SU-30MKM Modernizirovannyi Kommercheskiy Malaysia












Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) been in the past procure both Western and Eastern bloc combat aircraft.   Currently, they equipped themselesves with MIG-29, F/A-18D, Hawk, MB-339C, and the Sukhoi SU-30MKM. The SU-30MKM has the same airframe, same engines with thrust vector control (TVC), and an advanced digital fly-by-wire system as the Indian SU-30MKI. The MKM version differs from the MKI mainly in the composition of the on board avionics. Thales supplies the Head-up display (HUD), navigational forward-looking IR system NAVFLIR and the Damocles targeting pod. The aircraft carries missile approach warning sensor (MAWS) and laser warning sensor (LWS) manufactured by Avitronics (South Africa). It can carry up to 8,000 kg/ 17,650 lb of weapons and payloads over 700 nmi unrefueled combat radius.

Weapon system can be seen on the illustrations and chart as shown:

Data from Irkut Corporation,[12] and Sukhoi[13]

General characteristics


  • Maximum speed: Mach 2.0[12] (2,100 km/h or 1,300 mph) at altitude; 1,350 km/h, 839 mph near ground level[13]
  • Range: 3,000 km (1,620 nmi) at altitude; (1,270 km, 690 nmi near ground level; with no external fuel tanks)
  • Endurance: 3.75 hrs (up to 10 hrs with in-flight refuelling)
  • Service ceiling: 17,300 m (56,800 ft)
  • Rate of climb: >300 m/s (>45,275 ft/min)
  • Thrust/weight: 0.96
  • Maximum g-load: +9 g
































RMAF currently have 18 combat ready SU-30MKM base on the northeastern coast on Gong Kedak Airbase. WIth the long range capability of the SU-30MKM we can see the reason Malaysian chose this aircraft and also showing its geographical locality since Malaysia is one of the countries that claim sovereignty of the Spratly islands.( Also claimed by China, Philippines and Vietnam) The range of the SU30MKM makes this aircraft platform suitable for the mission. The current aircraft camouflage scheme comes in the superiority grey as shown on the illustration diagrams below. All 18 aircraft spot the same camouflage scheme with different bord number 1-18



















We were privileged to have been able to photograph and videograph this superb aircraft in Malaysia’s biannual airshow LIMA 2015. These pictorial illustration shows a good representation of the SU-30MKM’s ability and performance

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A video of the RMAF in action including a short footage of the SU-30MKM

These are the detail walkaround shots of the RMAF SU-30MKM

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Special thanks to my Asian photographer C.B. Lee and C.N. Lau

Article by Dave Chng

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