Sukhoi/HAL FGFA an Indian Stealth Fighter

The Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) being jointly developed by India and Russia will look substantially different for the two countries. While the Russian version will be a single-pilot fighter, the Indian variant will have a twin-seat configuration based on its operational doctrine which calls for greater radius of combat operations. The program is initiated to develop a fifth generation fighter aircraft to fill a role similar to that of Lockheed Martin’s F-22 Raptor and the F-35 Lightning II, the world’s first fifth-generation fighter jets.

“The Indian FGFA is significantly different from the Russian aircraft because a second pilot means the addition of another dimension, development of wings and control surfaces,” said Ashok Baweja, chairman of the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), which is developing the aircraft along with Russia’s Sukhoi design bureau.

Speaking to media persons at the eighth Indo-Russian Inter-Governmental Commission on Military-Technical Cooperation (IRIGC), Baweja said that both sides had moved closer towards identifying the key areas of participation in the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft Programme (FGFA) for which both countries had signed a joint agreement in 2007. India would bring into play its expertise in composites, lightweight high-strength materials that significantly bring down the weight of an aeronautical platform.

The Russian aircraft is thus called because it is a successor to virtually every fourth and 4.5 generation fighter aircraft like the MiG-29 and Su-30 MKI in the inventories of both countries. It has been dubbed the ‘Raptorski’ for its similarity to the US F-22 Raptor that entered squadron service on December 2005

The first prototype of the Sukhoi Design Bureau’s PAK-FA ‘T-50’ fighter aircraft is set to fly in Russia next year. “We are in the process of defining what part of the contract to give to the Indian production agencies,” said Alexey Fedorov, president of the United Aircraft Corporation, the umbrella organization of Russian fixed-wing aircraft manufacturers. Fedorov said that the process of identifying the participation of Indian partners in the FGFA would be completed by the year-end or in the shortest possible time.

According to Baweja, it features stealth, or a drastic reduction in the aircraft’s radar cross-section or ‘signature’, and the ability to ‘super cruise’ or jet engines that fly stealthily without engaging noisy afterburners even at supersonic speeds, embedded weapons with the capability to engage multiple ground, sea and air targets and seamless communication between the fighter, other aircraft and ground stations. Baweja said that the first prototype of the FGFA was to fly next year with the AL-37FU engine. He said he would want an engine that had 15 to 20 per cent more growth than this engine in the final aircraft configuration. The FGFA is to enter squadron service by 2015 and will replace at least three classes of aircraft in the IAF

The joint-venture borrows heavily from the success of the Brahmos project but seems fated to repeat its story. By the 1990s, Russia, the world’s only operator of supersonic surface-to-surface missiles, had already perfected the Yakhont missile but lacked the funds to pursue its development. Indian stepped in with the finance in 1998 and the missile was re-launched as the Brahmos.

Designs for the PAK-FA have already been frozen by the Sukhoi design bureau, which means that Indian aircraft engineers have already missed out on the critical knowledge curve of aircraft design. Also, the unequal status of the Indian and Russian aviation industries means India will be the junior partner contributing very little except finance. “So if we have missed out on the design phase, we have to analyze the cost-benefits of acquiring only super cruise and stealth technology for $ 10 billion,” asks Air Vice Marshal Kak.

Decks were cleared for India to jointly develop and produce the fifth generation fighter aircraft with Russia, with New Delhi making the “final choice” on the matter and Moscow saying the work on signing contracts on the deal could begin soon. Observing that Russia had started developing the warplane about three years ago, visiting Deputy Premier and Defence Minister Sergei B Ivanov said “some time back, India showed interest in joining this project. It took them (India) some time to scrutinize the various options. “Now, India has informed us that a final choice has been made. We can (now) open up contractual work for Indian accession to the project,” Ivanov told reporters at a joint press conference with his Indian counterpart A K Antony, after signing four documents. Although interaction has begun on the joint development and production of fifth generation fighter jet, the actual signing of agreements could take some more time.The two sides inked an inter-governmental agreement and a general contract for licensed production of the AL-37FU engines.The fifth generation fighter is based on the Sukhoi fighter and is expected to take its maiden flight in 2012 and inducted by 2015.

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  • Karachi Hotels

    This is great news. I know that India has been trying to take some funny planes off the ground since ages, and has never been able to do so. Again, they just lost contact with their Satellite so thats another great achievement. I would say, that Indian Tax Payers dont deserve this waste on money really, but defense budget is at mere descretion of generals and they gotta get rich by keeping people busy with such funny planes that will exist only on papers. Russians also need money 😛 so Sukhoi or SU’s will continue to come in 🙂

    • Shiv

      Don't worry dude, Present Failures are the sign of future success. So don't give lecture to indians , we know what we are doing.

    • ABC

      Even if contact with satellite was lost it discovered the presence of water on moon.

    • abhijnan

      well mr hotel from pak , u first see achievements of pakistan. you cannot even design a scooter , and that scrap JF 17 is programmed in c++ which is taught in India in 8th std class. in the world fighter programming is done on Ada not c++ so first see the great achievements by ur country before commenting on India. We Indians are world know for our technical and software expertise and what is pakistan known for. idiot mullahs who spread terrorism and a poor pakistan as a country which begs in front of whole world for money like beggars. idiot look at ur side . baap baap hota hai bhoolna nahin

  • Blue Blood

    Pakistani’s want to give us Indians a lecture because they can’t even assemble a bicycle. It’s OK , jealousy is just another human emotion.

  • Dear pakistanis remember this ” In great attempts it is worthy even to fail”

  • Ali

    actually we do make bicycles…and a lot more…anyways good progress for India

  • ronjose

    why we put pakistan in between ?? for what reason ??
    A failed state ….that too run by some brainless head’s …eating crumbs from US table …..but still they live with illussions …..fueling terrorissom worldwide…..
    So folks lets compare India with other countries…

  • Guest

    Don't get too excited lol that piece of crap is not a true stealth fighter and not even close to capabilities of the raptor

  • zoro

    pak fa is a concept with various stages yet to b completed! 2 say american fighter technology is superior to russian is naive. america has profited on the hardships/financial impotence of russia for nearly a quarter of a century, however with changing economical climate russia is poised to not only close the "financial" gap on usa, but surpass them militarily. the f22 craptor is a fine piece of engineering, however uses concepts stolen from ussr during mid 70's. this plane was a knee jerk reaction to usa realising even russia's so called obsolete su27-35 variant of aircraft still out performed usa "cutting edge technology!! f14-18/f35 all universally agreed upon to b inferior to su 35 used by india!! australian air force projection by informed pilots states jsf /f18a both vastly inferior to su 35(lol) a russian 4th ++ gen aircraft. india recently performed a joint exercise with euro union, including england with neutral souces confirming the su 35 (with cutting edge technologies disarmed to appease russian usage contract ) outperformed the euro fighter typhoon hopelessly!! now dont kid yourselves ,the su 35 is not most advanced russian technology!! usa will not sell f22 to any country as this represents their maximum techno aircraft!! hence su 35 to india even the pak fa 50 as export plane will not represent russia's maximum aircraft technology!! so to all doubters about russian aviation techno i simply say get your head out of ur grannies sphincta!! personally i believe stealth is a useful aid , however it cannot be relied upon to be the primary platform for any aircraft!! just look at kosovo where f117 or b2 was shot down by obsolete ussr missile!! missile techno still outperforms all aircraft. a representative from sony erricson recently labelled stealth techno a white elephant stating mobile phone technology which bounces signals could detect any "stealth" plane!! so the question is not whether pak fa will out perform craptor (the pak fa should b more than just competitve) more so what will b russia's fifth gen fighter which it developes for its militaries sole use? now that would b one amazing fighter!!!!!

    • TURBO6

      once again russia proves there cutting edge abilaties to almost copy or should i say crapy!!! that means shit ivan dummbasovich!!! what the u.s.a dose ten years late and halve assed as usual!!!!! by the time u 2 sorrey ass wanna bes get that pease of shit sortid out we will have mach 5 hyper manuverabal stealth drones !!!!!!! keep dreamin punks u.s. always has and always will!!!! dominate the world!!!!!!

    • kraker

      you are full of it f 22 raptor is better than the su 35 and the f 35 is way better they could shoot down an su 35 from 40 plus miles away. Don't be bias and agravated about the russians copying the us and just speculating because they copyied our atomic bomb to beery come a super power you have to gain other technology to even get a base. Personally its not impressive for russia to say we have a better fighter than the 12 year old raptor. The f 35 was'nt designed to fight every twin engine jet that exist it was designed to replace the aging ground attack jets but it can still kill anything. We are working on many future 6th gen jet fighter and bomber projects. Either way still no one wants to go to war with Russia, India,China and the USA even if they had advanced fighters.

  • xcalibr

    It is very close to the capabilitie of a stealth fightes : those rdges those clean underpart with sharp and no rounded edges(looks very similar to the f 22) what are they for?

    No plane is stealthy, its just that they produce a very small radr signature( of a sall bird). So if f22 produces the radr signature of a crow, fgfa’s would be slightly larger bird eagle.

    so go home and get some sleep GUEST

  • the man

    2017 isn’t far away when pak fa will be inducted into the indian air force, and i dont think it will take 7 years to change the prototype into the real thing. and take in mind that F-INSAS is also on its way. with land and air dominance + the size of the entire indian military, india will be head 2 head with USA and russia. pakistan won’t be much of a threat,only china might…can’t wait 4 the day

  • guru

    If the FGFA is an Indian version of the Russian PAKFA , with us only contributing a few avionics and composites for the Indian version(FGFA), then why the hell do we call this INDIAN STEALTH FIGHTER?

    • Because it will be primarily used by Indian Airforce for the first time.

  • arun

    I dont believe that minor differences in technology of these super fighters(F35,Su35,FGFA,Pakfa) etc. will really make a difference in war winning.
    The factor that will be more important will be the skills and will of the pilots who fly any of these planes. Look …even the Taliban ..who dont have any fighter and still,giving NATO a bloody nose. Think about determined Indian Soldiers with all this high tech weapons.. is there any doubt about
    them able to destroy any enemy whether it be Paki or china or even US. I think Indians are doing the right thing…make a strong Military and then, talk to world. Pakistan is a failing state…pakistan is imploding…and USA is not foolish to keep feeding this parasitic nation…Pakistan will be breaking into pieces because of its internal problems and sinking economy. Indians need to think away from this failing nation.

  • abhi

    India should develop X-Wing fighters (from Starwars) to counter Pakistan & China.

  • eagle

    some one was telling that american technology is better than russian….then ask america why they stopped the production of raptor…n stopped the f35 project due to overcost..

    • tim benton

      I find the claims that come without conformation just a bunch of BS. The US does have 168 F22 and all the tooling has been put in storage in case of a need for further production in the future. If it was such a problem they would have destroyed the tooling like they have every other aircraft. In regards to your remarks of the F35, my brother-in-law is working building them, so unless he is building paper cut our, please present facts before you start talking stupidity. And for the person that stated India would finally stand head to head with the US or China, China would be a good fight, but the USA would be short, devestating, and in the end you would be back to what you were twenty years ago, another 3rd world country.

      • Param

        i agree that india cannot be compared in par with current US but considering US concerns of takling the unemployment, economic issues, national treasury securities being hold by other foreign nationals, shelling billions of dollars in aiding Pak, intervening and spending enormous amount of dollars in middle east problems and much more…while on the other hand india's strong economic growth, military strength, 8.8% growth rate of GDP, exporting capability, venturing people movement to root out corruption & removing poverty…umm, I think it is not far away to compare with US. However, as repeatedely said by Indian govt US is always a friend to India and it is healthy to focus more on its infrastructure development with US by offering more contracts to them to boost both economies rather than comparing individual military muscle powers.

      • Neil

        And Tim, trolls like you would go back to living under bridges. Get your head out of Uncle Sam's A** and face the truth.

        It is a known fact that the US has wasted Billions of Dollars of tax payers money on a failed project. I can't believe how people like you still believe the propaganda that F22 is the "World's best fighter jet".

        If their so called 5th generation fighter is the best in the world, how come it never saw any action in Iraq and Afghanistan? Why was the project terminated at just 187 jets? Why is it so costly to maintain and still vulnerable to cracks and corrosion? Why is it vulnerable to rain? Why for every 1 hr of flight you need 30 hrs of maintenance?

        What was the outcome after 15 yrs of development?
        Waste of billions of dollars and a highly sophisticated piece of junk which never went beyond airshows.

        Then they had another brilliant bit of brainwave and lo and behold, a new under powered, under performing, white elephant was born and they christened it F-35. Good for you!!

        PS: By the way, India and US would never go to war since your country is working hard to make India an important ally in South Asia to help counter the Chinese threat. Why do you think President Obama visited India recently, to play checkers with the Indian Prime Minister?

  • defenceaviation

    US has already built 168 F-22s and there are no reports of F-35 project being stopped. Please provide links to your claims

  • riya_mh

    Hi i am an INDIAN and i am proud to be that. I just like to question to folks of all naionalities. What will you take with you when you die. I Don’t think anybody will come up with proper answer. I have been keenly investigating stealthy technofighters. While from the studies, U.S is a tech dominator but has its tech classified. The fortress of technology it posesses viz. F22, f35(under development stage)etc. Should bring it with greater responsibility. RUSSIAN Tech is also not faroff from them but will anathor some years to come in existence. China is too secretive so we all do not know what all tech fest are being organized there. Lastly, developing economies like INDIA are still finding there way to bring something outtaa it eg. Smaller projcts like LCA TEJAS. Even after tech holdings, all countries are suffering from socio economic ailments. So my opinion is to rectify them rather designing destructive technologies.

  • suk2012

    US has built 168 raptors…agreed!! bud they stopped its production because of difficulty in its maintenance..go google… you will get information over there!!

  • ind_132

    F-22-full of software. the United States has trumpeted the 5th generation fighter F-22 "Raptor" is the world's best fighter, but not allowed to participate in the Western Allied military operations in Libya, and Also relevant to explain the reasons for trying to hide something and was again exposed a series of F-22 performance deficiencies, it is not too good in this to damage the reputation of another, it is suspicious of their actual performance.that's why the US Air Force has had to ground all of F-22.

  • Kateg14

    India unlike pakistan is developing as a fast economy whereas in india normal civilians have got liberty to choose their own military leader without any internal or external intervention which is not in pak bcoz of heavy pak military and U.S pressure .before developing a good military one should develop a gud country 2 live in and if compared in military also do the pakistanis have forgotten the longewala war, kargil war, shimla agreement and liberation of bangladesh so stop this arguments dear pakistanis and do some constructive works fr ur country instead of buying weapons

  • Balasubramanya

    Country is not F22 PAKFA or JF or so called soil of the nation , water relegion etc..

    it is the people who lives in a geography , identified by the geography , and owned by geography
    if F22 is for them, what will they do with that ?

    Sell it and give them proper food water , medicine & shelter


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