Su-30MKI fighters — one of the best in its class

In these days of Su-30MKI fighters became an emblem that represents the quality of Russian aircraft. Now in the middle of the obvious success of Russian aircraft industry and to assess the well-wishers, and to assess the opponents, perhaps, only the Mi-17 has earned the latest versions of the same number of positive reviews. In late 2008, after the results were announced the US-French-Indian exercise Red Flag, British aviation magazine Flight proposed to elect the best fighter in the middle of the F-22, Su-30MKI and the F-15. The decision of readers of the 1st of the more notable books of the world was quite sudden. For the Russian Su-30MKI fighters gave their votes to 59% for South American plane 5th generation F-22 — 37%, and for the F-15 — only 4%.

Shred in arms exports

Value estimates is so large "public examination" is increased by the background that the question about the fighter who competes in the global market with more innovative products the United States and Western Europe. Perfectly clear that the struggle for such nice market like India, Algeria, Malaysia, illegal practices do not exist. The smallest logistical and technical shortcomings immediately converted into the mouth of rivals in the unavoidable evils. Despite this, the level of criticism in the address Russian Su-30MKI does not exceed the 'natural' background and plane continues to sell well.

The real results of programs from the Su-30MKI can only call respect. The number of contracted fighters approaching 330, with all this, the number of delivered vehicles — exceeds 230. In addition to the current time of a positive decision on the purchase of an additional batch of India's Su-30MKI aircraft sets for the licensed production at the company's HAL. Given the expansion of defense procurement announcement Russian production aircraft of the family can at the most be about the smallest estimated 400 fighters.

Also noteworthy is the fact that in recent years the supply of functional fighter Su-30MKI measured offer virtually every 6th dollar that comes into Russian by the band export of military products. For a relatively small-sized RPC "Irkut" — a rather harsh result.

The Su-30MKI is the story of creation

Su-30MKI was created on the basis of the Su-27UB, commercially made in Irkutsk and Komsomolsk-on-Amur. The Su-30MKI is a single highly maneuverable fighter aircraft, which designed to gain air superiority, destroy ground and surface targets with guided and unguided missiles, with the ability to support the actions of a group.

The negotiations on the supply of fighter aircraft Su-27 was carried out with India, since 1994. Designing the Design Bureau "dry" fighter for the Indian Air Force Su-30 began in 1995. The main designer of the project was assigned AF Barkovskiy. Already 30 November 1996 the parties signed an interstate agreement on the phased delivery of the Indian Air Force 8 Su-30K and 32 functional double Su-30MKI fighters. The aircraft were to be delivered to India in several lots, with alternate capacity avionics, weapons and power plant. Main contractors of the contract have been identified: in the creation of aircraft design bureau "dry" in the production of fighter aircraft — Irkutsk Aircraft Production Association.

Construction of the first 2 most experienced fighters in the bureau was conducted in 1995-1998. First experienced Su-30I-1, which was finalized on the basis of the Su-30, was built in the spring of 1997. The car went up in the air July 1, 1997, drove her test pilot VY Averianov. Since July 1997, the Design Bureau "dry" embarked on a joint program with the Air Force Test GLITs fighter. Batch creation of modern machines were deployed in Irkutsk in 2000. The first pre-series fighter flight tested at the factory Averyanov November 26, 2000. 3 of the first pre-production of the Su-30MKI were transferred to the Design Bureau and with opytneyshemi aircraft took part in the program of tests.

In accordance with the criteria of the signed contract, procurement and testing of Su-30MKI were carried out in 3 steps. Providing the customer with the first batch of 10 Su-30MKI fighters took place in 2002, the second batch of 12 cars — in 2003. By 2004, the Su-30K and Su-30MKI were rearmed with the 2nd Squadron of Indian Air Force.

The main distinguishing features of the Su-30MKI:

— for the first time in the world series fighter was mounted engine with thrust vector control (AL-31FP made in SEC them. Lyul'ko) is also a remote control that is included in a single control loop. This decision allowed to put into the Su-30MKI ability superagility modes;

-first time in the bureau on the fighter was conducted extensive integration of avionics systems of Russian and imported production. The Su-30MKI was made "international" avionics package, which consisted of systems and systems 14 foreign firms from six countries in the world;

-for the first time in the world to mass-produced cars was installed radar with a rotating phased array ("Leopard" Made Research Institute of Instrument). Besides the fighter was installed new ejection seat K-36D-3, 5, and a number of other Russian development of new systems;

-range aircraft weapons was substantially extended by SD-class "air-air" RVV-AE class "air-land": the X-59M, X-31A / P and H-29L/T/TE also guided bombs KAB- 500 and CC-1500.

Wet pretty wide range of weapons Su-30MKI is able to destroy air targets (including those with small radar signature) in close combat, also lead preemptive battles in the far distance. This multi-purpose fighter can destroy ground and sea targets with guided and unguided weapons in the tactical and operational depth. At the same time, implementation of open architecture avionics can significantly expand the arsenal of weapons used.

First victory of the Su-30MKI

More important indicator deserved prestige of the Su-30MKI as its options for the views of the vast number of professionals were the results of international exercises in which participated more than once the aircraft. The practice of these exercises appeared in 2004, when they took the role of aircraft Sou-30K, designed in the main to gain advantages in the air. A certain number of these fighters who have normal to Su-27/Su-30 of early radar N001 were sold in India in 1997. Despite the fact that the planes had limited capabilities and significantly inferior to its future performance characteristics of the Su-30MKI, then this machine is able to show in practice its highest efficiency. Command of the Indian Air Force has decided that the level of training of pilots of 24 Squadron can expose them to compete with South American pilots. It is a question about the exercises under the title Cope India-2004, in which U.S. fighter planes were F-15C.

The results of these exercises are discouraging for fans of American fighters. Lose 90% passing maneuver dogfighting was supposed to, because the aerodynamic an advantage over the Su-30K F-15 does not raise any hesitation. But at the same time, the Indian pilots were stronger and in aerial combat at medium range. Pilots using the N001 radar abilities, had the benefit of wagering starting at UR (missiles), medium-range mode guided to a number of different targets at once. Because there is nothing unusual in the fact that after the exercise in the United States once again activated proponents of future development applets on the fighter F-22, which, according to experts, can compete with the new Russian fighter production.

Also in 2004, the Indian fighters held a series of mock battles with F-16C / D of Singapore Air Force. During the exercises Sindex-2004 perfected the bout as single fighters and fights "5 on 5". The parties have agreed not to comment on the results of these air battles because of sensitivity about the topic. Indians motivate potential F-16, acquired by Pakistan, and Singaporeans real ability of the Su-30, which come to South-East Asia.

Later, in 2005, a sparring partner of the Su-30K fighter jets were already out of the French squad in the composition of the mixed composition of Mirage-2000C, Mirage-2000-5 and Mirage-2000N. Air combat training conducted within the framework of the exercise Garuda-II. Air France and India practiced tasks near and far dogfight also solved puzzles AWACS aircraft maintenance and providing air defense. 8 days teachings aircraft conducted 162 flights, 74 of them were produced by Indian Su-30K, the total flight time Indian pilots was 200 hours. According to French sources, when the Su-30K interceptions surpassed the Mirage-2000C and nekordinalno yielded a newcomer at the time Mirage-2000-5, the rig radar RDY. In the short-range air combat undeniable victory was celebrated by the Indian pilots.

Indisputable an advantage

International debut of Su-30MKI was during exercise Cope India-2005. As part of these exercises planes took part in the simulation of single and group of aerial combat, as departures to intercept huge groups of strike aircraft. Conventional enemy fighters for the Indian made F-16C / D U.S. Air Force. More fascinating nuance of those exercises were part of the competing "teams" 2-states. The Indian side was represented by only the Su-30MKI, while the F-16 fighter possessed of information support of the AWACS aircraft E-3. With all this it is assumed that the presence of factor AWACS provides now a victory in aerial combat. Despite this, the ratio of wins was almost equal, in the main this was a reward radar N011M "Bars" phased array (PAR).

The least known the outcome of the Indo-British exercise Indra Dhanush-2006, in what was the role of fighter-interceptor Tornado F.Mk.3 and Su-30MKI. The parties agreed among themselves not to disclose the results of aerial combat, but, according to the British airmen who were given the opportunity to self-piloting Su-30MKI Russian fighter for his fighting ability far exceeds their cars.

Increased attention functional fighter Su-30MKI has attracted during the exercise Red Flag-2008 that took place on the ground the United States. Participants in the exercise were the United States, India, South Korea and France. Flight of aircraft from India took place on July 7, and the arrival of the air base, "Mountain Home" in Idaho — July 17. The flight was carried out with the conduct of landings in Qatar, Turkey, France and Portugal. Judgments of secrecy Command Indian Air Force forbade its pilots to use onboard radar "Bars" in combat mode (it was allowed to use only certain training), use the chaff, to include electronic warfare equipment, and take advantage of the hardware bandwidth data transmission (the pilots were allowed to use only voice ). As part of the exercise Red Flag-2008 functional Su-30MKI solve puzzles to supervise the battle groups to conduct air combat with fighter F-15C and F-16, ground attack, fire suppression systems simulated enemy air defenses.

According to the results of the conventional combat missions in different variations of western aircraft, the U.S. had to admit that in the course of the exercise of the Su-30MKI fighters have proved that they are superior to major South American heavy fighter F-15 is also more vserasprostranenny world lightweight fighter F-16.

The subsequent success of the Indian Air Force and the Russian planes were international exercise Garuda-IV. In these teachings Russian Su-30MKI fighters resisted European Mirage-2000 and Rafale. In the course of these exercises was carried out not only the main programm — 430 departures, and more — another 100 sorties. In the process of doing a close and distant air battles departure to intercept enemy aircraft, and maintenance of transport aircraft Su-30MKI displayed complete an advantage over European fighters.

At present, the Su-30MKI in practice demonstrate the ability to achieve victories in aerial combat with what ever fighters belonging to generations of "4", "4 +" and "4 + +". With all of this fighter's combat abilities allow him to make up for the absence of the outer target indication and warning of the AWACS aircraft, the highest level of training NATO pilots, and their real combat experience they received in military conflicts decades.

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