India will export the Sukhoi T-50

Posted on by on October 22nd, 2012 | Comments Off

India will be entering the jet fighter game big time in 2020 when the country starts exporting a variant of the Russian Sukhoi T-50 stealth fighter. This information was confirmed by Russian Defense Minister last Wednesday when visiting Delhi, India. He said “The technical characteristics have been confirmed to our (Russia and India) defense ministries. We propose serial production of the plane should start by 2020”. The T-50 is a prototype of a multirole stealth fighter jet currently undergoing flight testing in Russia by the Russian Air Force. The jet fighter will feature an electronically-scanned active-array radar, super cruise capability, high maneuverability and low radar and infrared signatures. Sukhoi claims it will have significantly better performance than the US-designed Lockheed F-22 Raptor which is now in service. Considering Sukhoi have launched successfully amazing jet fighters in the past, engineers of the Lockheed F-22 Raptor should be worried and working on next and improved variations to counterbalance the T-50. This announcement is part of a larger Russia-India cooperation agreement seeing India purchasing another 42 Sukhoi SU-30MKI featuring advanced active electronically-scanned array radar system as well as modified electronic warfare systems and the ability to fire the land-attack variant of the BrahMos Russian-Indian supersonic cruise missile. Without making any noise as a war monger, India is totally revamping its air force and is gathering momentum on knowledge acquisition. India is currently reshaping its air force, with the purchase of 126 Rafale as well. By 2020, India will therefore be a major player in the sale and marketing of jet fighters, with probably the full knowledge to develop its own aircraft in the coming years.

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