MOSCOW, November 1. /TASS/. Russia’s cutting-edge Sukhoi Su-57 fifth-generation aircraft has the upgrade potential to become a sixth-generation fighter jet, Russian Aerospace Force ex-commander and Chairman of the Federation Council Defense and Security Committee Viktor Bondarev told TASS on Wednesday.
"This is actually a splendid plane and it can embrace both fifth-and sixth-generation features. It has huge modernization potential. Importantly, it is the best among the existing versions by its stealth characteristics. It incorporates all the best that is available in modern aviation science both in Russia and in the world," he said.
Time is needed to launch the production of the Su-57 fighter in Russia, Bondarev said.
"In the first year, the Aerospace Force won’t get 20 or 15 planes. It will get only two or three and so on," the senator said.
"We have prompted aviation enterprises to organize the production of a certain batch of cutting-edge aircraft and helicopters and now there must be no talk that we do not need them because an irreversible process will begin… Russia has no future without aviation," the Aerospace Force ex-commander said.
The Russian fifth-generation Perspective Aviation Complex of Frontline Aviation (PAK FA, T-50) fighter jet took to the skies for the first time in 2010. As was reported earlier, the experimental design work on the cutting-edge fighter jet should be completed in 2019 and its deliveries to the troops should begin at that time. As United Aircraft Corporation CEO Yuri Slyusar said, the pre-production batch will consist of 12 such planes. It was reported in August this year, that the T-50 plane had received the serial name (the index) of the Su-57.
In turn, Bondarev who held the post of the Aerospace Force commander at that time said that Russia had launched work on developing a sixth-generation fighter jet both in the manned and unmanned versions.