Note: This aircraft is currently undergoing restoration. You can view the restoration progress by participating in the museum's Behind the Scenes Tour. Additional information about the aircraft's restoration is available on the Restoration Projects page.
The Soviet MiG-25 (NATO code-name "Foxbat") was a high-speed interceptor and reconnaissance aircraft. The aircraft entered service in 1970 and has a top speed of Mach 2.83, powerful radar, and could carry up to four air-to-air missiles.
The MiG-25's capabilities were not discovered until 1976 when Viktor Belenko, a Soviet MiG-25 pilot, defected to Japan. Subsequent analysis revealed a simple-yet-functional design with vacuum-tube electronics, two massive turbojet engines, and sparing use of advanced materials such as titanium.
A capable interceptor, the MiG-25 was widely exported by the Soviet Union. The first MiG-25s entered service with the Iraqi Air Force in 1980 during the Iran-Iraq War.
The aircraft on exhibit, a MiG-25RB, was found in 2003 by American forces buried in the sand near Al Taqaddum Airbase 250km west of Baghdad during the opening months of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The MiG-25 was buried to prevent its destruction on the ground by coalition aircraft. The aircraft was recovered incomplete--the wings could not be located and the vertical stabilizers were removed for transport. The aircraft arrived at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in 2006.
Armament: Four air-to-air missiles (two radar-guided AA-6 "Acrid" missiles, and two infrared-guided R-40T missiles). Engines: Two Tumansky R-15B-300 turbojets of approx. 22,500 lbs. thrust each with afterburner Maximum speed: Mach 2.83