How does the Dassault Mirage 2000 compare to newer 4th generation fighters?

Another direction of modernization of the Mirage 2000-5 variant was the expansion of strike capabilities, in particular, the provision of the possibility of using high-precision weapons at night. As a result, a modification of the Mirage 2000-5 Mk 2 [Mirage 2000-9] appeared, which received the latest digital computers developed for the Rafale fighter, various avionics, and weapons. Moreover, the machine had an open architecture, which made it possible to install new equipment in the future.

Dassault Mirage 2000-9 (Mk 2) multirole combat aircraft
Photo: Tactical Report

Thales developed a new RDY 2 radar for the aircraft, which had enhanced capabilities for operation on the ground and on the sea surface. The cockpit instrumentation was also modernized – new multifunctional indicators with a larger diagonal, a high-precision INS Totem 3000 with a laser gyroscope and a built-in satellite navigation system signal receiver, as well as an upgraded ICMS Mk III electronic countermeasures and reconnaissance complex were installed. The range of weapons included MICA missiles with a thermal seeker and a SCALP EG / Storm Shadow cruise missile, the aircraft was equipped with a Damocles reconnaissance and target designation container.

The 2000-5 Mk II variant was ordered by the UAE and Greece. The UAE Air Force signed the contract in December 1997; the base 2000-5 Mk II was delivered with some modifications, which received the designation 2000-9. According to the contract, 30 new 2000-9s were delivered to the UAE and 32 Mirage EAD/RAD/DAD aircraft were upgraded to the same standard. Among the equipment installed at the request of the customer was the IMEWS electronic countermeasures and reconnaissance complex, which is generally identical to the ICMS Mk 3, but with enhanced capabilities to suppress enemy air defenses.

Aircraft 2000-9 for the UAE Air Force also received MICA missiles with a thermal seeker, Black Shaheen cruise missiles [SCALP EG / Storm Shadow variant], and a Shehab container – Damocles variant. The first machines were delivered in April 2003.

The Hellenic Air Force has ordered 15 new 2000-5 Mk IIs and upgrades kits for 10 of its Mirage 2000EGs, upgraded by Hellenic Aerospace Industries, Tanagra. The Greek Air Force preferred to include the AM39 Exocet Block 2 anti-ship missiles, the SCALP cruise missile, and the AASM family of modular aviation ammunition [the latter are called both modular missiles and smart bombs] in the armament of the AM39 Exocet Block 2 anti-ship missiles. The first deliveries – were in 2004.

Dassault Mirage 2000-9 (Mk 2) multirole combat aircraft
Photo: Savvas Savvaidis

The Mirage 2000 production line was closed in 2007, the last being the Mirage 2000-5 Mk II fighter for the Hellenic Air Force.

In 2019, the Ministry of Defense of the United Arab Emirates signed an agreement on the modernization of the French Mirage 2000-9 fighters in service with the country’s Air Force. Details of the upcoming upgrade were not disclosed, however, it was previously reported that the aircraft was to be equipped with the TALIOS [TArgeting Long-range Identification Optronic System] container target designation system and the Thales RDY-3 radar. Other elements and systems may be installed in the course of ongoing work. It is assumed that the re-equipment of aircraft will be carried out over the next 10 years.

Modification Mirage 2000-9
Wingspan, m 9.13
Aircraft length, m 14.36
Aircraft height, m 5.14
Wing area, m2 41.00
Aircraft weight, kg:
– empty 7500
– normal takeoff 14000
– maximum takeoff 16700
Fuel, l 4000
Engine type 1 x turbofan SNECMA M53-P2
Thrust, kN:
– unforced 1 x 64.30
– forced 1 x 95.10
Maximum speed, km/h:
– at high altitude 2695 (M=2.2)
– at low altitude 1470 (M=1.2)
Cruising speed, km/h 885
Ferry range, km 3333
Practical range, km 1852
Maximum rate of climb, m/min 17040
Practical ceiling, m 16764
Operating overload 9
Crew, people 1
Armament: two 30 mm DEFA 554 cannons with 125 rounds per cannon.combat load – 6200 kg on 9 hardpointsVarious variants of the following weapons:UR air-to-air Matra Super 530, MICA (medium range), R.550 Magic 2, Sky FlashUR air-to-ground AS.30, AS.30L or AS-37 Martel or Black ShahinePRUR Armat, anti-ship missiles AM39 Exocet, cruise missiles SCALPconventional bombs weighing up to 1000 kg,laser-guided bombs BLG1000 Arcole and BLG250 cluster bombs up to 400 kg or BLG66 Belouga,anti-road BAP-100 and VAR-120, Type 531 grenade launchers.Thompson-CSF/Martin Marietta ATLIS II container, orcontainers Dassault CC421 with 30 mm DEFA gun and PU 68 mm NUR

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