MOSCOW, November 12. /TASS/. Pilots of the 279th separate shipborne fighter air regiment of the Northern Fleet’s naval aviation will start training flights at the NITKA land-based aircraft carrier simulator near the town of Saky in Crimea in the third ten-day period of November, a source in the regional defense circles told TASS on Tuesday.
"Two Su-33 fighters and one Su-25UTG plane will make flights from their permanent aerodrome to Crimea at the end of this - at the beginning of next week. The exact timeframe depends on weather conditions along the flight route. After that, the pilots will start practicing take-offs and landings at the NITKA facility," the source said.
It was reported earlier that pilots of the 100th separate shipborne fighter air regiment of the Northern Fleet’s naval aviation who fly MiG-29K/MiG-29KUB fighters had undergone training at the ground-based carrier simulator in Crimea. They underwent training at the simulated aircraft carrier in Saky for the first time. Before that, only planes of the 279th separate shipborne fighter air regiment flew there.
The aircraft of the two air regiments took part in the long-distance deployment of Russia’s sole aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov to the Syrian coasts, which was completed in February 2017.
According to the source, after training exercises with pilots of the 279th separate shipborne fighter air regiment are over, repair work will begin at the NITKA simulator, which will be carried out by the Zvyozdochka Ship Repair Center (part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation).
The NITKA carrier simulator in Saky on the Crimean Peninsula is designated for practicing deck-based aircraft’s take-offs and landings. The simulator is an airfield with a steel ship deck equipped with a ski-jump and arresting gear. The airfield is similar by its dimensions to the flight deck of Russia’s sole heavy aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov.