Moscow: Russia expects to begin test flights of the fifth generation fighter plane in 2009, while talks are underway for Indian involvement in the project codenamed “prospective frontline aircraft”.
“The first flight has been tentatively set for 2009,” head of the United Aircraft Corporation Alexei Fyodorov told Russian media.
During President Vladimir Putin’s India visit in January last, New Delhi and Moscow had reached a political decision to jointly develop the fifth generation fighter on the basis of a project prepared by Sukhoi design bureau.
The two sides are currently negotiating on the financial aspects of the agreement as Moscow has proposed to invest part of the rupee debt New Delhi owes to Russia.
The fifth generation fighter will be equipped with new engines capable of imparting thrust for accelerating its speed in seconds from zero to Mach-2 (twice the speed of sound), Radio Mayak reported.
According to it, smart ammunition and beyond visual range missiles capable of “hitting a nail” are being developed for arming the new fighter, which would also have stealth features based on Russian “cold plasma” technology capable of absorbing radar signals.