Su-Xnumx. Failed improvement
Work on the modernization of the Su-27 began in the middle of the 80-ies, almost immediately after the start of their mass production. The improved car had to be different from the original by a digital electric remote control system (EDSU), a more powerful radar and a set of weapons, including controlled weapon “air-to-surface” (the base Su-27 carried only air-to-air missiles, and could only strike at the ground with unguided ammunition). The P-27 air-to-air missiles were also planned to be replaced with the promising RVV-AE.
The Su-27M pilot cockpit (this index first received an updated fighter) was supposed to be equipped with multi-function displays. The appearance of the fighter was also changing - the Su-27M received a forward horizontal tail. The range of the Su-27M was supposed to increase due to the use of an in-flight refueling system (absent from the base car) and outboard fuel tanks.
Su-27CM tests began in 1988 year. In April, the first serial model of the fighter, which received the Su-1992 index, rose into the air, but large-scale production was not deployed. In total, in the 35-1992 years, the Russian Air Force received 95 airplanes of this type, used for various tests and demonstration flights.
Subsequently, based on the Su-35, the Su-37 aircraft was developed (not to be confused with the experimental machine C.37 / Su-47!). The Su-37 differed from the original mainly by using thrust vectoring engines. The machine, also known as the 711 board, caused a stir due to its outstanding maneuverability, but remained in a single copy.
The “second coming” of the Su-35 began at the end of the 90-s, when the issue of updating the fleet of the Russian Air Force was raised again. For the new machine, it was decided to keep the index Su-35, and to distinguish it from the first "thirty-fifth", the abbreviation BM ("Big Modernization") is sometimes added to the index. Unlike the first Su-35, the new machine is almost indistinguishable in appearance with the Su-27 - the front horizontal tail is absent.
According to the concept - a deeply modernized aircraft based on the previous design - the Su-35BM is a twin of the American Super Hornet fighter, however, the excellent aerodynamic characteristics of the Su-27 glider allowed to preserve the appearance of the car, unlike the F / A-18E / F, which compared to the originals - F / A-18C / D - have been very reworked.
In addition, from the very beginning, the new aircraft was created with an “export” sight - the Su-35BM was to become an alternative to the Su-30, replacing it with the best flight characteristics and on-board equipment, which makes it possible to abandon the second crew member. It is known that a part of the funds received from the export of Sukhoi Design Bureau cars to foreign buyers was spent on designing the aircraft.
The new machine has a reinforced airframe design, but due to the lightweight on-board radio equipment, the dry weight of the aircraft is almost the same as the Su-27 - 16,5 tons. Strengthening the airframe, in turn, has increased the maximum take-off weight of the car to 38,8 tons. The increase in the take-off weight allowed to significantly increase the stock of fuel - in the internal tanks Su-35BM carries 11,5 tons against 9,4 on Su-27. In addition, the Su-35 can use outboard fuel tanks, with the use of which the fuel stock rises to 14,5 tons. Like the first Su-35, the Su-35BM is equipped with an in-flight refueling system.
The main difference of the Su-35 from its predecessors is the use of new engines - the 117С engines developed by NPO Saturn represent a deep modernization of the original AL-31F, differing from them in increased burden, large resource and economy. In addition, new engines have a controlled thrust vectoring, which provides the Su-35 with higher maneuverability compared to the progenitor.
The new Su-35 finally received the Irbis phased-array radar, which significantly increased the combat capabilities of the aircraft. The fire control system allows the Su-35 to accompany up to 30 air targets and simultaneously fire eight of them. The detection range of air targets reaches 400 kilometers. Invisibles, built using stealth technology, the new radar can detect 90 kilometers away.
The combat load of the Su-35BM remained the same as on the Su-27 - 8 tons. The number of suspension units increased from 10 to 12. The weapons control system allows the aircraft to use almost all modern controlled and uncontrolled aviation Russian-made ammunition, with the exception of heavy bombs and missiles designed for use by strategic aviation bombers.
The first flight of the Su-35BM (with AL-31FU engines) was demonstrated in the 2007 year. In the 2008, the Su-35 with the 117С engines should fly into the air, which will allow the government to start testing the machine. The state armaments program adopted at 2006 for the 2006-15 years provides for the mass production of Su-35 for the Russian Air Force.
In addition, the improvements included in the design of the Su-35, will be used to upgrade the existing Su-27 aircraft according to the standard CM2. As well as mass production of the Su-35, upgrading the Su-27 to this standard will begin after the completion of tests of the new aircraft - in 2009-10. Currently, as is known, Su-27 is being improved according to the Su-27CM project.
Su-27 fighter (different data in Su-35BM brackets)
# wingspan - 14,7 meter
# length - 21,9 meter
# height - 5,9 meter
# wing area - 62,00 m2
# weight of empty aircraft - 16,3 (16,5) tons
# normal take-off weight - 22,5 (25,5) tons
# maximum take-off weight - 30 (38,8) tons
# powerplant - 2 TRD AL-31F with nominal / afterburner 7,5 / 12,5 tons (2 TRN 117С, with afterburner 14,5 tons and thrust vector control)
# maximum speed at height - 2500 (2600) km / h
# cruising speed - about 1000 km / h
# range depending on the load and flight profile - from 800 to 1600 (up to 2000) kilometers
# practical ceiling - 18.500 meters
# maximum operating overload - 9g
# crew - 1 people
# weapons - built: 1 30-millimeter gun GSH-301. Suspended: up to 8 tons of armament on 10 external suspension units (up to 8 tons on 12 suspension units).