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Commander: Russian air force to equip new generation fighter jets in 2013
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09:13, July 08, 2008

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The Russian Air Force is expecting to put into service the new fifth-generation fighter jet in 2013, the Air Force commander Col. Gen. Alexander Zelin said on Monday following the test flight of a new type of fighter jet.

"We will begin test flights (of the new fighter) in 2009, and hope to receive the aircraft in 2013," RIA Novosti news agency quoted Zelin as saying.

The new fighter aircraft, tentatively designated as the Sukhoi PAK FA or T-50, will be built at the Komsomolsk-on-Amur aircraft manufacturing plant in Russia's Far East, RIA said.

The two-engine T-50 fighter is expected to be more swift and stealthy to ensure air superiority and precision in destroying ground and sea targets.

Observers say that the PAK FA fighter was designed to compete with the United State's F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II, the world's first fifth-generation fighter jets.

The new fighters are to replace the MiG-29 Fulcrum and Su-27 Flanker fighters in the Russian Air Force and will be exported to other countries, RIA said.

On Monday, Russia's new state-of-the-art Su-35 Flanker fighter successfully completed its first demonstration flight near Moscow.

The Su-35, labeled as the "4++ generation using fifth-generation technology," will be sold to the Russian Air Force and foreign clients in 2011, said Mikhail Pogosyan, head of the Sukhoiaircraft maker.


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