Russia announces new fighter, Putin praises country’s air power


Moscow (AP) — On Tuesday, a Russian aircraft manufacturer unveiled a prototype of a new fighter with stealth capabilities and other advanced characteristics.

Russian President Vladimir Putin visited a future military aircraft on display at the MAKS-2021 International Aerospace Salon in Zhukovskiy, a suburb of Moscow.

The new design was developed by aircraft manufacturer Sukhoi under the LTS program (Russian acronym for Light Tactical Aircraft).

The manufacturer said the prototype is scheduled to make its maiden flight in 2023 and delivery may begin after 2026. They said the new design could be converted into a pilotless version and a two-seater variation.

The new aircraft is smaller than Russia’s latest Su-57 2 engine stealth fighter, also manufactured by Sukhoi, and has only one engine. It has not been named yet, and details about its features and production prospects have not been revealed.

Russian Rostec state-owned companies, including Sukhoi and other aircraft manufacturers, have promoted new planes with checkmate tags. This is clearly intended to emphasize its excellent properties.

The new military aircraft belong to the so-called fifth-generation fighter. This definition assumes advanced features such as stealth characteristics and supersonic cruising capabilities.

Rostec also said the new design will include artificial intelligence capabilities to assist pilots and other innovative technologies. He emphasized that it is designed to reduce service costs and can easily adapt to the needs of different customers.

Future Russian fighters appear to be aimed at competing with the US F-35 Lightning II fighter, which was commissioned in 2015.

Rostec launched an aggressive advertising campaign the day before the show, revealing a photo of a new fighter hidden under a black tarpaulin, “Do you want to see me naked?” It is written below it. We also posted a video featuring praise customers from India, United Arab Emirates, Argentina, Vietnam and other countries, reflecting their export wishes.

Airplane spotters flocked to Zhukovskiy last week to take pictures of a new airplane taxied in a parking lot across a huge airfield that has functioned as the country’s top military aircraft test facility since the Cold War.

The Kremlin made the modernization of the country’s arsenal a top priority in tensions with the West after Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014.

It also strongly encourages the development of new jet airliners aimed at competing with planes manufactured by Boeing and Airbus, which currently make up the majority of the Russian aircraft carrier fleet.

While these programs faced delays in Western sanctions blocking the import of Western engines and other key components, Russia saw a new engine for the new MS-21 airliner, which was also exhibited at the Zhukovsky show. I was able to make.

“What we see in Putinsky today shows that Russian aviation has great potential for development, and our aircraft manufacturing industry continues to create new and competitive aircraft designs.” Putin said in a speech at the opening of the show.