China Criticizes New Russian Fighter Jet

  • Currently, tests of pre-production samples of the SU-57 are being completed.
  • Yang Wei criticized the SU-57.
  • The comments angered Russia.

China’s state-run publication Global Times reported that the fifth generation of strike fighters can include the American F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II, as well as the Chinese J-20, but not the Russian SU-57. Last month, Russia announced a 5th generation prototype of the SU-57 fighter jet.

The Sukhoi Su-57 is a stealth, single-seat, twin-engine multirole fifth-generation jet fighter being developed since 2002 for air superiority and attack operations. The prototypes and initial production batch are to be delivered with a highly upgraded Lyulka AL-31 variant, the AL-41F1, as an interim powerplant while an advanced clean-sheet design engine, currently designated the izdeliye 30, currently in final stages of development and expected to be available after mid-2020s.

The new model, Metropolis, is expected to be completed by 2022. The tests of the Metropolis are scheduled to start in two years. Currently, tests of pre-production samples of the SU-57 are being completed. Metropolis will have a brand new engine, including brand new avionics systems.

The new engine design is being completed by the EUC-UFA. One of the biggest advantages of the new engine is the increased thrust-to-weight ratio. It will allow you to develop supersonic speed without turning on the afterburner.

Global Times made this statement, after interviewing the Deputy Director of Science and Technology of the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, Yang Wei. He is also the designer of the Chinese J-20 jet.  Yang Wei criticized the SU-57.

He claims that the concept of super maneuverability, which is relevant for the fourth-generation aircraft, is not suitable for the next, fifth-generation fighters, because of the appearance of modern medium-range air-to-air missiles.

According to Wei, it will allow an enemy to destroy the aircraft outside the line of sight. At the same time, according to Wei, the main condition for high-quality processing of information received from various sensors is the use of artificial intelligence.

The designer is sure that pilots must have extensive knowledge and good analytical skills to work with such devices. Ironically, China is a nation that can’t create any technology itself, unless it either steals classified technology or had Russian help.

Russia immediately responded to such commentary. The story made Russian national new,s and many experts commented on such statement. The consensus is they would rather support the US than China.

It seems, China is going to lose Russia as a supporter. Currently, China can’t afford to lose Russia as a strategic partner. Last week, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo suggested that Russia should join the US against China.

One of the Russian combat pilots made a statement:

The Global Times is a daily tabloid newspaper under the auspices of the Chinese Communist Party’s People’s Daily newspaper, commenting on international issues from a nationalistic perspective.

“A very strange approach to evaluating the fifth-generation fighter, it differs from the global one. But in General, such articles are written in order to promote their policies, their aircraft, and to belittle the role of Russian fighters on the world stage. I would suggest comparing them in practice, in the conditions of air combat, not even close, if they are so afraid. According to their logic, long-range aircraft with excellent speed data fall under the fifth generation. The fighter also includes the ability to gain air supremacy when intercepting an air target and in air combat. Changeable nozzle for what is given to the aircraft? And if you take the MiG-31 with a hypersonic missile ‘Dagger’ on Board, then it turns out that it is a sixth-generation fighter, since no one else has such weapons yet? Once again, the conclusions of the experts’ of the PRC can be called nonsense.”

This month alone, China managed to annoy Russia multiple times.  In the first incident, China’s failure to recognize Crimea as Russian territory. Now, the criticism of the Russian fighter jet. Given such trajectory, the Kremlin will dump China.

Overall, it is unwise for China to grandstand on the world stage. However, it  gives the US a strategic advantage. It is very possible that Russia will join the US.

Putin does not forget or forgive. At the same time, the Kremlin will want something in return to go against China from the US. Russia will request sanctions removal in exchange of entering a US coalition.

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Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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