2016 Event Review

Astana, Republic of Kasakhstan June 2-5, 2016
Location: Astana, Republic of Kasakhstan
Admission: Free from June 4-5, (2-3. open to trade visitors only)

Parking: Free
Value:Very Good
Rating out of 10: Not an air show

RNLAF AH-64D Apache Solo Display

The fourth International Armament and Military-Technical Equipment Exhibition, KADEX-2016, was held on June 2 to 5,  2016 in the beautiful city and emerging metropolis, Astana, which is the capital of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is the ninth largest and the biggest landlocked country on earth. The event took place in the military section of the Astana International Airport.

The exhibition was officially opened on 02nd of June under presence of the president of the Republic of Kasakhstan Nursultan Nasarbajew and the Minister of Defence, Imangali Tasmagambetov, with a amazing night show. The opening ceremony was made by the world famous stunt group "NOMAD" under their guidance of the famous stuntman Zhayadarbeka Kunguzhinova. The opening ceremony told the story of the Republic of Kazakhstan, when they were still nomads to the contemporary. The end of the show showed a hostage rescue, included helicopters, and combat vehicles ant tanks including blank ammunition firing. The opening night includes also a four ship formation of Su-27 will be headed by the commander of the Air Defence Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Major General Dauren Kosanov. These flights are in addition to the aerobatic capabilities of aircraft show the audience the successful and full development of Kazakh pilots of modern aircraft.

This year's edition of KADEX 2016 presented also a large number of domestic companies. The group of JSC "NC Kazakhstan Engineering" presented 20 companies, which presented 42 exhibitors of military and civil equipment. In summary about 100 domestic companies represented the power and knowledge of the Kazakhstan industry. For the first time, the armoured vehicle "Arlan", which is produced by "NC Kazakhstan Engineering", was official presented to the public. "Arlan" has no comparable today in the Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan. JSC NC (National Company) Kazakhstan Engineering presented their wide range of products for Air Forces, Army and Navy.

The Russian company "UralVagonZavod" presented a modernized T-72 Main Battle Tank from their update program, a third generation T-90S Main Battle Tank next to the Fire Support Combat Vehicles "Terminator" and "Terminator 2". LLP Eurocopter Kazakhstan Engineering has exposed the flight simulator for EC-145, which is the only one in Central Asia. In addition, for the first time will be hold to demonstrate the possibilities of a new aviation-technical center, which has no comparable in Central Asia.

As surprise for the visitors was the first public presentation of the Chinese built unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) Wing-Loong. China's Chengdu Aircraft Industry (Group) Company (CAC) has sold two of them to the Kazakhstan Air Defence Forces in a move that marks the company's first such sale in Central Asia. The Wing-Loong weighs about 1.1 tones, is powered by a Rotax 914 engine - just like the MQ-1 - and has an endurance of about 20 hour.

The Belarus 558 Repair (558 ARZ) plant from Baranovicsi and the Kazakhstan Defence Industry (LLP) has made some joint effort to modernize the Kazakhstan Sukhoi Su-25 attack aircraft fleet under lead of the 558 ARZ. Upgrades includes glass cockpit, two MFI-10 head down displays, a new targeting system, new weapon carriage capabilities and new aircraft survivability with the integration of a Satellite jamming suite housed on two wing mounted pods. The program started earlier in 2016 and the first aircraft is expected to be delivered for the first flight trials in mid-2017.

At the Antonov booth there was a model of the new Antonov An-132 Light Multipurpose Transport Aircraft. The An-132 based on the Antonov An-32. Antonov jointly developed the aircraft, with a joint venture with the Saudi Arabia Company KACST (King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology) According to the manufacturer the An-132 retain the best characteristics of the AN-132 including high thrust-to-weight ratio for operations in hot and high conditions. It will also offer reliability and flexibility to operators. The prototype expected to fly in October 2016.


In the daily flying program presented the Russian industry the new Mi-35M Transport /Attack Helicopter made by Russian Helicopters, the civil version of the multipurpose Ansat-K Helicopter made by Kazan Helicopters and the powerful Yak-130. The Russian Helicopter Holding announced on 2 June that Kazakhstan has ordered an undisclosed number of Mi-35M attack helicopters. The first deliveries of the helicopters through the" Rosoboronexport" is scheduled for the end of this year.
Kazakhstan Air Force has ordered during KADEX 2014, 36 Sukhoi Su-30SM's (SM = super maneuverable). The first four where delivered on time, and three of them are on display during Kadex 2016. One as static two at the flightline for the daily flying program, where the viewers could see this generation 4+ fighter in the daily solo display flown by Maj. Aslan Kulbasova and Maj. Vladimir Tkach.

Single and group aerobatics in the EC-145 helicopters demonstrate Col. Talgat Syzdykov and Col. Erken Dzhumagaliev.

Participants and guests of the exhibition were shown the display of the aerobatic team Zhetysu, which means "seven rivers", is a historical name of a part of Central Asia corresponding to the South-Eastern part of modern Kazakhstan. Group leader of the Team is Col. Timur Omarov, Led is Lt. Nurlan Orazov and the other pilots are, Col. Yerken Jumagaliyev, Lt. Arslan Galimov and Capt. Ruslan Makadiev. The team where founded in 2000 at Aktau Air Force Base. The team is training 3-4 times a week a few weeks before an official display. Each pilot is able to fly the solo display. So far the team has no displays outside of Kazakhstan. During the opening night was also a display of four-ship formation of Su-27. The display was headed by the commander of the Air Defense Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Maj. Gen. Dauren Kosanov.
Looking back, we have to say it was great event with fantastic photo opportunities. The only thing what we missed, was seeing other aircraft in the inventory of the powerful Kazakhstan Air Force on the ground and in the air: the MiG-29, Mig-31, An-12 and so on. So let us hope to see them during KADEX-2018.
's team would like to thank the Media and Communications organization of the Ministry of Defence, Kazakhstan and special greetings to the Officer of the press-service of the Ministry of Defence, Zhansaya Omarova, Sabina Murzalinova and Tlek Orazalin and their team for the great hospitality and friendliness and perfect organization and support. See you in 2018!
Air display:

Su-27 and Su-30SM

Mi-35M Nr.341 flew daily
Yak-130  flew daily
Ansat-K flew daily
Mi-8MSB (upgrade by Motor Sich from Ukraine) flew daily
Eurocopter EC 145 flew daily 
Zlin Z 242L flew daily

Static displays included:

Su-30SM Nr.04
Mi-171 Nr.42
Mi-17V-5 Nr.07
C.295M Nr.04
Su 25 Nr.05
An 72 Nr.08
B 757-2M6ER
Embraer 190 Air Astana
Airbus A 320 Air Astana
Beech King Air 350 ER

various Tanks and other armoured vehicles...


Report and photography byPeter Thivessen and Wolfgang Jarisch for

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