000-5F).

The Mirage 2000-5 has a length of over 50 feet, a height of nearly 20 feet, and a wingspan of 30 feet. The design is equipped with a twin-engine afterburner SNECMA M-53, allowing it to reach a top speed of Mach 2.35. The aircraft's maximum altitude is 65,000 feet, with a range of 2,400 miles.

The Mirage 2000-5 uses a new suspension arrangement. The fighter can carry air-to-air missiles (including MBDA MICA IR/RF), air-to-ground missiles, and bombs. Additional equipment includes the Sabre electronic warfare system (WRE) and flare dispensers designed to enhance the aircraft's safety by misleading opponents.

Mirage 2000-5 of the Hellenic Air Force
Mirage 2000-5 of the Hellenic Air Force© Creative Commons | stefg74
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