Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-19

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The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-19 (NATO reporting name Farmer) is a third-generation Soviet, single-seater jet engined fighter aircraft. It was the first Soviet production aircraft capable of supersonic speeds in level flight.


The aircraft was designed by the Mikoyan Gurevich design bureau. The first flight was made in September 1953 and the aircraft entered production in 1955. Around 8,500 examples were made, mainly in the USSR but also in the People's Republic of China (as the Shenyang J-6) and Eastern Europe. The aircraft saw service with a number of other national airforces including those of Cuba, North Vietnam, Egypt, Pakistan and North Korea. The aircraft saw combat during the Vietnam War and the Bangladesh War.

In the USSR it was superseded by the MiG-21. The Shenyang J-6 remained a staple of the Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force, and has also been developed into the Nanchang Q-5 (NATO reporting name 'Fantan') attack aircraft. Despite its age, the MiG-19 and its descendants exhibit good handling characteristics at low altitude and a surprisingly high rate of climb, and their hard-hitting cannon makes them formidable adversaries in close combat.


The MiG-19 was designed as an interceptor. The initial MiG-19F and MiG-19PF models suffered longitudinal control problems at transsonic speeds, a result of carrying over the tail design from the MiG-17, prompting a hasty redesign. All MiG-19 versions suffered from the extreme sensitivity of their early generation jet engines, which often refused to start on the ground, unless the aircraft was rotated to face into the wind. Once in the air, the MiG-19 performed much better and the twin-engined, large wing area fighter jet was inherently safer to fly than the early delta winged aircraft.

Early MiG-19F (NATO 'Farmer-A') and MiG-19PF (NATO 'Farmer-B') shared the armament of the MiG-17, with two NR-23 and one NL-37 cannon. The MiG-19S (NATO 'Farmer-C') was armed with three 30mm NR-30 cannon and either bombs or rockets. This variant was largely manufactured in Czechoslovakia. The interceptor MiG-19PM (NATO 'Farmer-D') model deleted the cannon in favor of an RP-5 Izumrud (NATO 'Scan Odd') radar, and carried four beam-riding K-5 (NATO AA-1 'Alkali') air-to-air missiles. Mikoyan developed a two-seat trainer version, designated MiG-19U, but it was not produced (although the PRC produced a trainer version, the JJ-6).


General Characteristics

  • Length: 12.6m
  • Wingspan: 9.2 m
  • Height: 3.65m
  • Powerplant: Two Tumansky R-9 turbojets, max. 32 kN thrust each.


  • Maximum speed: 1,455 km/h.
  • Maximum operating height: 17,500 m
  • Operational range: 685 km (this could be stretched to over 2,000 km).
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Mikoyan-Gurevitch MiG-19
Related content
Related Development

Nanchang Q-5 - Shenyang J-6

Similar Aircraft

F-100 Super Sabre - Dassault Super Mystère

Designation Series

MiG-13 - MiG-15 - MiG-17 - MiG-19 - MiG-21 - MiG-23 - MiG-25

Related Lists List of military aircraft of the Soviet Union and the CIS - List of fighter aircraft

Lists of Aircraft | Aircraft manufacturers | Aircraft engines | Aircraft engine manufacturers

Airports | Airlines | Air forces | Aircraft weapons | Missiles | Timeline of aviation

de:Mikojan-Gurewitsch MiG-19


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