Why is the project T-50 (PAK FA) ’bogged down’ and is often postponed?

This is not the first time the launch of Russia’s T-50 (PAK FA) fifth generation jet fighter has been postponed. Designers and senior officials at the Russian Defense Ministry originally gave 2016 as the year when the new aircraft would go into service, but now the deadline has been postponed indefinitely.

On Feb. 2, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yury Borisov said that as long as there were similar aircraft that meet the requirements of the Armed Forces, there is no need to waste money on purchasing expensive new hardware.

“Most likely this will only happen in the next State Armament Program for 2018-2025,” said Borisov, adding that the T-50 still needs to be perfected.

Experts said it’s wrong to say that the T-50 is “bogged down” because developing an aircraft gradually in stages is common practice. “There have been misleading stories in the media, but the project is not bogged down,” said Viktor Murakhovsky, editor-in-chief of the magazine, Arsenal Otechestva. “All stages of work on the aircraft are on schedule.”

The designers are working on a new fifth generation engine, Izdeliye-30 [Product-30], in order for the fighter to meet all the challenges of the new era. Flight tests of the new engine will start at the end of 2017, or in early 2018. “It will take the designers another two or three years to finalize the project before the aircraft goes into series production and into service with the Russian Air Force,” said Murakhovsky.




Irkut Corporation expands Su-30MKI Program

Irkut Corporation (a member of UAC) participates in AERO INDIA 2017 Air Show (Bangalore, 14-18 February). The corporate products are represented in models of Su-30MKI, Yak-130, MC-21, and Yak-152 aircraft at the stand of UAC.

Su-30MKI multirole fighters are the exceptional exhibits of AERO INDIA 2017. These aircraft constitute the backbone of the Indian Air Force. Traditionally, Su-30MKIs are presented at static display and in the flight program of the air show.


Su-30MKI program comprising development, deliveries, establishment of licence manufacturing, has become one the most successful Russia’s military-technical cooperation programmes. While participating in numerous international exercises, the pilots of Indian Air Force flying Su-30MKI fighters have been repeatedly winning combat training engagements against modern fighter aircraft of various types.

Currently, Indian enterprises are building up Su-30MKI overhaul infrastructure.

The presentation on Su-30MKI program status is available at the official web-site of Irkut Corporation.




Russian Aviation

New Engine For PAK FA Maiden Flight in 2017

Russia’s fifth-generation T-50 PAK FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation) fighter jet with the new engine will make its first flight in the fourth quarter of 2017, the press service of Russia’s United Engine Corporation said on Tuesday.



“The first flight of the aircraft with the new engine is expected in the fourth quarter of 2017,” said a spokesman for the company that produces engines for military and civil aviation. The project of creating the new engine is “in line with the timeframe,” he added.




Now the Russian fifth-generation jet is fitted with the so-called first-stage 117C engine. The new engine has not yet received its official title and is called the second-stage engine.
The PAK FA plane is a promising fifth-generation fighter jet. It performed the first flight in 2010.The first five serial-produced T-50 fighter jets are expected to be delivered to the Armed Forces this year. The deliveries of the aircraft to the Armed Forces are due to start after 2018.



China’s Aircraft Carrier Liaoning and Its Fleet Return to Qingdao Port

China’s aircraft carrier Liaoning and its fleet returned to a military port in Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province, on Friday 13.01, after completing their 20-day actual combat training in the Bohai Sea, the Yellow Sea, the East China Sea and the South China Sea.

All the training and relevant missions were conducted according to schedule. The training has helped lift the officers and soldiers’ combat capabilities, further deepened the integration of ship and aircraft, optimized the process of command and support and explored into new ways for the integration, systematization and actual combat training of the aircraft carrier and its fleet.

During the training, the carrier-borne jet fighters J-15 conducted training in such subjects as carrier-based take-off and landing, air-battle tactics and refueling for each other.

“This is a landmark, marking a new starting point for the formation and development of combat capabilities of our aircraft carrier and its fleet. We now fully have the reason to believe that we could go further and fly higher in the near future,” said Dai Mingmeng, commander of the carrier-borne air force base.

Russian air wing returns from Syria

According to the press service of the Northern Fleet 03.02.2017, the first group of pilots of carrier-based aircraft of the Northern Fleet (NF) made a flight from the heavy aircraft carrier “Admiral Kuznetsov” from the designated area of the Barents Sea based on the airfield in the Murmansk region, following the successful completion of tasks in Syria.
Among them, the crews of three MiG-29K, Su-33 and three helicopters – the Ka-52, Ka-29 and Ka-27.

Russia’s entire light fighter aviation will soon be armed with Mikoyan MiG-35

Russia’s entire light fighter aviation will soon be armed with Mikoyan MiG-35 (NATO reporting name: Fulcrum-F) aircraft, Russian Aerospace Force Commander-in-Chief Viktor Bondarev said on Friday.
“Some time will pass and we’ll replace the entire light fighter element precisely with this class,” he said.

MiG-35 fighter jets will also be delivered to the Swifts aerobatic team, which currently flies MiG-29 aircraft, he added.

“I believe that the day is not far away when we’ll retrain the Swifts to operate this splendid plane,” the Aerospace Force commander-in-chief said.
“The development of the MiG-35 is actually a victory,” the general said.
Russia’s most advanced Mikoyan fighter jet will be able to use laser weapons:
“This plane can use all the types of the newest weaponry and laser weapons as well.”
“Thank you very much for this splendid creation, which has confirmed once again that there are no planes better than those in Russia,” the general said, addressing the aircraft designers.
“It is capable of engaging in super-maneuverable air fights and strike targets both at sea and in the air. We’ll always have the best aerodynamics. We had some gaps in the work on engines but we have proved with the development of the Su-30SM and Su-34 aircraft that we have the best engines,” the commander said.
Russia’s United Aircraft-Building Corporation is holding an international presentation of the most advanced MiG-35 fighter whose flight tests began on Thursday. The Mig-35 is a 4++-generation multirole fighter jet developed on the basis of the serial-produced MiG-29K/KUB and MiG-29M/M2 aircraft.
It was reported earlier that the Aircraft Corporation MiG was considering developing its own fifth-generation fighter jet as a light alternative to the T-50 PAK FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation) fighter created by the Sukhoi Design Bureau.
United Aircraft-Building Corporation General Designer Sergei Korotkov who earlier held the post of the MiG Corporation CEO called as “quite probable” the development of a new plane on the basis of the MiG-35 aircraft.


International presentation of the MiG-35 will take place on January 27

On January 27, 2017 the industrial complex of the Russian Aircraft Corporation “MiG” will host an international presentation of the MiG-35 aircraft, of the latest multi-functional complex. More than twenty countries around the world confirmed that they will be attending the ceremony.

In addition, today, 26 January, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited the industrial complex of the Russian Aircraft Corporation “MiG” in Lukhovitsy near Moscow, where he was presented, for the first time,a new aviation complex of the MiG-35, developed within the framework of the state defense order of the Russian Federation Ministry of Defence.

During the visit, Russian President will visit the first demonstration flight of a multifunctional combat aircraft, as well as to get acquainted with modern aircraft production, will hear a report on the management of the corporation MiG-35 prospects in the Russian army and abroad. After the presentation Russian President held the first 2017 meeting of the Military-Industrial Commission of Russia.

“MiG-35 -. The latest lightweight multifunction aviation complex, developed in the framework of the state defense order of the Russian Federation Ministry of Defence of the MiG-35 is designed to work in areas of high-intensity conflicts in the conditions of intensive air defense, capable of hitting air, ground and surface targets Corporation. “MiG” is in talks with potential customers, a number of countries have already confirmed their interest in the supply of combat aircraft export potential to date is a few tens of countries “, – noted in the UAC.


Fighter Jet Crash at Air Show in Southern Thailand

Swedish-made Saab JAS 39 Gripen fighter jet crashed to the ground after going into a stunt maneuver during an airshow dedicated to Children’s Day, the Bangkok Post newspaper reported.




The airport was closed to clear the runaway, the news outlet said, adding that the authorities had open an investigation into the incident. Thailand has purchased 12 Gripen C/D-model single-engine fighter jets from Sweden since 2008





Read more: Sputniknews

OPK secretly Developed System “friend or foe” for the fighter PAK-FA

OPK has completed development of a system of radar identification “friend or foe” for the fifth-generation fighter T-50 (PAK FA), a new set of different immunity to interference and enhanced electronic stealth, said on Wednesday the press service of the corporation.

Work on the creation of this equipment as part of the defense industry leads the Central Research Institute of Economy, Informatics and Management Systems.

“The combined instrument-making company has completed the development of radar identification system” friend or foe “for advanced and modernized aircraft complexes Su-35S, the PAK FA and IL-76,” – said in a statement.



The press service specified that the software and hardware designed to determine the state of aircraft supplies military and civil aircraft and their recognition in order to protect “their” flying machines from the erroneous destruction.



“Most of the identification system” friend or foe “today is already technically obsolete high energy visibility of such equipment is an important factor in unmasking, which can take advantage of the defeat of the enemy at the end.” – Said the first deputy general director CRI EISU Inna Grigorenko, which quoted the press service.
She added that “the new software and hardware complex substantially increased range resolution, provided protection from interference and reduced output power, which can significantly increase the level of secrecy of electronic and energy of the whole system.”

In 2016, the system has successfully passed preliminary tests and showed a high level of performance in a complex electronic environment, as well as extreme temperatures and mechanical damage. The modular construction of the system can be integrated into the avionics like an old fleet and advanced aircraft systems such as the PAK FA and the Su-35S




Black Sea Fleet’s aviation group in Crimea gets new Sukhoi-30SM fighters

Three newly-manufactured Sukhoi-30SM fighter jets have been delivered to the Black Sea Fleet’s aviation group, the fleet’s press-secretary Vyacheslav Trukhachyov said on Monday.


The planes have already arrived at their permanent base Saki in Crimea.

“The planes were manufactured at the Irkutsk Aircraft-Building Plant and handed over to the Black Sea Fleet under a program for upgrading its aviation group. Upon completing a long flight the jets joined a separate air assault regiment of the Black Sea Fleet,” Trukhachev said.
The Sukhoi-30SM crews earlier underwent training at a center in Yeisk.
The Sukhoi-30SM is a generation 4++ highly-maneuverable multi-role fighter. The Black Sea Fleet has been using them since 2015.




Russia’s Aerospace Force to fully renew aircraft by 2026

The Russian Aerospace Force will fully renew the pool of its aircraft and helicopters within ten years, Head of the Force’s Engineering and Aviation Service Colonel Yuri Sivokonenko said on Wednesday.




“The planned measures allow maintaining a high fitness level of aircraft while the pool of planes and helicopters will be fully renewed by 2026,” he said.




This year, Russian Aerospace Force units have received more than 100 advanced aircraft, the officer said.

“Part of the hardware is still being accepted and will arrive for the troops in December. Defense enterprises will implement their obligations in full until the end of the year,” he added.
Russia’s Aerospace Force’s Engineering and Aviation Service is celebrating its centenary on Wednesday.



Another crash for F/A-Hornets

U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Kyle “Chet” Turco. (RELEASED)

One of the Marine Corps’ F/A-18 Hornet jets crashed off Japan Wednesday, military officials tell CBS News, on the 75th Anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack.

The pilot, who was from the to 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Okinawa, ejected from the plane during a regular training mission at about 6:40 p.m. local time, 120 miles southeast of Iwakuni in southern Japan, the Marine Corps said in a statement.

A search-and-rescue operation has been launched, officials said. The cause of the accident and the fate of the pilot are not clear at this time.



U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter is in Japan for the anniversary. He delivered remarks Wednesday with Japanese Defense Minister Tomomi Inada.

“It’s a testament to the strength of our alliance and the character of the Japanese people that a mere 75 years after Pearl Harbor, my friend and counterpart, Minister Inada, and I can stand next to each other proudly and discuss how our two countries can strengthen the security of this region together,” Carter said.

He stressed his view that U.S.-Japan relations have never been stronger. “America’s interests in this region are enduring,” he said in reference to speculation about the direction of President-elect Trump’s Asia policy.

The Marine Corps has air installations in at least two places in Japan, including in the large base on Okinawa.

This would be the 9th major incident involving a “Legacy Hornet” (including the Canadian CF-18 lost on Nov. 28, 2016) in the last 6 months.

Although each crash has its own root causes and may depend on several contributing factor (including the human error), we can’t but observe, once again, that the rate of crashes involving legacy Hornets is alarming.

Two U.S. Marine Corps F-18 Hornets from MCAS Miramar crashed on Nov. 9 near San Diego. Another one on Oct. 25. A Swiss Air Force Hornet was lost on Aug. 29, whereas a Navy F/A-18C crashed on Aug. 2. On Jul. 27 USMC F/A-18 crashed so as the Blue Angels Hornet that crashed on Jun. 2.

This is how we commented the Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 crash:

“In the wake of the Hornet crashes from June through October, the U.S. Marine Corps temporarily grounded its non-deployed Hornets. Unfortunately, few days after the ban was lifted, two more F/A-18Cs were lost on Nov. 9.

Hornet crashes over the last year have depleted the number of available airplanes for training and operations. According to USNI News the service had 85 Hornets available for training, compared to a requirement for 171.

In order to face the critical shortage of operational fighters caused by both crashes and high operational tempos, the U.S: Marine Corps has launched a plan that will see Boeing upgrade 30 retired legacy Hornets (currently stored at the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona) to a standard dubbed F/A-18C+.

With this upgrade, that will also embed new avionics, the service will be able to keep up with its operational tasks until the F-35 is able to take over.

Once upgraded to the C+ standard, these “gap fillers” should be more than enough to conduct combat operations in low-lethality scenarios like those that see the USMC at work these days.

Furthermore, once these “refreshed” Hornets are delivered to the squadrons, older airframes can be retired, improving flight safety.”

Once again: aircraft may crash for a variety of reasons, not always technical. Still, the rate of Legacy Hornet crashes in the last months seems to be unusual and, as such, concerning.



The Aviationist

CBS News

Admiral Kuznetsov loses second aircraft as Su-33 crashes into sea

The Russian Navy’s Admiral Kuznetsov air wing suffered its second loss in less than a month when a Sukhoi Su-33 ‘Flanker’ combat aircraft crashed into the sea following a landing mishap, the Kremlin confirmed on 5 December.

The multirole fleet defence fighter crashed into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Syria after one of the ship’s arrestor cables snapped, state media quoted the Russian defence ministry as saying. The accident happened just days after a MiG-29KR ‘Fulcrum’ was forced to ditch into the sea on 14 November after a problem with Admiral Kuznetsov’s arrestor cable had prevented it from landing before the pilot ran out of fuel. On both occasions, the pilots were rescued.

With these losses the carrier’s fixed-wing combat force of at least five Su-33s and four MiG-29Ks has been depleted by about 20%, just weeks into its much vaunted debut operational deployment.

While the ship was seen enroute to the Mediterranean carrying five Su-33s, four MiG-29Ks, one Kamov Ka-52K attack helicopter, two Kamov Ka-29TB assault helicopters, two Kamov Ka-27PS search-and-rescue helicopters, and one Kamov Ka-31 airborne early warning helicopter, satellite imagery taken of Humaymim Air Base in Syria on 20 November and obtained by IHS Jane’s showed a large proportion of these assets now operating from land rather than from Admiral Kuznetsov .






IHS Jane’s 360





New engine being designed for 5th generation Russian fighter aircraft

The United Engine Corporation (UEC), part of Rostec state holding company, successfully conducted the first ground-based ignition of the second stage of the engine for the Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation (PAK FA T-50 aircraft).

In order to carry out the testing, gas generators had to be prepared for it, in addition to the demonstrator engine.

Currently, the PAK FA is using a first stage engine, a modernized Al-41.

According to Pavel Bulat, avionics specialist and head of the Kupol Group of Companies, the AI-41 is an updated version of engines used for the Su-27, Su-30 and other models in that series.

“The engine for the T-50 was significantly upgraded from the original models, incorporating the latest control system, compressors, etc. Nevertheless, it still falls short of the 5th generation model, and is very noticeable on radar screens,” said the expert.





The new second-stage engine is one of the most advanced in the world, said Bulat. It enables the T-50 to accelerate to supersonic speed, and maintain that velocity throughout the flight, without using afterburners.





“The speed will be as much as Mach 1.6 (about 1,200 mph), depending on the terrain over which the flight is taking place. The engine will also significantly improve the stealth properties of the PAK FA, thanks to the use of new composite materials,” said Bulat.

The designers expect to start testing the new engine on fighter jets in 2018, and for the motor to be fully integrated in 2020.

“In addition to the engine, a radar station also needs to be modified, and engineers need to remove the last deficiencies in the airframe concept, which, among all the aircraft flying today, is the most modern in the world,” said the analyst.

New fighter’s weapons
30-mm cannon

The firing unit consists of one of the lightest cannon in its class, the 9-A1-4071K, which is designed to destroy armored vehicles or armored enemy targets. During one flight, the pilot can shoot 150 rounds from the 30-mm cannon.

The future T-50 5th generation fighter will also carry high-explosive and volume-detonating bombs, Sergey Rusakov, General Director of the Techmash Group, announced on September 22.

Rusakov said they are now considering high-explosive incendiary OFZAB-500 aviation bombs for the PAK FA, and volume-detonating ODAB-500PMV, which are currently being used in Russian operations in Syria. Engineers have already produced a set of warheads for future tests.





According to the rearmament program, Russian Armed Forces will receive a batch of 12 T-50 fighters before the end of this year. A new contract for the supply of 5 th generation aircraft will be discussed with the Ministry of Defense at the end of 2016, after which the War Department will decide how many new aircraft are needed.







Nikolai Litovkin
Russia beyond the headlines

Russian knights received the second installment of Su-30sm

Airport Kubinka:

Aerobatics Air-group “Russian Knights” received the four fighter Su-30sm, and on 1th December, will start to fly on the new technique, reported in the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.




“The second batch of Su-30sm have just arrived in Kubinka from the factory. “Russian Knights” is fully equipped with new fighters, so from 1 December, the pilots will fly a new aircraft.” – representative of the Russian military department said. He added that the air group pilots passed the theoretical and simulator training on the Su-30cm in Lipetsk Air Base, and have already performed several flights with an instructor pilot.

“Squadron, which formed on the basis of air group” Russian Knights “, will now fly on airplanes of two types – the Su-27 and Su-30sm”, – noted in the Ministry of Defense.

Su-30cm is a super-maneuverable multifunctional fighter generation “4 ++”, with combined functions of a fighter, attack aircraft and bombers, equipped with radar with a phased antenna array, engines with thrust vector control and canards.




Why did a Russian MiG-29K crash into the Mediterranean?

A Russian fighter trying to land on the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier after flying a mission as part of Russia’s Syrian operation on Nov. 13 crashed into the Mediterranean Sea due to the failure of both engines, according to sources in the Russian Defense Ministry.





A source familiar with the organization of flights on the aircraft carrier told Gazeta.ru that the MiG-29KR from the Admiral Kuznetsov missile aircraft carrier had fallen into the sea because both of its engines broke down in mid-flight.

The source added that the fighter’s pilot, who is chief of the service for Black Sea aviation flight safety and who ejected from the plane, has more than 200 landings on the Admiral Kuznetsov under his belt.

A source from the Defense Ministry also said that the pilot is highly qualified and is “one of the most experienced” of those trained in deck landings.

After the incident the Defense Ministry’s information and mass communications department made an official statement explaining the reason for the plane’s technical malfunction.

Urgency during landing

The source told Gazeta.ru that the deck of the Admiral Kuznetsov has four arresting gears.

When carrying out a landing the pilot must try to have the plane’s tailhook catch the second cable or if it can, the third (there is even a fourth, reserve cable). If the pilot tries to catch the first cable, there is a danger the tailhook may touch the ship’s deck, especially since at sea the aircraft carrier is subject to rocking.

On Nov. 13, the day of the accident, three MiG-29KRs took off from the aircraft carrier. After completing their flight missions the planes returned to the ship. The landings were to be conducted at an interval of three-four minutes.

The first fighter landed without any complications.






The second MiG-29KR caught the second arresting cable, tore it and in the end caught the fourth, reserve cable. The torn second cable got tangled up with the third cable and incapacitated it for a plane’s landing.

For some time it was basically impossible for the planes to land on the aircraft carrier. At that time the third MiG-29KR was approaching.

Since the aircraft carrier’s team needed some time to fix the arresting cables, the flight supervisor told the pilot of the third plane to land after circling the ship a second time.

While the plane was waiting to land both of its engines broke down. According to a preliminary theory, fuel had stopped entering the engines. In such cases, a jet plane plummets like a rock and the pilot can do only one thing: eject.


Russia beyond the headlines



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