Triangular Rivalry: F-22, F-35, and Su-57 – A Comparative Analysis of Fifth-Generation Fighters

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The F-22 Raptor versus the Sukhoi Su-57 Felon comparison is a fascinating study of two fifth-generation fighters that epitomize the pinnacle of current military aviation technology from the United States and Russia, respectively. Both aircraft are designed with the latest advancements in stealth, avionics, and performance capabilities, representing the strategic priorities and technological philosophies of their nations’ defense sectors. Despite their shared classification, the journey, performance, and operational status of each aircraft diverge significantly, highlighting the differences in their design, deployment, and potential combat effectiveness.

Technological Marvels and Tactical Giants

The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, as the first operational fifth-generation fighter, set a high bar for air superiority with its introduction into service in 2005. Designed primarily for air dominance, the Raptor incorporates stealth, advanced radar and sensors, and supercruise abilities, allowing it to operate at supersonic speeds without afterburners. Its development was marked by ambitious goals and substantial financial investment, reflecting the U.S. military’s emphasis on maintaining air superiority. Despite the initial plan to produce a fleet of 750, budget constraints and shifts in strategic focus led to a cap at 187 units. The Raptor’s role not only encompasses air-to-air combat but also extends to ground attack, electronic warfare, and intelligence-gathering, showcasing its versatile capabilities within the modern battlespace.

Conversely, Russia’s Su-57, also known as Felon by NATO, represents Moscow’s answer to the challenge of fifth-generation fighter technology. Initiating its first flight in 2010, the Su-57 aimed to embody similar advancements in stealth, speed, and integrated avionics. However, its development path has been fraught with delays, budgetary constraints, and operational setbacks, including the loss of an aircraft in a 2020 crash. Despite these hurdles, the Su-57 aspires to fulfill a broad range of roles, from air superiority to ground and maritime strike missions, much like its American counterpart.

Comparative Analysis: Capabilities on Paper and in Practice

In comparing the F-22 and Su-57, several key areas of performance and technology are worth highlighting. Both aircraft boast impressive top speeds, supercruise capabilities, and advanced stealth technologies designed to minimize their radar cross-sections. However, the F-22 is often credited with superior maneuverability and more mature stealth capabilities, reflecting its longer operational history and the extensive investments made in refining its design.

The Sukhoi su-57

The Su-57, while newer and benefiting from subsequent advancements in fighter jet technology, is perceived to lag behind in stealth compared to the F-22 and even other fifth-generation fighters like the F-35. This assessment stems from analyses of its design features and observable technologies, suggesting that while it incorporates stealth characteristics, it may not achieve the same level of radar invisibility as its American counterparts.

Despite these comparisons, the operational effectiveness of both aircraft depends on a myriad of factors beyond mere technical specifications. Pilot training, strategic deployment, and the integration of these fighters within a broader network of military assets are critical to maximizing their combat potential. The F-22’s decades of operational experience and integration into U.S. and allied military exercises provide it with a proven combat record, whereas the Su-57’s capabilities and tactical value remain largely untested in real-world conflicts.

Prospects and Strategic Implications

The ongoing development and potential deployment of the Su-57, especially in the context of Russia’s military activities and export ambitions, raise significant questions about the future balance of airpower. While the F-22 remains a cornerstone of U.S. air dominance, its production halt and the shift towards the F-35 for future needs suggest a strategic realignment towards multirole capabilities and international collaboration.

In contrast, the Su-57’s trajectory reflects Russia’s continued pursuit of a fifth-generation fighter that can compete on the global stage and offer a counterpoint to Western airpower. However, the practical challenges of production, budget constraints, and the technological gaps identified by analysts temper expectations about its ability to directly challenge the established superiority of the F-22 or F-35.

As the global landscape of aerial warfare evolves with new technologies and doctrines, the comparison between the F-22 Raptor and the Su-57 Felon underscores the complexities of achieving and maintaining air superiority. While the F-22’s legacy as a pioneering fifth-generation fighter is secure, the future role and impact of the Su-57 remain to be fully realized, dependent on Russia’s ability to overcome the challenges that have so far hindered its path to operational prominence.

The Untouchable Air Superiority: Unveiling Why the F-22 Raptor Remains U.S.-Exclusive

In the dynamic realm of military aviation, the F-22 Raptor stands as a paragon of air dominance, embodying a leap in the evolution of fighter jets with unparalleled capabilities. Since its inception, the Raptor has been a symbol of American air superiority, equipped with advanced stealth technology, supercruise capability, sensor fusion, and exceptional maneuverability. Despite its celebrated status and the potential strategic advantage it could offer to allies, the F-22 has remained an asset exclusively within the U.S. Air Force’s arsenal. The reasons behind this decision are multifaceted, deeply rooted in legislative actions, strategic considerations, and the inherent characteristics of the aircraft itself.

The narrative of the F-22 Raptor, developed by Lockheed Martin, began in the early 1980s when the U.S. Air Force identified a need for a new tactical fighter that could harness emerging technologies, notably stealth. This was a time when the global military balance was acutely sensitive, and the U.S. sought to maintain a qualitative edge. The development of the Raptor was not just about advancing military technology but also about securing a strategic advantage. By the time the Raptor was officially introduced in 1997, it had already been envisioned as a cornerstone of U.S. air superiority strategy, a role it has fulfilled admirably, especially marked by its operational debut in Operation Inherent Resolve in 2014.

However, despite international interest and the potential benefits of sharing such a platform with allies, the F-22 has been kept out of the global arms market. The pivotal moment came in 1998 when the 105th Congress, influenced by concerns over safeguarding the technological marvels embodied by the F-22, enacted legislation prohibiting the sale of the Raptor to foreign governments. This legislation, sponsored by Representative David R. Obey, was enshrined in the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, under section 8103, stating, “None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to approve or license the sale of the F-22 advanced tactical fighter to any foreign government.”

This legislative barrier was not solely an act of protectionism but a strategic maneuver to ensure the technological secrets and the tactical advantages of the F-22 remained exclusively in American hands. The considerations were not just about operational security but also about the practical implications of maintaining such an advanced fleet. Initially, plans had called for a much larger fleet of F-22s, but production was ultimately limited to approximately one-quarter of the intended number, further complicating the feasibility of international sales.

Despite these restrictions, the allure of the F-22’s capabilities has not waned among U.S. allies. Notable instances of expressed interest from countries like Japan and Australia underscore the global recognition of the F-22’s unmatched capabilities. Japan, for instance, faced with the daunting prospect of developing a comparable fighter, found the costs prohibitively high, a sentiment likely shared by other nations. However, the U.S. government and military leadership have remained steadfast in their stance, emphasizing the importance of keeping the F-22 for national and strategic security.

Parallel to the narrative of the F-22 is the development and deployment of the F-35 Lightning II, a fifth-generation multirole fighter designed with international partnership in mind. The F-35 program represents a different approach to military technology sharing, offering a platform that, while not as specialized in air superiority roles as the F-22, provides a versatile capability suited to a broad spectrum of missions. With countries like Japan becoming major importers of the F-35, the U.S. has managed to equip its allies with advanced fifth-generation technology without compromising the exclusivity and strategic advantage of the F-22 Raptor.

As the F-22 continues to undergo enhancements through initiatives like the Raptor Agile Capability Release, aiming to bolster its performance and capabilities into the late 2020s, it is clear that the aircraft remains a critical asset in the U.S. military’s strategic calculus. With an investment of approximately $19.5 billion earmarked for its development, the F-22 Raptor’s legacy as a premier air superiority fighter is assured. Yet, it is equally clear that, despite its technological prowess and the potential strategic value it could offer to allies, the F-22 Raptor is set to remain an untouchable asset, firmly held within the dominion of the United States Air Force.

The F-22 Raptor: Spearheading USAF’s Indo/Asia-Pacific Strategy Through Advanced Capabilities and Continuous Enhancements

The F-22 Raptor stands as the pinnacle of aerial combat technology, embodying the United States Air Force’s (USAF) strategic edge in the Indo/Asia-Pacific region. This state-of-the-art fighter jet integrates a formidable combination of stealth, long-range supercruise, and multitarget engagement capabilities, solidifying its position as a critical asset in modern warfare. The aircraft’s advanced flight controls and high-performance thrust-vectoring engine afford it unparalleled maneuverability, allowing for extreme agility in air-to-air and air-to-ground missions.

Equipped with an array of sophisticated features, the F-22’s cockpit boasts six LCD color displays, providing pilots with essential flight and tactical information. Its APG-77 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, Electronic Warfare (EW) system with Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) and missile launch detection capabilities, along with advanced communication, navigation, and data link systems, underscore the aircraft’s technological dominance. These capabilities ensure the Raptor’s effectiveness in engaging and neutralizing threats before they can react, maintaining the USAF’s “first-shot, first-kill” advantage.

In anticipation of future aerial combat challenges, the USAF is proactively enhancing the F-22’s capabilities. Recent developments include the completion of Increment 3.2B software upgrades, which introduce high-resolution ground mapping Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), threat geolocation, Electronic Attack (EA) capability, and integration of advanced munitions like the Small Diameter Bomb I (SDB I), AIM-120D, and AIM-9X. This agile approach to upgrades enables the rapid development, testing, and fielding of new technologies, ensuring the Raptor remains ahead of evolving threats.

Moreover, the integration of technologies developed for the Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) fighter into the F-22 highlights a forward-thinking strategy to bolster the Raptor’s capabilities until the NGAD becomes operational in the 2030s. Current efforts focus on adding Infrared Search and Track (IRST) systems for stealthy airborne threat detection and engagement, as well as designing stealthy external fuel tanks and pylons to extend the aircraft’s range without refueling.

The USAF is also committed to enhancing the F-22’s operational reliability and network compatibility through the Reliability, Availability, and Maintainability Program (RAMP), and the incorporation of Link 16 and Identification, Friend or Foe (IFF) enhancements. RAMP initiatives aim to improve the aircraft’s electrical power systems, replace avionic fiber optics, and upgrade its Low Observable (LO) characteristics and structural integrity. The adoption of Link 16, facilitated by the Multifunctional Information Distribution System/Joint Tactical Radio System (MIDS/JTRS), will enable seamless two-way networking with legacy aircraft, enhancing the Raptor’s interoperability within the USAF fleet. These upgrades are set to commence fleetwide in Fiscal Year 2025 (FY25), following initial installations that began in FY22.

Amidst these advancements, the USAF proposed the retirement of noncombat-coded Block 20 Raptors in FY23 to reallocate funds towards the NGAD project, retaining only the modernized Block 30/35 variants. However, Congressional intervention has paused this initiative, pending a thorough cost-benefit analysis of upgrading Block 20 aircraft to full combat capability. Additionally, the relocation of F-22 formal training from Eglin AFB to a new permanent base at Langley in 2023 marks a significant milestone in the program’s evolution. This move, necessitated by the damage inflicted by Hurricane Michael at Tyndall AFB, signifies a new chapter in the F-22’s operational history, ensuring its continued dominance in the skies.

As the USAF forges ahead with its strategic vision for the Indo/Asia-Pacific theater, the F-22 Raptor remains at the forefront, embodying the cutting-edge of aerial warfare technology. Through continuous upgrades and enhancements, the Raptor is poised to maintain its superiority against emerging threats, playing a pivotal role in ensuring national security and global stability.

F-22 Raptor data sheet

  • Contractors: Lockheed Martin; Boeing (production partner).
  • First Flight: Sept. 7, 1997.
  • Delivered: Oct. 23, 2002-May 2, 2012.
  • IOC: Dec. 15, 2005.
  • Production: 195.
  • Inventory: 185.
  • Operator: ACC, AFMC, AFRC (associate), PACAF, ANG.
  • Aircraft Location: Edwards AFB, Calif.; JB Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska; JB Langley-Eustis, Va.; JB Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii; Nellis AFB, Nev
  • Active Variant: •F-22A. Fifth-generation air dominance fighter.
  • Dimensions: Span 44.5 ft, length 62 ft, height 16.6 ft.
  • Weight: Max T-O 83,500 lb.
  • Power Plant: Two Pratt & Whitney F119-PW-100 turbofans, each 35,000 lb thrust.
  • Performance: Speed Mach 2 with supercruise capability, ferry range 1,850+ miles with two external wing fuel tanks (farther with air refueling).
  • Ceiling: Above 50,000 ft.
  • Armament: One internal M61A2 20 mm gun (480 rds); two AIM-9 Sidewinders inside internal weapons bays; six AIM-120 AMRAAMs (air-to-air loadout) or two AIM-120s and two GBU-32 JDAMs or eight SDBs (air-toground loadout) in main internal weapons bay.
  • Accommodation: Pilot on ACES II zero/zero ejection seat.

The Evolution and Capabilities of the F-35A Lightning II: The Cornerstone of Modern Airpower

The F-35A Lightning II represents a pivotal advancement in military aviation, embodying the zenith of current technological capabilities in a single aircraft. Developed by Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, this fifth-generation fighter jet is designed to meet the multifaceted demands of modern warfare, offering unmatched versatility, stealth, and performance. The F-35A variant, in particular, is engineered for conventional take-off and landing (CTOL), making it a versatile asset for the United States Air Force (USAF) and its allied counterparts.

Unparalleled Design and Stealth Capabilities

The design of the F-35A integrates state-of-the-art stealth technology, enabling it to operate undetected in hostile environments. Its airframe and materials are tailored to minimize radar cross-section, allowing the aircraft to penetrate air defenses undetected. This low observability is complemented by advanced electronic warfare systems that enhance the pilot’s situational awareness and survivability in contested airspace. The aircraft’s internal weapon bays contribute to its stealth profile, allowing it to carry a lethal payload while maintaining a low radar signature.

Advanced Avionics and Weaponry

Equipped with the latest in avionics technology, the F-35A features the AN/APG-81 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar and the AN/AAQ-37 Distributed Aperture System (DAS), providing a comprehensive view of the battlespace. These systems, coupled with an advanced electronic warfare suite and the Multifunction Advanced Data Link (MADL), ensure the pilot can detect and engage threats before they are aware of the F-35’s presence. The aircraft’s armament includes the internally-mounted GAU-22/A Equalizer gun, capable of delivering precise firepower against ground targets, and an array of missiles and bombs accommodated in its internal and external pylons.

Engine Performance and Operational Range

The heart of the F-35A is the Pratt & Whitney F135 engine, a marvel of engineering that provides the thrust necessary for supersonic speeds up to Mach 1.6. This engine, an evolution of the F119 used in the F-22 Raptor, offers a perfect blend of power and efficiency, enabling the F-35A to achieve a combat radius of over 1,093 kilometers and a maximum range of 2,200 kilometers on internal fuel. The F-35A’s engine and fuel capacity allow for extended operations without the need for mid-air refueling, enhancing its strategic flexibility.

Global Adoption and Impact

The adoption of the F-35A by the USAF and allied nations reflects a significant shift towards fifth-generation fighter capabilities globally. Countries such as Japan and Israel have chosen the F-35A to modernize their air forces, citing its advanced technology and multi-role capabilities as key factors in their decision. The F-35A is set to replace older aircraft like the F-16 Fighting Falcon and the A-10 Thunderbolt II, with the USAF planning to acquire 1,763 units by 2034. This widespread adoption underscores the F-35A’s role as a cornerstone of future airpower, promising to redefine air combat dynamics for decades to come.

The F-35A Lightning II stands as a testament to human ingenuity and technological advancement, offering a blend of stealth, agility, and firepower unmatched by any other fighter aircraft in operation. Its development and deployment mark a new era in air warfare, where stealth and advanced electronics dominate the battlefield. As the F-35A continues to evolve and adapt to new challenges, it will undoubtedly play a central role in shaping the future of global airpower.

  • General Characteristics
  • Primary Function: Multirole fighter
  • Prime Contractor: Lockheed Martin
  • Power Plant: One Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100 turbofan engine
  • Thrust: 43,000 pounds
  • Wingspan: 35 feet (10.7 meters)
  • Length: 51 feet (15.7 meters)
  • Height: 14 feet (4.38 meters)
  • Maximum Takeoff Weight: 70,000 pound class
  • Fuel Capacity: Internal: 18,498 pounds
  • Payload: 18,000 pounds (8,160 kilograms)
  • Speed: Mach 1.6 (~1,200 mph)
  • Range: More than 1,350 miles with internal fuel (1,200+ nautical miles), unlimited with aerial refueling
  • Ceiling: Above 50,000 feet (15 kilometers)
  • Armament: Internal and external capability. Munitions carried vary based on mission requirements.
  • Crew: One

Sukhoi Su-57 Felon Fighter Jet, Russia: A Detailed Overview

The Sukhoi Su-57 Felon stands as a cornerstone of modern aerial warfare capabilities for Russia, embodying the pinnacle of fifth-generation fighter technology. Developed by the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), a subsidiary of the state-owned defense behemoth Rostec, the Su-57 Felon is engineered to dominate the skies by engaging a wide array of targets across land, air, and sea. This multi-role stealth fighter jet merges cutting-edge avionics, sophisticated stealth capabilities, and formidable armament to deliver unmatched battlefield superiority.

Genesis and Evolution

The inception of the Su-57 Felon traces back to the Sukhoi Design Bureau, a prestigious entity within UAC, marking a significant milestone in Russian aviation history. The aircraft’s journey from concept to reality was showcased during its maiden flight at the Gromov Flight Testing Institute’s airfield in October 2022, a testament to its advanced design and engineering. Lasting 56 minutes, this inaugural flight underscored the Su-57’s operational efficiency and readiness. Prior to this, the fighter jet was rigorously tested under combat conditions in Syria in 2018, affirming its capabilities in real-world scenarios.

The Russian Air Force, as the primary beneficiary of this advanced fighter jet, has actively deployed the Su-57 Felon in various capacities, including special military operations. Notably, in 2022, it played a critical role in operations against Ukraine, showcasing its long-range missile capabilities in both air-to-surface and air-to-air engagements.

Procurement and Production Milestones

The journey from prototype to frontline service has been marked by significant contracts and production achievements. In August 2018, a landmark contract was signed for the delivery of the first two Su-57 jets by 2020. This was further expanded at the Army 2019 international arms exhibition, where an agreement for 76 Su-57 fighter jets was unveiled, signaling a robust commitment to bolstering Russia’s aerial combat capabilities.

Serial production commenced in July 2019 at the UAC’s Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aircraft Plant, culminating in the delivery of the first operational Su-57, equipped with a first-stage engine, to the Russian Air Force in December 2020. This milestone was followed by the delivery of four additional jets in 2021, with plans to integrate the second-stage engine variants into the fleet starting in 2022. The strategic roadmap envisions a fleet expansion to 22 Su-57 jets by late 2024, ultimately reaching a total of 76 by 2028.

Design and Features: A Technological Marvel

The Su-57 Felon’s design philosophy embodies the essence of fifth-generation fighter technology, with a strong emphasis on stealth, agility, and multi-role capability. Its construction utilizes a blend of composite materials, including polymer, fiber-glass, and aluminum honeycomb fillers, to achieve low radar cross-section and infrared signature, facilitating undetected operations in enemy airspace. Additionally, the aircraft’s 3D thrust vectoring jets enhance its maneuverability, enabling short take-offs and sustained supersonic cruise.

Avionics and Armament: The Edge in Aerial Warfare

Equipped with a state-of-the-art avionics suite, the Su-57 features a high degree of automation and intelligent crew support systems. This includes the “electronic second pilot” – a powerful onboard computer designed to streamline operations and enhance mission effectiveness. The integration of active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar and electronic intelligence (ELINT) systems further augment its situational awareness and combat efficiency.

The Su-57’s armament capabilities are equally impressive, equipped with a versatile array of air-to-surface and air-to-air missiles, complemented by 30mm cannons for close-quarters combat. Its internal weapons bays can accommodate up to four K-77M air-to-air missiles, ensuring the Felon can engage a variety of targets without compromising its stealth profile.

Engine and Performance

Powering the Su-57 is a pair of advanced turbofan engines, initially the Izdeliye 117 or AL-41F1, with plans to transition to the more powerful Izdeliye 30 engines in future production batches. This propulsion system enables the aircraft to achieve speeds of up to Mach 2 without afterburners, offering a blend of speed, agility, and operational range up to 3,500km at subsonic speeds, embodying the pinnacle of Russian aerospace engineering and tactical thought.

The Sukhoi Su-57 Felon’s development and deployment signify a leap forward in Russia’s military aviation capabilities, positioning it as a key player on the global stage. With ongoing enhancements and operational deployments, the Su-57 continues to evolve, reflecting the dynamic nature of modern aerial warfare and Russia’s strategic ambitions in the domain.

Sukhoi Su-57 Felon Technical Data Sheet

The Sukhoi Su-57, originally designated as the PAK FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation), represents a significant leap in Russian military aviation, aiming to fulfill the roles of both air superiority and ground attack. This twin-engine stealth fighter was conceived to supplant the aging fleets of MiG-29 and Su-27, positioning itself as Russia’s counter to the American F-22 Raptor. The Su-57’s journey from conceptualization to development underscores a comprehensive effort to advance Russia’s aerial combat capabilities into the fifth-generation of fighter aircraft.

Development Timeline and Operational History

  • 2001: Initiation of the Su-57 development project.
  • 2010: The T-50 prototype, a precursor to the Su-57, completes its maiden flight, signaling the transition from design to tangible reality.
  • 2014: Delivery of a pre-production prototype to the Russian Air Force for extensive trials and evaluations.
  • 2015: Completion of initial trials, with plans for the aircraft to achieve operational status between 2017 and 2018, and full operational capability by 2020. However, challenges related to technical issues, systems development, and funding delayed full-scale production.
  • 2017: Official designation of the aircraft as Su-57. By this time, production faced delays due to unresolved technical and developmental issues.
  • 2018: Deployment of pre-production Su-57 fighters in Syria and the construction of at least 9 aircraft, including prototypes and pre-production models.
  • 2019: The Russian Air Force orders the first batch of 76 Su-57 fighters, marking the commencement of full-scale production despite a setback from a crash during a test flight, attributed to control system failure.
  • 2022: Delivery of the first production Su-57 fighters to the Russian Air Force, with total deliveries expected to reach 76 aircraft by 2028.

Technical Specifications

Design and Stealth Features

  • Layout: Conventional, with advanced stealth shaping to deflect radar waves.
  • Radar Cross Section: 0.1 m², offering reduced visibility to radar when compared to previous Russian fighter models but not as stealthy as the F-22 or F-35.
  • Weapons Storage: Internal bays designed to maintain stealth profile, with two large tandem bays between the engines and additional sidebays for short-range missiles.

Propulsion

  • Initial Engines: Saturn 117S (AL-41F1S) engines, producing 86.3 kN dry thrust and 142 kN with afterburners, shared with the Su-35S.
  • Upgraded Engines: First flight utilized new, more powerful Saturn engines, with estimated afterburning thrust of 175 kN, enabling supercruise capabilities.

Armament

  • Internal and External Hardpoints: 10 internal and 6 external stations for a diverse array of ordnance.
  • Ordnance Capacity: Up to 7,500 kg, supporting air-to-air missiles (R-74M, R-77M), air-to-surface missiles (Kh-38M), anti-ship missiles (Kh-31AD, Kh-35U), anti-radiation missiles (Kh-31PD, Kh-58UShK), and guided bombs (KAB-250, KAB-500, KAB-1500).
  • Future Armaments: Potential to carry the BRAHMOS NG cruise missile upon availability.
  • Cannon: Equipped with a single-barrel 30 mm cannon, capable of firing at 1,500 rounds per minute.

Variants

  • Export Proposals: The Su-57 is being offered to international customers, though no exports had occurred by the end of 2023.
  • Twin-Seater Version: Planned development of a two-seat variant to meet specific operational requirements.

Operational Considerations

Despite its advanced design and capabilities, the Su-57 has faced scrutiny regarding its classification as a true fifth-generation fighter, with some critiques highlighting technological and operational shortfalls compared to Western counterparts. Additionally, the initial partnership with India for the HAL FGFA variant, intended to result in the acquisition of up to 250 units, was terminated by India in 2018 due to unmet expectations in stealth, avionics, and sensor capabilities.

The Sukhoi Su-57 represents a pivotal evolution in Russian military aviation, aiming to blend stealth, advanced avionics, and formidable armament into a multi-role platform. Despite challenges in development, production, and operational deployment, the Su-57 continues to be a key component of Russia’s strategic air capabilities, with ongoing efforts to enhance its performance and address its shortcomings.

  • Avionics: Sh-121 multifunctional integrated radio electronic system (MIRES), 101KS Atoll electro-optical targeting system
CREW1
 ENGINE2 x AL-41F1 turbofans with thrust vectoring
 WEIGHTS
  Take-off weight35000 kg77162 lb
  Loaded weight29000 kg63934 lb
  Empty weight18000 kg39683 lb
 DIMENSIONS
  Wingspan14.1 m46 ft 3 in
  Length20.1 m66 ft 11 in
  Height4.74 m16 ft 7 in
  Wing area78.8 m2848.20 sq ft
 PERFORMANCE
  Max. speed2120 km/h1317 mph
  Cruise speed1710 km/h1063 mph
  Ceiling20000 m65600 ft
  Rate of climb350 m/min1150 ft/min
  Range3500 km2175 miles
  Range w/max.fuel4500 km2796 miles
 ARMAMENT1 x 30mm GSh-30-1 cannon, 6 internal + 6 external hardpoints

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