To make this website work, we log user data. By using Shephard's online services, you agree to our Privacy Policy, including cookie policy.

Open menu Search

Staying power: The importance of mid-life upgrades (opinion)

9th July 2024 - 13:06 GMT | by Edward Hunt


Ukraine’s rapid integration of Western missiles and other technologies onto its legacy Su-27s underlines the importance of upgrades to create new capabilities that are immediately available. (Photo: Armed Forces of Ukraine)

The rapid integration of advanced Western weapons with Soviet-era Ukrainian aircraft and the adaptability shown in makeshift solutions has highlighted the essential role of mid-life upgrades in maintaining effective military forces amid evolving combat and technological challenges.

The frequent references to lessons from Ukraine may seem clichéd, but they remain compelling. Most conflicts challenge pre-war assumptions to varying degrees, and this war is no exception. War often leads to rapid, unplanned advancements, underscoring that nearly all military assumptions are questionable until tested. As boxer Mike Tyson aptly put it, "Everyone has a plan, until they are punched in the face."

From an aerospace perspective, one surprising development is how quickly the Ukrainian military has adopted and adapted new weapons and systems. Previously, integrating components required months of careful planning before implementation. In Ukraine, however, advanced Western equipment

Already have an account? Log in

Want to keep reading this article?

Read this Article

Get access to this article with a Free Basic Account

  • Original curated content, daily across air, land and naval domains
  • 2 free stories per week
  • Personalised news alerts
  • Daily and weekly newsletters
Create account

Unlimited Access

Access to all our premium news as a Premium News 365 Member. Corporate subscriptions available.

  • Original curated content, daily across air, land and naval domains
  • 14-day free trial (cancel at any time)
  • Unlimited access to all published premium news
Start your free trial
Edward Hunt


Edward Hunt

Edward has worked in the aerospace and defence Industry since 2005, initially for Jane’s and then …

Read full bio

Share to