The situation in the Air Force and Air Defense of the Russian Federation, in my opinion, is becoming increasingly unclear and contradictory. Although specifically in this area is the Russian industry more competitive. Our aircraft and anti-aircraft missile systems, in contrast to the armored vehicles and naval equipment in the main are at their most advanced positions in the world.
Together with the fact there is no clear concept of development of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation as a whole and of each of the species, type of troops at a time. This is a consequence of the very poor state of Russian military science, which is no longer able to do even a descriptive function, not to mention the analytics and forecasting, which can drive the air force and air defense to a dead end, even with a certain amount of high quality "iron".
It is necessary not 66, and 150 divisions
The easiest way how to develop ground-based air defenses, primarily because there specifically "hardware" rather than a concept. Defense, by definition, passive, in its puzzle comes "only" shoot down anything that flies. In other words, to possess anti-aircraft missile systems, designed for destruction of existing and promising aircraft of different classes.
Yet here we also have a mass of problems particularly conceptual character, as evidenced by an angry debate over what should be the aerospace defense of. Apparently, the SAI will be created on the basis of Gallakticheskih troops. The solution is highly non-obvious, taking into account that they did not have and do not have any experience of fund management failure.
With the "iron" is also a huge number of ambiguities, for example it is very difficult to predict whether we have a 2020 56 battalions of S-400 and 10 battalions of S-500 has been officially promised. In addition, to provide truly reliable defense, aerospace defense of the country will come in handy more than 100 battalions of S-400 and 50 battalions of S-500.
In addition, there is another question. Very basically have the means to defeat hypersonic and gallakticheskih goals that focus on new air defense missile systems. But that will be created to deal with mikroBPLA? Curiously, wondering whether anyone in general this question?
Vpribavok we need not only to be able to shoot down alien drones, and eventually begin to build their own. Namely, all reconnaissance aircraft should only be unmanned, with no this is impossible in principle to implement the concept of network-centric warfare. There are serious doubts that our military management is the recognition of this fact. Russian unmanned technology is developing quite haphazard and, apparently, in the main due to interest in developing companies. In Israel acquired the UAV in-1's, not the latest, in-2, we do not get access to the technologies of their production and service units, which is surprising, considering how much leverage over the country is our homeland.
And the little bombers
Moreover, the trends are that the majority of all combat aircraft (first assault) will become unmanned. In the United States and China are appropriate Stakhanovite work rate. We have not seen anything like it, except for the semi-mythical migovskogo "Stingray", which, in general, has officially cut off completely so in the name of the virtual project impact drone Sukhoi. In general, a manned attack aircraft for the substitution of the Su-25 is also not visible, the modernization of the aircraft to the Su-25SM is a microscopically pace. But anti-aircraft we need to fully forthcoming Far Eastern Front. As for other means of combat tanks — attack helicopters, in connection with this hunt only say one thing: Army (helicopter) aircraft should be returned as soon as possible in the Army.
Contract START-3 provokes Russia and the U.S. to develop strategic aircraft (according to the document as a bomber counts as one charge). Its cars are comfortable that they, unlike other 2-component of the strategic nuclear forces can be used in ordinary wars — and as carriers of a huge number of ALCM, and as a vehicle for purposes of meaningful amount of bombs (or heavy weapons). How unfortunate it did not sound, no substitution of the Tu-95 and Tu-160 is not expected, because the Tupolev, it seems, is in ruin. Suffice exotic project combining IL-76 with a cruise missile Club is unlikely to give up the present successor of strategic bombers, although in general this idea is very exciting. Even then only need to download the An-124 missiles, more fit.
If you recall the front-line bomber, the Su-34 will not be an adequate substitute for the Su-24, for comparison of performance characteristics of these machines indicates that in fact one of the Su-34 in the course of combat flight is equivalent to only two Su-24. In this case, quite naturally: the cycle of the first ground handling not decreased by 5-10 times, hard work and his crew can not rise by 5-10 times. That's why the replacement 500 Su-24 must be purchased 200-300 Su-34, and not 58 or 32 (according to the official data, which sprawl).
Given the experience of the U.S.
In the area of fighter aircraft, which remains in the foreseeable future manned, we would seem to most to be proud of. Our home has an excellent fighter of the 4 + and 4 + + (Su-30 and Su-35), is actively working on the fighter of the 5th generation. And here all versatile.
It's not even the fact that the T-50 is not yet vsepolnotsennym plane 5th generation (non-modified engine and avionics), and that we are right for the Yankees, it is entirely possible, come to a standstill. But because of the lag in this way are able to draw conclusions from overseas experience, which does not give particular cause for optimism.
Creating a languid fighter F-22 "Raptor" is actually completed. Instead of the initially planned 750 machines of this type are the U.S. Air Force will total 183. With all this on his predecessor, the F-15 "Eagle" He has a really vast an advantage only on one parameter — value: 300-400 million dollars against 30-50 million. But rocket "air-" (the same AIM-120 and AIM-9) F-22 is 1.5 times smaller than the F-15. It is worth noting that the U.S. Air Force was almost nine hundred F-15A-D (There are now less 300) because 183 F-22 is unlikely they will be able to change it.
It is believed that the "Raptor" is more tenacious because of their own invisibility. And the survival of "Needle", despite the fact that there is nothing "stelsovskogo" no complaints have been reported, no 1st confirmed fact of loss of the aircraft in aerial combat, though he went through a lot of wars. In addition, the F-22 is no longer invisible, just turn on the radar. These machines sverhizbytochny quality to counter with a weak enemy, but for war with a powerful enemy in their number is clearly insufficient. In the end, the question arises: Is the game worth the candle, taking into account the exorbitant cost of applets?
In general, F-22 even entered service. With a light fighter F-35, which must be purchased in the amount of change in 2443 and the Air Force and U.S. Navy aircraft as many as four types of aircraft (F-16, A-10, AV-8, F/A-18), the situation is even worse. His enacting already very much behind schedule because of the huge number of technical problems, and the cost has exceeded all reasonable limits, passed for 100 million dollars instead of the initially anticipated 20-30 million. And it is obvious that in their performance characteristics of the machine fundamentally outshine
its predecessors. In the naval aviation obviously thought about what to even turn away from the F-35 in favor of the F/A-18E/F and combat drone X-47B.
In Russia, a light fighter of the 5th generation, apparently, not even in a project that may be and to the best. Means the purchase, or 60, or 150 T-50. The first of these figures generally resembles a parody which tasks can be solved so many planes? And 150 is also not normal is not enough. For the sake of this number, it is not necessary to invest a lot of money into the project. There will be exactly the same effect as with the F-22: for small wars this plane become redundant in quality for large — the number of the missing. If the car made only in order to show that we are not horrible people, then it is quite stupid.
Unfortunately, waste and more than a cheap fighter of the previous generation, we also meant to receive a minimum. The Su-35 will buy only 50-60 units. Same class of light fighters, it seems, simply die out after the write end-of-the MiG-29.
What did I need?
In general, the most appropriate course of events in 2020 in the tactical aircraft we will have 300-400 cars of all types (Sou-24M2 and Su-25SM, Su-34, Su-27SM, Su-30, Su-35 and T-50, which will also become any Cy) in a strategic — 40-50. Quite obviously, that given the size of the country to conduct a war, even a severe one strategic direction so many planes quite unrealistic. It is not clear from what generally comes our military and political governance, planning the development of the Air Force? To reflect what threats they intend to use it? Against Georgia, they will be redundant, against the United States or China — totally inadequate. In general, such a situation we have with other types of aircraft.
Questions appear not only at the number, and quality, much less that they are interrelated. Very high quality aircraft in any case are very expensive because they are difficult to do much.
Maybe we should do the heavy fighter — the heir of the MiG-31, an amazing and obviously underestimated the aircraft. In other words, do interceptor with a very strong radar.
This machine (let's call it the MiG-31bis) shall be presented to the following basic requirements: a large range (given the size of the country's area), greater than that of today's MiG-31, the number of long-range missiles "air-air" on board radar providing their application, and capable of detecting "Stealth" at least for a hundred miles.
It is obvious from this plane can not be pursued any stealth or agility, he must win at the expense of range and power of missiles and radar. Since such an interceptor would be a huge advance and languid, it is possible to hang a strong EW equipment that increases the combat abilities of the car. MiG-31bis could be a mini-AWACS, putting through its own radar on the enemy aircraft other fighters who own locators in this case could not be included.
Unfortunately, not many cars will line up either the 1st option languid fighter — the MiG-31bis, Su-30/35, T-50 because of their overhead and limited defense capabilities. Because the problem is cheapest kind of light aircraft, which can be produced in large quantities. MiG-35 will not be a cheap and therefore will not be massive, second with all this on TTX Su-35. Because need it appears essentially unavailable.
It is possible that your loaf should be on the development of the single combat variant of the Yak-130 is not only and not so much as a stormtrooper (what better to do UAV, perhaps on the basis of the same Yak-130), but as a fighter, working in pairs with the MiG-31bis based on its radar. Such a plane would be able to fight well with attack aircraft, helicopters and UAVs opponent. With all of this will be a learning process as simple as possible crews, as it begins to prepare for a two-seater training options such as the Yak-130. It should be the same Yak-130 is many times cheaper at least some Su and MiG.
The creation of these 2-types of fighters, not including strengthening the capacity of the Russian Air Force, will allow to support the existence of OKB Mikoyan and Yakovlev, not allowing the final monopoly Sukhoi, which is detrimental, as well as at least some monopoly, for it leads to decay.
Deputy Director of the Institute of Political and Military Analysis