Mil helicopter design bureau established March 1947 by Mikhail Leontyevich Mil (died January 1970), who began developing helicopters and autogyros in 1929. Mi-1 first flown 1948, also manufactured by PZL-Swidnik in Poland 1956-1965. Mi-2 first flown in Soviet Union but production transferred to Poland. Enlarged Mi-4 introduced 1952, also built in China. Mi-6 with detachable wings to provide up to 20 percent of required lift in cruise flight first flown June 1957, then world's largest helicopter, and 864 built at Rostov-on-Don (now Rostvertol) factory 1959-80, plus 50 at Moscow-Fili 1960-62. Mi-6 formed basis for Mi-22 airborne command post. Mi-8 first flown June 1961, becoming much produced medium civil and military helicopter (well over 7,000 built since 1965 and continuing), as turbine replacement for Mi-4; Mi-8 derivatives include Mi-9 tactical airborne command post (first flown 1977) and Mi-19 variant for use by commanders of tactical rocket units, Mi-17 (first flown August 1975) with change of engines and other modifications and Mi-171/Mi-172 export models, and lengthened Mi-173. Mi-10 flying crane development of Mi-6 first flown 1960, produced up to 1971. Two Mi-6 rotor/power packages used on giant Mi-12 with an overall rotors span of 67m, then the largest helicopter in world. Mi-14 became shorebased amphibious anti-submarine, SAR and mine-countermeasures helicopter (first flown August 1967).

Mi-26 first flown December 1977 as very heavy lift helicopter with two powerful turboshaft engines and single eightblade main rotor, with Mi-27 as airborne-command-post derivative. Series of helicopter gunships began with Mi-24 (first flown September 1969) and joining Soviet armed forces from 1970s, with Mi-25 as export version of Mi-24D tandem-cockpit variant and Mi-35 as second and improved export variant based on upgraded versions of Mi-24; most of over 2,500 built between 1970 and 1989, though smallscale production up to 1996. Latest attack helicopter from Mil is Mi-28, first flown November 1982 but yet to join armed forces at time of writing. Mi-34 first flown November 1986 as piston-engined lightweight sporting and training fourseat helicopter. Proposed new types include Mi-40 eighttroop armoured and armed assault helicopter, Mi-46 heavy transport helicopter, Mi-52 three-seat light piston helicopter, Mi-54 utility helicopter, Mi-58 medium civil helicopter, and Mi-60MAI two-seat light training helicopter. Approximately 25,000 Mil helicopters have been built. Current name Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant. Has 25 percent shareholding in Euromil.

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