If it ever goes into production, that is.
Ultimately, it is unclear if KRET’s vision for a Russian sixth-generation fighter will become a reality, but it is noteworthy that Russia’s industrial base is exploring the possibilities.
The Russian defense industry is starting to look at concepts for a sixth-generation fighter that would eventually replace the Sukhoi Su-57 PAK-FA.
Like the United States Air Force and the Navy, the Russians are looking at a wide range of concepts including manned-unmanned teaming, directed energy weapons and hypersonics. The Russians are also looking at novel radar and electro-optical sensor technologies that seem designed to counter stealth.
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One system under development for the potential new plane is a so-called radio-photonic radar.
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“The radio-photonic radar will be able to see farther than existing radars, in our estimates. And, as we irradiate an enemy in an unprecedentedly wide range of frequencies, we’ll know its position with the highest accuracy and after processing we’ll get an almost photographic image of it – radio vision,” said Vladimir Mikheyev an advisor to the first deputy CEO of the Radio-Electronic Technologies Group (KRET) in an interview with the state-owned TASS news agency.
(This first appeared in August.)
“This is important for determining the type [of an aircraft]: the plane’s computer will immediately and automatically identify a flying object, for example, an F-18 with specific types of missile armament.”
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