Russian Su-35 Fighter Jet Sees Export Orders Soar
15:12 26.07.2015(updated 15:14 26.07.2015)
The Sukhoi Su-35 is set to follow in the wake of the Soviet Union's legendary Su-27 and Su-30 fighter jets in becoming a major military export.
Negotiations for the export of the Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jet are coming to fruition, with orders from buyers in South American and Asian countries expected to be agreed upon in the near future, sources close to talks on the export of the aircraft have told military correspondent Ilya Kramnik.
The Sukhoi Su-35 fighter is a single-seat twin-engine super-maneuverable multirole fighter, built by the Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aircraft Production Association in Russia's Far East and designed by Sukhoi, which has a contract to deliver 48 of the planes to the Russian Air Force before the end of 2015.
The Su-35 is known as a 4++ generation aircraft, which employs fifth generation technology, rendering it superior to other fourth generation fighters currently under development. The Su-35 is also a more reliable option than other fifth generation planes which are in their development phase, the best known of which are the US F-35, the Chinese J-20, and the Sukhoi PAK-FA [T-50].
The PAK-FA is due to finish testing and enter into production in 2016, after which 55 PAK-FA jets will be delivered to the Russian Air Force.
The Su-35, currently the Russian Air Force's most advanced fighter, first caught the eye of buyers and the public at the Paris Air Show in June 2013, where pilots displayed the aircraft's impressive acrobatic capabilities, including the Pugachev Cobra maneuver.
Writing in Lenta.ru, Kramnik reports that the sticking point between the Russian and Chinese negotiators over the size of the order is nearing a resolution, and expects a compromise order of 24 fighters for China's Air Force.
According to Kramnik, Russian negotiators, originally seeking to export a larger order of 48 planes, are also negotiating safeguards in the event that China makes a copy of its plane, as was the case with its Su-27 fighter jet, which was copied by the Chinese J-11 jet.
Other potential buyers include Pakistan and Brazil, with Kramnik also referring to figures from manufacturer Polet, which makes parts for the Su-35, showing increased production of its onboard system in order to fulfil orders for a total of 60 aircraft from Vietnam, Venezuela and Indonesia.
The Su-35 is a successor to the Su-30, a two-seater fighter which entered into service in 1996 and has been exported to militaries in South America, Asia and Africa, with the biggest orders coming from China, which operates more than 100 of the jets, and India, where 200 are in service.
The Indian Air Force revealed the enhanced capabilities of the Su-30 in a 2004 training exercise between the US and India; Indian pilots in the Su-30 were able to outmaneuver the US F-15s and win more than 90 percent of the mock air engagements conducted during the exercise.
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