Why Russia’s Offer to Build its Elite Su-35 Fighters in India Could be Very Tempting for Delhi
The Russian Su-35 Flanker ‘4++ generation’ air superiority fighter has stood out among the seven contestants for the Indian Air Force’s Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) tender as the only heavyweight platform and the only one with an airframe specialised for air to air combat. Coming from a higher weight range the Su-35 can comfortably outperform all other contestants across the spectrum, with a heavier payload, longer range, higher altitude ceiling, heavier and more powerful sensors and electronics suites, and three dimensional thrust vectoring engines which provide a degree of manoeuvrability and a high speed unrivalled by all but the MiG-35. It is the only fighter in the contest confirmed to be able to deploy hypersonic air to air missiles, and alongside the MiG-35 is the only fighter expected to deploy APAA guided missiles. Despite its relatively low cost and high performance, a key drawback of the Su-35 relative to lighter jets such as the MiG-35 and Rafale are its higher maintenance requirements and operational costs – which arguably make it less suitable as a contestant for a medium weight fighter competition.
By linking an offer to manufacture Su-35 fighters in India with the ability to modernise the country’s existing fleet of over 250 Su-30MKI heavyweight fighters, the Russian offer may well compensate for the drawbacks of higher operational costs. Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation has reportedly offered to provide a number of Su-35 technologies as part of the contract, which could be used to upgrade India’s Su-30 fleet. Many of these will be manufactured in India itself, and this will significantly improve the performance of the Su-30. The contract would see engines and other systems from the Su-35 integrated onto Indian Su-30s, creating a considerable similarity of parts between the two jets and greater interoperability. Thus in turn can lead to easier maintenance and a reduction in net operational costs for India’s heavyweight fighter fleet – something which no other contender in the competition has a chance to offer.
Upgrading Su-30 fighters using Su-35 technologies would include integrating the newer fighter’s AL-41F-1S thrust-vectoring engines, a powerful Irbis-E radar and new electronic warfare systems. This will significantly increase the range at which the older aircraft can detect and track all manner of targets including stealth jets, which the Su-35 was designed to counter, and allow the Indian Su-30s to deploy a number of new standoff weapons previously not available to the platform. This could potentially include the R-37M hypersonic air to air missile, which has a 400km range and is compatible with Russian Su-35 and Su-57 fighters. The Su-30 design can thus benefit from many of the technologies developed for the Su-35, which significantly increases the attractiveness of selecting the heavyweight fighter in the MMRCA tender.
Wich fighter jet is better for India – F-15 or Su-35? A question without an answer.
The Russian super-maneuverable generation 4 Su-35 fighter has several advantages over the American F-15EX aircraft, Military Watch reports. Experts of the publication compared the prospects of these fighters, since both aircraft are believed to be in the MW, participate in a tender for the supply of the Indian Air Force. In their opinion, the Su-35 is much more likely to win due to a number of reasons.
In particular, experts say MW, the American fighter has a higher speed (Mach 2.5 versus Mach 2.25 for the Su-35). But this speed of aircraft develops exclusively in the stratosphere, for a very short time (a few minutes, afterburner) and is practically not used for air combat, except in rare cases to intercept an air object.
In general, in modern and promising aircraft, there is no point in comparing speed. She, by and large, does not interest anyone, as does the flight altitude. Today, fighter planes are no longer chasing each other, as in the air battles of the First and Second World Wars.
As for the maneuverability of the Su-35 and F-15EX, this is certainly a more difficult thing to analyze and compare. In certain circumstances, the maneuverability of a fighter is important, although by no means as decisive as in previous times.
By and large, it is not necessary to compare aircraft, but military aviation systems. From the point of view of aircraft (like aircraft), the Su-35 and F-15EX Advanced Eagle are comparable machines in terms of their characteristics. Something is better with one, something is better with another.
Combat aircraft systems – about one generation. Both aircraft represent deep modernizations in one case of a fighter to gain superiority in the air of the F-15, in the other – a Su-27 fighter-interceptor (in fact, our aircraft had the same purpose).
At the level at which the Su-35 and F-15EX are today, they are multifunctional combat aircraft systems capable of solving a wide range of tasks both by air and by land.
The F-15EX has more capabilities for working on ground targets. Compared to our Su-35, the “American” looks like about 60/40. We can say that the F-15EX occupies an intermediate position between the Su-34 and Su-35. He has excellent fighter capabilities, but a little more drums.
It should be noted that the “American” has a much larger selection of aircraft weapons for solving certain combat missions. This is especially true of combat work on ground targets.
On the Advanced Eagle, a huge amount of weapons can be suspended in comparison with similar military vehicles in class. In this regard, we still have to work hard to eliminate this imbalance.
As for the airborne radar station of both machines, the active phased array used in the F-15EX radar is certainly an advantage, and a big one. Especially in those areas that are currently of increasing importance.
First of all, this concerns noise immunity in the conditions of the enemy conducting intense electronic warfare and the possibility of simultaneously conducting combat work on air and ground targets.
Nevertheless, the Su-35 and F-15EX are comparable in their characteristics combat aircraft systems. But both cars do not compete with each other, not only in the framework of the upcoming Indian tender, they do not compete in any of the world aviation markets.
For example, the F-16 is sold to almost everyone who expresses a desire to purchase this combat vehicle. And the F-15 is supplied by the United States to a very limited circle of countries. At one time, it was sold only to the closest allies of the United States – for example, Israel, Japan, Saudi Arabia. Then they included South Korea and Singapore.
Source:- Military Magazine