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Russia gets fresh batch of Su-57 stealth fighters; Russian Air Force to buy a total of 76 5th-Gen warplanes

Source : The EurAsian Times

Russia gets fresh batch of Su-57 stealth fighters; Russian Air Force to buy a total of 76 5th-Gen warplanes
Fifth-generation Su-57 aircraft during the transfer of the Ministry of Defence to Russia (Image Source: UAC)

The Russian Defense Ministry has received a new batch of Su-57 ‘Felon’ fighter jets from the Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aviation Plant (owned by the United Aircraft Corporation). 

The press service of UAC announced on December 28. In addition to the fifth-generation fighter aircraft, the company also delivered a batch of the Su-35S for the Russian Aerospace Forces.

“KnAAZ manufactured and transferred to the Russian Defense Ministry another batch of serial fifth-generation Su-57 aircraft as part of the supply program of this year,” UAC said. 

Yuri Slyusar, the corporation’s general director, stated that the aircraft plant had fulfilled the current year’s production schedule for the Su-57 and multipurpose Su-35S fighters for the Russian Aerospace Forces. 

“We will continue to fulfill our obligations. The aircraft, scheduled for delivery next year, is already in production,” he noted. 

The Su-57 started receiving serial deliveries in 2022. By the end of 2024, the Russian defense ministry would acquire 22 fighters; by 2028, their force strength would increase to 76.

Meanwhile, Rostec CEO Sergey Chemezov said that the Komsomolsk-on-Amur aviation facility would be modernized to expand the production of fifth-generation Su-57 fighters. 

The press service said that knAAZ is now undertaking a massive modernization project that will significantly expand the output of these combat vehicles. 

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Another batch of Su-57 fighters was handed over to the Russian Defense Ministry: (Image Source: UAC)

It is stated that the Far Eastern plant is modernizing production, increasing production capabilities, commissioning new high-tech equipment, involving extra production staff, and establishing a contemporary production line for final assembly.

Denis Manturov, Deputy Prime Minister – Minister of Industry and Trade, stated that fifth-generation aircraft mass production could begin on schedule because of system decisions made at the state level to support the company’s modernization.

“The expansion of production capacities continues, new high-tech equipment is put into operation, and production personnel is additionally involved. A modern production line of the final assembly is working,” Manturov added. 

Sukhoi Su-57 Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft

The fifth generation Su-57 is developed by Sukhoi Design Bureau and Russian Aircraft Corporation. It is designed to eliminate a range of surface, ground, and air targets.

The aircraft has cutting-edge onboard technology, a supersonic cruising speed, intra-fuselage weapons, radio-absorbing coating, and more.

Russia’s first stealth-capable fighter plane aims to deliver enhanced capabilities to the country’s armed forces in terms of stealth, speed, missiles, and sensors. 

The aircraft is outfitted with multi-mission capability, automation, and artificial intelligence technology to dramatically enhance the Russian Air Force’s capabilities.

It will eventually replace the Air Force’s fourth-generation MiG-29 and Su-27 aircraft. Felon has a range of more than 1,500 kilometers, which is more than twice the range of the Su-27 fighter.

Due to enhanced aerodynamics, Sukhoi Su-57 can travel up to Mach 2 without afterburners. It has a range of up to 3,500 kilometers while traveling at subsonic speeds.

Russia also aims to deploy the S-70 Okhotnik (Hunter-B) strike drone alongside the Su-57 in a teaming arrangement. The stealth-capable drone will most likely serve as a “loyal wingman” for the Sukhoi Su-57 aircraft.

Four New Su 57 Fifth Generation stealth fighters inducred by Russian Aerospace Forces on 28 December 2022
Four New Su-57 Fifth Generation stealth fighters inducted by Russian Aerospace Forces on 28 December 2022. (Image: NSK Planes)

The plane is made of composite materials, which reduce the number of parts and thus the overall weight, enabling mass production. It has a wing body fuselage that combines the functions of a fighter jet and a strike aircraft.

The Sukhoi Su-57, in contrast to the original J-20 aircraft, has 3D thrust vectoring controls that enhance maneuverability at high speeds and altitudes. Besides, it is thought to have superior 3D thrust vectoring control capabilities than the F-22 Raptor. 

In close-quarters dogfight situations, the fighter is anticipated to have an advantage because of its excellent maneuverability and supersonic cruise capability. 

Felon has two side bays for short-range air-to-air missile storage and two internal armament bays between the engines. Internal weapon carriage reduces drag while allowing the aircraft to maintain a low radar profile.

The aircraft’s advanced avionics are coupled with a high degree of controlled automation and smart crew support. The enhanced avionics minimize the pilot’s burden, allowing him to concentrate on tactics and strategies.

Furthermore, the fighter can enable the pilot to share data and communicate with ground control systems and air groups in real-time. For enhanced angular coverage, the aircraft incorporates an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar installed on the nose. 

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