Tag Archives: Royal Malaysian Air Force

Overview: Air Forces of Malaysia

Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF / Tentera Udara DiRaja Malaysia (TUDM)), Malaysian Army (Tentera Darat Malaysia (TDDM)), Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN; Tentera Laut DiRaja Malaysia ( TLDM)), status as of 15 January 2016
(© 2015 Airheadsfly.com. Featured image: A Royal Malaysian Air Force C-130 Hercules (Image © Elmer van Hest))

>>> Check out our continuing news stream on the Royal Malaysian Air Force

Active number of aircraft Air Forces of Malaysia: 259 – 271

  • 18x Sukhoi Su-30MKM multi-role fighters (TUDM)
  • 8x Boeing (McDonnell Douglas) F/A-18D multi-role fighters (TUDM)
  • 10x Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29N single-seat air-defence fighters. (TUDM)
  • 2x Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29NUB two-seat air-defence fighters. (TUDM)
  • 6x British Aerospace Hawk 108 advanced trainers and light attack aircraft (TUDM)
  • 13x British Aerospace Hawk 208 light attack aircraft (TUDM)
  • 10x Aermacchi MB 339AM jet trainer and light fighter aircraft (TUDM)
  • 8x Aermacchi MB 339CM jet trainer and light fighter aircraft (TUDM)
  • 1x Lockheed C-130MP Hercules maritime patrol and transport aircraft (TUDM)
  • 4x Beechcraft 200T Super King Air maritime patrol aircraft (TUDM)
  • 1x Boeing Business Jet 737-700 VIP transport aircraft (prime minister’s flight) (TUDM)
  • 1x Airbus A319CJ VIP transport aircraft (TUDM)
  • 2x Airbus A400M tactical transport aircraft
  • 10x Lockheed C-130H Hercules tactical airlifter (TUDM)
  • 4x Lockheed KC-130T tanker aircraft (TUDM); 2 are refurbished C-130MPs
  • 8x IPTN Indonesia (CASA / Airbus) CN235-220M tactical airlifters. Operate as the airlift for the 10 Paratrooper Brigade. (TUDM)
  • 1x Bombardier Global Express 700 VIP transport aircraft (TUDM)
  • 1x Dassault Falcon 900B VIP transport aircraft (TUDM)
  • 1x Fokker F.28-1000 Fellowship VIP transport aircraft (TUDM)
  • 10x Cessna 402 utility aircraft (TUDM)
  • 30x Pilatus PC-7 trainers (TUDM); might be partly retired
  • 17x Pilatus PC-7 Mk II trainers(TUDM)
  • 20x SME Aero Tiga MD3-160 primary trainers (TUDM)
  • 12x Eurocopter EC725 Caracal transport and CSAR helicopters (TUDM)
  • 17 – 29x Agusta (Sikorsky) S61A Nuri transport and SAR helicopters (TUDM)
  • 2x Agusta (Sikorsky) AS-61N VIP helicopters (TUDM)
  • 2x Sikorsky S-70 Black Hawk VIP helicopters (TUDM)
  • 4x Sikorsky S-70A Black Hawk tactical helicopters. (TUDM) Gift by Brunei
  • 1x Agusta A109C utility helicopter (TUDM)
  • 10x Agusta A109LOH utility and armed support helicopter (TD)
  • 6x Westland Super Lynx 300 anti-submarine and anti-ship helicopters (TLDM)
  • 6x Eurocopter (Airbus Helicopters) AS 555SN Fennec surveillance and anti-submarine helicopters (TLDM)
  • 13x Aérospatiale Alouette III training and utility helicopters (TUDM)

Aircraft ordered / to be received: 7

Aircraft retired in 2014

  • 4x Northrop F-5E Tiger fighter-bomber (operational reserve retired in December 2014) with another 12 already in semi-reserve (TUDM)
  • 2x Northrop RF-5E Tigereye tactical reconnaissance aircraft (operational reserve retired in December 2014) (TUDM)

Airbases: 10

(Source: Malaysia Armed Forces)

    • Alor Setar / Sultan Abdul Halim RMAF Base
      • PC-7 / PC-7 Mk II (1 Flight Training Centre / Flight Instructor School)
      • Alouette III (2 Flight Training Centre)
    • Butterworth RMAF Base
      • 8 F/A-18D Hornet (18 Squadron)
      • S-61A Nuri (3 Squadron)
      • Retired December 2014: 16 F-5E / 2 RF-5E (Reserve / Tactical Air Recce)
    • Gong Kedak RMAF Base
      • 18 Sukhoi Su-30MKM (11 Squadron)
    • Lumut Malaysian Naval Base
      • Super Lynx 300 (501 Squadron)
      • AS555SN Fennec (502 Squadron)
    • Sultan Ahmed Shah / Kuantan (Pahang) RMAF Base
      • 10 MiG-29N / 2 MiG-29NUB (17 & 19 Squadron)
      • Hawk 108 / 208 (6 Squadron)
      • 18 MB 339 (3 Flight Training Centre)
      • 8 EC725 Caracal (unit unknown)
    • Simpang / Kuala Lumpur RMAF Base
      • S61A Nuri (10 Squadron)
      • 2 AS61N Nuri (10 Squadron)
      • 2 S70A (10 Squadron)
      • 20 MD3-160 (1 Flight Training Centre Flight)
      • Plus: Police Air Wing (PDRM) that includes Eurocopter AS355s, Cessna 172, Cessna 206 and Cessna 208
    • Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah / Subang / Kuala Lumpur RMAF Base
      • F28-1000, Falcon 900, Bombardier Global Express 700, Boeing 737-700 BBJ, Airbus A319CJ (2 Squadron)
      • 2 A400M (to be 4 aircraft in 2016) (2 Squadron)
      • 4 Beechcraft 200T (16 Squadron)
      • 4 C-130H / 1 C-130MP / 4 KC-130T (20 Squadron)
      • 7 CN235-220M/VIP (1 Squadron)
      • Malaysia Fire and Rescue Department (“Bomba”): Mil-17 / Mil 171, Agusta A109E, AgustaWestland AW319
      • Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (APMM): Aérospatiale (Airbus Helicotpers) AS365N3 Dauphin, Bombardier CL-415MP, AgustaWestland AW319
    • Kluang Malaysian Army Base
      • 10 A109LOH (881 Squadron). To be partly or fully deployed or relocated to Labuan RMAF Base to fight insurgency.
    • Kuching RMAF Base
      • 1 CN235-220M (1 Squadron Det.)
      • Hawk 108 / 208 (6 Squadron)
      • S61A Nuri (7 Squadron)
    • Labuan RMAF Base
      • 6 C-130H Hercules (14 Squadron)
      • Hawk 108 / 208 (15 Squadron). Recently relocated from Butterworth RMAF Base to fight insurgency.
      • 4 EC725 Caracal (5 Squadron)

    >>> Check out our continuing news stream on the Royal Malaysian Air Force

    Shooting Range (aka very nice shots)

    The first Malaysian Air Force A400M in flight on 30 January 2015 (Image © Airbus)
    The first Malaysian Air Force A400M in flight on 30 January 2015 (Image © Airbus)

    Royal Malaysian Air Force MiG-29N (Image (CC) Peter Gronemann)
    Royal Malaysian Air Force MiG-29N (Image (CC) Peter Gronemann)

    A Royal Malaysia Air Force F/A-18D Hornet (Image (CC) Juanchuan)
    A Royal Malaysia Air Force F/A-18D Hornet (Image (CC) Juanchuan)

    A Royal Malaysian Navy Super Lynx helicopter prepares to land on the flight deck of the littoral combat ship USS Freedom (LCS 1) in the South China Sea during landing qualifications on 18 June 2013 (Image © MC1 Cassandra Thompson / US Navy)
    A Royal Malaysian Navy Super Lynx helicopter prepares to land on the flight deck of the littoral combat ship USS Freedom (LCS 1) in the South China Sea during landing qualifications on 18 June 2013 (Image © MC1 Cassandra Thompson / US Navy)

    A Royal Malaysian Air Force C-130 Hercules (Image © Elmer van Hest)
    A Royal Malaysian Air Force C-130 Hercules (Image © Elmer van Hest)

    1 Squadron flies the CN235-220M built under license of CASA (Airbus) by IPTN Indonesia (Image © Royal Malaysian Air Force)
    1 Squadron flies the CN235-220M built under license of CASA (Airbus) by IPTN Indonesia (Image © Royal Malaysian Air Force)

    According to the Malaysian Ministry of Defence all F-5Es and RF-5Es will be retired in December 2014 (Image © National Museum of the US Air Force)
    According to the Malaysian Ministry of Defence all F-5Es and RF-5Es will be retired in December 2014 (Image © National Museum of the US Air Force)

    “T-129 perfect outsider in Malaysian attack chopper deal”

    The Turkish Aerospace Industries / AgustaWestland T-129 ATAK might be the unexpected outsider to win the Malaysian Army deal for six attack helicopters. While many experts bet on the AH-64D Apache, the Bell AH-1Z Viper or the Airbus Helicopters EC665 Tigre to make it to the Asian country, the T-129 might just be what Kuala Lumpur seeks to supplement its AgustaWestland AW109s it is currently arming.

    Click here for more Airheadsfly.com news items from Malaysia

    The TAI T-129 ATAK had the distinction of being the only helicopter in the air display during the 2014 Farnborough airshow.  (Image © Dennis Spronk)
    Featured image: The TAI T-129 ATAK had the distinction of being the only helicopter in the air display during the 2014 Farnborough airshow. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

    “The armed forces are to acquire six attack helicopters to reinforce operations in Esszone, as soon as possible,” Deputy Defence Minister Abdul Rahim Bakri announced on 19 December 2014. The Esszone is the Eastern Sabah Safety Zone (Esszone): an area covering the districts of Kudat, Kota Marudu, Pitas, Beluran, Sandakan, Kinabatangan, Lahad Datu, Kunak, Semporna and Tawau. It is located on the island of Kalimantan that Malaysia shares with Indonesia and Brunei. Armed rebel groups from the Sulu Archipelago invaded the eastern part of it in March 2013.

    Miniguns
    As an intermediate solution to beef up its fighting capabilities Malaysia’s Army Air Corps are mounting 10 newly purchased General Electric M134D Hybrid Miniguns on its ten AgustaWestland AW109s. By not ordering a 11th of these Gatling-type guns, the faith of the 11th AW109LOH the Army received might have been sealed. This chopper was badly damaged during a crash on 30 January 2014. The AW109s currently make up the complete air fleet of the army.

    A pananoramic shot of the T-129 at Farnborough. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
    A pananoramic shot of the T-129 at Farnborough. (Image © Elmer van Hest)

    Labuan Airbase
    Officially the AW109s are based at Kluang, but armed with the Miniguns some are or will operate out of Labuan Airbase at Sabah. The Royal Malaysian Air Force’s 15 Squadron “Panther” – flying Hawk Mk108 and Mk208s Hawk Mk208 – has already relocated from Butterworth Airbase to Labuan on 7 November. Moreover the Defence Ministry is aiming at basing its top F/A-18s and Su-30MKMs at Labuan as well, likely in smaller rotating detachments of 4 to 8 aircraft at a time. Labuan itself already was home to 5 Squadron flying the Agusta S61A-4 Nuri (licensed version of the Westland Sea King) helicopter and 14 Squadron with the C-130H30 Hercules tactical airlifter.

    Best cards
    Whether or not Malaysia will choose the T-129 will very much depends on the costs the manufacturer wishes to put on the invoice. With the current almost all European chopper fleet in the Malaysian armed forces, the Airbus Tigre initially seems to have the best cards on the table. But we at Airheadsfly.com won’t be surprised if Kuala Lumpur decides in favour of probably the perfect outsider in this bid: the Italian designed but Turkish redefined TAI T-129 ATAK.

    © 2014 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger

    >>> See our feature T-129 ATAK makes its mark

    A pair of Turkish Army T129As during the development phase back in 2012 (Image © Turkish Aerospace Industries)
    A pair of Turkish Army T129As during the development phase back in 2012 (Image © Turkish Aerospace Industries)