Russia's defence export agency Rosoboronexport has unveiled the Su-57E, the export variant of its fifth-generation fighter aircraft, at the MAKS international air show. Russia said the latest aircraft is a priority in marketing plans and preliminary negotiations for foreign buyers will start.
"Su-57E is the product for export. Now it will start preliminary negotiations with a potential client on this subject," Dmitry Shugaev, Director General of Russia's federal service of military-technical cooperation, told reporters on Wednesday at the air show. He said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has showcased the aircraft on Tuesday, the opening day of the ongoing six-day air show.
However, he said, there is no formal application from any country to acquire the aircraft as of now and the process will be undertaken accordingly whenever there is a formal proposal from any foreign buyer. The MAKS air show will conclude on September 1. The Su-57E aircraft is developed by Sukhoi, a subsidiary of the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), and is manufactured by Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aircraft Plant (K?AAP).
It is a fifth-generation multi-role aircraft designed to accomplish a wide range of missions against air, ground and surface targets. It can be used in any weather, day or night, and in a severe jamming environment. Its main advantages compared with 4th generation aircraft systems are stealth due to a reduced radar and infrared signature, high immunity of both avionics and aircraft armament system, as well as a strong supersonic cruise capability.
The latest Russian fighter surpasses 4++ generation aircraft in terms of multi-mission capability, automation and artificial intelligence technologies. Apart from destroying the enemy's air defence system or surface targets, it can monitor airspace from large distances from its bases and can engage the enemy's airspace control system. The first flight of the Su-57E occurred on January 29, 2010, in Komsomolsk-on-Amur.
In 2017, the production of Su-57 prototypes was completed as a part of the work to create the fifth generation aviation complex and its systems. Currently, there are ten prototypes flying undergoing flight tests. All components of the Su-57 have been tested. The on-board equipment and combat application of the armament complex were tested during real combat operations in Syria.
The Su572 flying laboratory has begun testing a new generation engine, with reduced fuel consumption and increased thrust, which is subsequently planned to be installed on production aircraft.
In 2018, the first contract has been signed for the supply of an initial production lot of Su-57 fighters for the Russian air force.