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Showing posts from March, 2011

How China’s Jets Threaten Russia

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By Richard WeitzThe China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, better known as ‘Airshow China,’ used to see Russian arms dealers descend on the event to peddle their wares to potential Chinese customers. Held every other year in the city of Zhuhai, the Russians were eager to persuade potential Chinese customers to part with their cash.But last month, few Russian sellers showed up. Their absence is part of a broader trend in defence ties between the two nations, a trend that has seen a dip in the volume of Russian sales of military equipment and technologies to China.Up until a few years ago, Beijing was buying large quantities of Moscow’s surplus Soviet-era military products, including expensive tanks, warships and warplanes. But over the last few years, the Chinese have declined to sign contracts for any major weapons systems from Russia, while the dwindling number of major weapons systems China now receives are items that Beijing purchased years ago.All this leaves China…

Sukhoi T-50/I-21/Article 701 PAK-FA Sukhoi T-10/Su-27/30/33/35/35S/37 Flanker

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Firstprototype of the PAK-FA during an early test flight, January 2010. Intended to replace the Flanker series, the PAK-FA improves upon the superlative aerodynamic and kinematic performance of the Flanker, but adds competitive Very Low Observable capability, until recently unique to United States designs (Sukhoi image).

The emergence of the Russian Sukhoi T-50 / PAK-FA (Перспективный Авиационный Комплекс Фронтовой Авиации), the intended replacement for the T-10 Flanker series, marks the end of the United States' quarter century long monopoly on the design of Very Low Observable (VLO) or stealth aircraft. Designed to compete against the F-22 in traditional Beyond Visual Range (BVR) and Within Visual Range (WVR) air combat, the PAK-FA shares all of the key fifth generation attributes until now unique to the F-22 - stealth, supersonic cruise, thrust vectoring, highly integrated avionics and a powerful suite of active and passive sensors. While the PAK-FA firmly qualifies as a fifth g…