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Russia’s Air Force not dependent on foreign-made components

September 08, 2014, 23:45 UTC+3 MOSCOW
“Clearly, our military aviation must not depend on foreign supplies, and we are pursuing this policy now,” said United Aircraft Corporation CEO Mikhail Pogosyan
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© ITAR-TASS/Stanislav Krasil'nikov

MOSCOW, September 08, /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s Air Force does not depend on foreign components, United Aircraft Corporation CEO Mikhail Pogosyan said on Monday.

“Clearly, our military aviation must not depend on foreign supplies, and we are pursuing this policy now,” he said.

In civil aviation, the share of domestically-made components is 50% “This figure is higher when aircraft are upgraded. This [growth] happens faster now,” Pogosyan said.

UAC is planning to increase production by 30% this year, he said.

The Russian Defence Ministry has worked out a detailed plan up to 2020 for re-equipping the country’s Air Force.

“In 2016 we will start receiving the first T-50 planes,” the Air Force Commander, Lieutenant General Viktor Bondarev, adding that everything was going according to plan and the flight personnel of the 929th Chkalov flight test centre retrained for the T-50 aircraft also known as the Prospective Airborne Complexes of Frontline Aviation (PAK FA).

According to Bondarev, the pilots have already started flights on one plane, and the second one is being readied.

The first PAK FA aircraft will perform its first flight in 2019.

“In 2019, the plane is to perform the first flight, and in 2023 its tests will be completed and delivery to the troops will be carried out,” Bondarev said.

PAK FA (T-50) is Russia’s multipurpose fifth-generation fighter jet, created by the Sukhoi design bureau. The plane performed its first flight in 2010. It is a missile-carrying strategic bomber of a new generation, designed by the Tupolev company. The plane will not be a deeply modernised version of Tu-160, but will become a principally new aircraft. In the future, PAK FA is to replace the Tu-95 and Tu-160 planes of long-range (strategic) aviation that are in service in the Russian Air Force.

Russia is also upgrading its strategic Tu-160 and Tu-95 aircraft to almost double their performance.

“These planes meet all modern requirements, in principle, but they are being seriously upgraded now in order to almost double their combat performance,” he said.

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