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Database / Air Force / fighters  / su-30 two-seat multirole fighter

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter

Total number (AF & Navy): ~ 88 
F/A-18 Hornet (~302)  Compare
Used in:
9 trg ac based in Savaslteika. Delivered 2003-2005 to ex- 54 f rgt (?). 2009: contract for 4 Su-30M2 till 2012. 2011: 4 series SU-30M2 delivered to AF.

MIG-25 Foxbat Interceptor/ reconnaissance aircraft | F-15/E Strike Eagle, AF
15 15 739 739
MIG-29/MIG-35 Fulcrum Counter-Air Fighter | F/A-18 Hornet, USN
166 166 302 302
MIG-31 Foxhound Interceptor | F-15/E Strike Eagle, AF
122 122 739 739
PAK-FA Sukhoi T-50 | F-22 Raptor, AF
1141 141
SU-27 Flanker air superiority fighter | F-15/E Strike Eagle, AF
226 226 739 739
Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter | F/A-18 Hornet, USN
88 88 302 302
SU-35 all-weather counter-air fighter | F-15/E Strike Eagle, AF
51 51 739 739
* where available

Table 2. MOD Commands and Deployments

  929 GLITs VVS Akhtubinsk AF Central Commands AF

# 15650. 929 Main Flight test center. Address: Akhtubinsk. 1994-1996 4 Su-25 ac took part in Chechen war. 10.2006 celebrated its 35th anniversary. 06.2007 inspected vy VVS CINC. 2007: 80 flying hours. 07.2008 visited by Head of Fed Council Mironov. 08.2008 took part in war in South Ossetia. Losses: 1 ac/1 pilot. 23.06.2011 lost MiG-29, crew died. 2012: test flights of Su-35; constructure of additional airfields. 04.06.2015 lost MiG-29UB, pilots ejected.

01  1001 RF-95696
Su-30SM, gray
02  1002 RF-95697
Su-30SM, gray
03  1209
04  1210
  4 GTsPAPiPVI Lipetsk AF Central Commands AF

# 62632-V. 4 flight trg center. ex 4thTsBPILS. 2000: 1350 pers; +4020 reserve base. 05.2006 visited by foreign military attaches. 2006: commander Maj Gen Anatoly Kharchevsky. 08.2006 visited by CINC USAF in Europe. 12.2006(?) delivered 6 Su-25SM. 04.2008 Su-25SM flight trials. 11.2012 +2 Su-30SM+3+3 Su-35S

  22 IAP Centralnaya Uglovaya 303 SAD EAST

22 Fighter Air Force Regiment. Address: Primorsky distr, Tsentralnaya Uglovaya. ex 4 Agp 6983rd AFB unit 62231-4, ex 6989th airbase, ex #23485. ex 22 + 530 fighter rgts. Su-27. 02.2007 took part in 50th ad corps celebration. 10.2007 received modernized 3(+2) Su-27SM. 2007 commander col Anatoly Zolotukhin.Planned staff 2009: 24 Su-27SM, 6 Su-27UB, 12 Mig-31. 04.2011 crashed Su-27SM, pilot ejected. 2011: full set of Su-27SM delivered. 09.2011 flight exercises, missile launches, 40 ac/flights. 2014: awaiting for 5 Su-35S delivery. 30.10.2015 lost MiG-31, pilots ejected.

41  87940
42  88206
43  88207
40  87204 RF-93673
  23 IAP Dzemgi 303 SAD EAST

23 Fighter Air Force Regiment. Address: Komsomolsk, Dzemgi. ex 5 Agp 6983rd AFB unit 62231-5, ex 6987th airbase, ex #23484. ex 23 fighter rgt. Su-27 incl Su-27SM (7) delivered 11.2004. 04.2008 Dzemgi airfield inspected by FE staff. 27.04.2009 crashed Su-35 during landing due to damage of wheel brakes, pilot ejected. Planned staff 2009: 24 Su-27, 6 Su-27UB. 09.2009 4 SU-27SM delivered. 14.01.2010 lost Su-27SM, pilot died. 2011: delivered 2 SU-30M2, full set of Su-27SM. 2013: rearming to SU-35.

14  1114
Su-30SM, camo
15  1115
Su-30SM, camo
16  1116
Su-30SM, camo
17  1117
Su-30SM, camo
30  88001
20  87102 RF-95273
  120 SAP Domna 303 SAD EAST

120 Joint AirForce Regiment. Address: Zabaikalsky krai, Chita distr, Domna. ex 412 AFB, ex fighter airsqdn 320th airbase, ex 120 +28 fighter rgts. Mig-29. 05.2007 damaged Mig-29UB (right engine fire). Pilots survived. ?2008 commander: col Alexander Putilov. 5.12.2008 lost Mig-29, pilot dead. 01.2009 "intensive" flights. Planned staff 2009: 36 Mig-29, 6 Mig-29UB. 2010- 6982 airbase not formed, air sqdn 320 airbase. 2010: + 266 attach sqdrn Su-25. 07.2011 50 airbombing exercises Su-25, Tsugol. 2011: delivered 12 new Su-25SM. 06.09.2012 MiG-29 crashed, pilot dead. 2013: rearming to SU-30SM.

01  1007
Su-30SM, camo
02  1008
Su-30SM, camo
03  1009
Su-30SM, camo
04  1010
Su-30SM, camo
05  1011
Su-30SM, camo
06  1012
Su-30SM, camo
07  1013
Su-30SM, camo
10  1014
Su-30SM, camo
14  1015
Su-30SM, camo
15  1016
Su-30SM, camo
16  1017
Su-30SM, camo
17  1018
Su-30SM, camo
18  1019
Su-30SM, camo
19  1020
Su-30SM, camo
20  1101
Su-30SM, camo
24  1105
Su-30SM, camo
25  1106
Su-30SM, camo
21  1107
Su-30SM, camo
23  1108
Su-30SM, camo
26  1109
Su-30SM, camo. War in Syria 2015-2016.
27  1110
Su-30SM, camo. War in Syria 2015-2016.
28  1111
Su-30SM, camo. War in Syria 2015-2016.
29  1112
Su-30SM, camo. War in Syria 2015-2016.
30  1113
Su-30SM, camo
  859 TsBPILS MA Yeisk Navy Central commands NAVY

859 Center of Combat Study of Naval Aviation. earlier at Kacha(Sevastopol). 6 Mi-14 PL, Ka-28, Ka-27PS. 2009: moving to Yeisk.

  31 IAP Millerovo 1 SAD SOUTH

31 Fighter Air Force Regiment. Address: Rostov District, Millerovo. ex AGp 6972nd AFB unit 40491-A, ex 19 + 31 fighter rgts. 2000: 570 pers., 51 Mig-29. 03.2007 lost two Mig-29 during maneuvres. Pilots ejected and survived. 01.2008 named as best rgt in Rostov AF/AD command. 2008 commander: col Vyacheslav Kudinov. 2009: cutting staff, combining with 31 f rgt? Planned staff 2009: 36 Mig-29, 6 Mig-29ub. 2010 not formed as 6969 airbase. 08.2011 flight exercises under command of Lipetsk instructors.

24  1304
03  1209
04  1210
05  1211
06  1212
07  1213
08  1214
09  1215
11  1217
01  1219
02  1220
10  1216
12  1218
26  1306
28  1308
02  1220
21  1301
22  1302
23  1303
25  1305
27  1307
  3 SAP Krimsk 1 SAD SOUTH

3 Joint Fighter Air Force Regiment. Address: 353330, Krasnodar distr, Krimsk. ex 6972nd AFB unit 40491, ex 3 fighter + 55 hel rgts. 2000: 710 pers., 30 Su-27. ex- 562 frgt (2000). 08.2007 comd.staff exercises jointly with NC. 2009: repairs of airfield, ac to Zernograd? Planned staff 2009: 36 Su-27, 6 Su-27ub, 20 Mi-24, 16 Mi-8, 4 Ka-27, 3 Mi-28. 2011: delivered 2 SU-30M2. 06.2011 exercises Bditelnoe Nebo-2011. 2012: complete reconstruction of airfield.

20  87938
70  88002
50  87939 RF-95241
60  88415
80  88416
90  88417
10  87001 RF-95621
  38 IAP Belbek 27 SAD SOUTH

# 80159. 38 Fighter Regiment. Address: Sevastopol, Belbek. Formed 2014. Delivered 3 Su-30M2. Awaiting for Su-27SM delivery from Far East.

91  88003
92  88004
93  88005
45  88208 RF-93839
89  88-22
90  88-23
  43 OMSHAP Novofedorovka Naval Aviation BLS SOUTH

43 Detached Naval Attack Air regiment. Address: Crimea, Saki, Novofedorovka. Formed 2014 from ex 7058th AFB, ex 43 separate attack rgt. 2000: 450 pers., 18 Su-24, 4 Su-24MR. 07.2011 tactical exercises BLS. 09.2011 control tactical exercises. 10.2011 tactical exercises. Planned for 12 Su-30SM delivery. 12 Su-24, Su-25. Delivered 3 Su-30SM.

35  1102
Su-30SM, gray
36  1103
Su-30SM, gray
37  1104
Su-30SM, gray
38  1204
Su-30SM, gray
39  1205
Su-30SM, gray
40  1206
Su-30SM, gray
41  1207
Su-30SM, gray
42  1208
Su-30SM, gray

Cost: US$ 20,000,000 (+8-12 mln)
W. (tons): 24,8- 30,4
Speed (km/h): at height: M2.35 (1,161 kt; 2,150 km/h; 1,336 mph)
at S/L: M1.14 (729 kt; 1,350 km/h; 839 mph)
Dimensions (m): 14,7 x 21,9 x 5,9
Ceiling, (m):17'500
Range (km): internal fuel: 1,620 n miles (3,000 km; 1,865 miles)
with one in-flight refueling: 2,805 n miles (5,200 km; 3,230 miles)
M./Engine: 2 DTRD- AL31-F2, 2 x 12'500 kgs
Man./Crew: 1
Avionics: Su-30M has more accurate navigation system, a TV command guidance system, a guidance system for anti-radiation missiles, a larger monochrome TV display system in rear cockpit for ASM guidance, and ability to carry one or two pods, typically for laser designation or ARM guidance in association with Pastel RWR and APK-9 datalink.. Western avionics, guidance pods and weapons can be fitted optionally. Sextant Avionique package for Indian aircraft includes VEH3000 or Elop HUD, Totem or Sigma 9SN/MF INS/GPS and liquid-crystal multifunction displays (six 127 ? 127 mm; 5 ? 5 in MFD 55 and one 152 ? 152 mm; 6 ? 6 in MFD 66 per aircraft).
Armament: One 30 mm GSh-301 gun, with 150 rounds; 12 external stations for more than 8,000 kg (17,635 lb) of stores, including AB-500, KAB-500KR and KAB-1500KR bombs; B-8M-1 (20 ? 80 mm) and B-13L (5 ? 130 mm) rocket packs; 250 mm S-25 rockets; up to six R-27ER (AA-10C `Alamo-C'), R-27ET (AA-10D `Alamo-D') or RVV-AE (R-77; AA-12 `Adder') medium-range AAMs; or two R-27ETs and six R-73E (AA-11 `Archer') IR homing close-range AAMs; and a variety of air-to-surface weapons such as four ARMs, six guided bombs or short-range missiles with TV homing, six laser homing short-range missiles, or two long-range missiles with TV command guidance; these include Kh-29L/T (AS-14 `Kedge'), Kh-31A/P (AS-17 `Krypton') and D-9M (probably Kh-59M; AS-18 `Kazoo') with APK-9 pod or single Raduga 3M80E supersonic anti-ship missile


The R-27 medium-range missile is a component of the MiG-29 armament. In its overall characteristics the R-27R is generally comparable to the the American AIM-7M Sparrow missile, which it is said to surpasse it in certain combat capabilities. The R-27 is designed according to a modular principle ...[+]

AA-11 Archer / R-73
The R-73 short-range, close-combat standardized missile was developed in the Vympel Machine Building Design Bureau, and became operational in 1984. The R-73 is included in the weapon complex of MiG-23MLD, MiG-29 and Su-27 fighters and their modifications and also of Mi-24, Mi-28 and Ka-50 ...[+]

The most recent Russian R-77 medium-range missiles (AA-12 "AMRAAMSKI") is similar to and in some respects equal to the American AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles. The R-77 missile has an active radar finder and a maximim range of 90-100 kilometers (50 km more than AMRAAM) and flies at four times the ...[+]

SS-N-22 Sunburn / Kh-41 (ASM-MSS) Moskit
The MOSKIT Shipborne Missile System is intended to engage surface ships. It consists of an anti-ship cruise missile, a launcher, automated control system, and ground equipment. As soon as the missile reaches the target area, the onboard missile guidance system autonomously searches, selects ...[+]

Aircraft gun armament
Today's armament systems in service with fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters of the world's leading countries widely use small-caliber automatic guns as a highly effective weapon to perform such tactical missions as: - destruction of hostile fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters in the air; ...[+]

The Bars radar weapon control system is intended for equipping the Su-35, Su-37 and Su-30MKI aircraft. Bars is a multifunction multirole radar system with electronic beam control. Its main features, enabling it to outperform other similar radar systems, are as follows: - use of a phased ...[+]

AL-31F /FN aircraft turbofan engine
The AL-31F is a high-efficient, high temperature turbofan with module configuration to be installed on SU-37, SU-30MK aircraft as well as on other modification of SU-27S. The AL-31F can operate in a wide range of reliably altitudes and flight speeds. The engine works reliably in conditions ...[+]

Multifunctional complex of electronic warfare / suppression (EW / ECM), air-based. Complex of aircraft ensures EW protection from anti-aircraft and airborne weapons. The composition of "Khibiny" complex: - DER system "Proran" or more modern; - System setting jamming "regatta" or a more modern ...[+]

An analysis of air force inventories in the majority of countries in the Asia-Pacific region indicates that local fighter forces mostly consist of obsolete U.S.-made F-5 and F-4 aircraft. Only a few air forces are armed with relatively new versions of the F-16 and F/A-18 fighters.

Purchases by India of the Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighters, which have significantly enhanced combat capabilities of the Indian Air Force, and previous sales of the Su-27 and Su-30 fighters to China and Vietnam may determine further development of air forces in the Asia-Pacific region and help maintain the balance of power.

The competition on the Asia-Pacific military aircraft market, made ever keener by the recent sales of the Su-30MKI fighters, requires from potential buyers a clear understanding of basic specifics of aircraft.

The flight performance, technical characteristics and combat capabilities of any aircraft primarily depend on their assigned role, tactical tasks and mission environment. These factors alone distinguish the Russian fighter from its foreign counterparts.

The Su-30MKI design, having retained the best features of the unsurpassed Su-27 air-superiority fighter, boasts enhanced functional capabilities. It should be noted that comparison of the Su-30MKI, a heavy-class fighter, with the F-16C Block 50, F-16C Block 60, and F-18E/F aircraft is largely theoretical, as they belong to conceptually different fighter classes and have their own, preferential areas of combat employment. For example, the F-18E/F version, owing to the F/A-18 basic design, features a more pronounced strike-mission capability, while in terms of dimensions, this aircraft is close to the Russian fighter.

The basic tactical and technical characteristics determining the capabilities of any aircraft include its flight performance and avionics and armament characteristics. Their analysis makes it possible to compare aircraft and assess the level of their technical perfection.

The Su-30MKIs structural and aerodynamic configuration incorporates the latest research and technological achievements. It is a triplane (a combination of conventional design with foreplanes) with a lifting fuselage and developed wingroot extensions. The interaction of the foreplanes and wingroot extensions creates a controlled vortex effect similar to that of the adaptive wing. The F-16 and F-18 designs were developed in the early and mid-1970s. In terms of maximum aerodynamic efficiency, the Su-30MKI, like all Su-27-family aircraft, is unparalleled in the world and outperforms the above foreign counterparts by at least 50 to 100 percent. This is why the latest modernization programs, which gave birth to the F-16C Block 60 and F-18E/F versions, involved the increase of wing span, fuselage length and control surface areas and significantly changed the structural configuration and general layout of their basic versions.

Engines with thrust-vectoring nozzles enable the Su-30MKI to perform such maneuvers as cobra, vertical reverse, roll in bell, turn in cobra, etc. In these maneuvers, an angle of attack can reach 180o. These are not purely aerobatic maneuvers: this supermaneuverability can be effectively used in combat. As for the F-16 and F-18 aircraft, their maximum angles of attack are 30o and 40o, respectively, and they cannot use armament at supercritical angles of attack.

In terms of conventional maneuverability characteristics, all these fighters are very similar. However, according to preliminary assessments, the Su-30MKIs supermaneuverability gives it a 30-percent superiority over its competitors in close air combat. Aircraft multiple capabilities put into the forefront the problem of effective weapon employment. To solve this problem, the Su-30MKI has a copilot/operator to improve the crews performance, weapon employment efficiency and provide for group missions.

The role of avionics in aircraft combat employment is ever growing. A number of the Su-30MKI fighters subsystems (navigation and communications equipment, cockpit instruments) are being developed jointly with foreign companies. Consequently, these subsystems will be technologically on a par with the best foreign counterparts. The superiority of the Su-30MKIs radar in terms of target detection range, scanning sectors and jamming immunity makes it highly effective in long-range air combat.

Modern Russian fighters are equipped with an advanced optronic system designed to search, detect, lock on, automatically track aerial and ground targets and destroy them by onboard weapons. An optical locating station and a helmet-mounted sight incorporated by the system provide for effective weapon employment against aerial targets. The high accuracy and jamming immunity of the system interfaced with the onboard radar make it possible to detect targets at a range of up to 50 km and engage them in good time, significantly enhancing the fighters overall combat capabilities. The helmet-mounted sights have only recently appeared on foreign fighters. As for optronic equipment used against ground targets, the capabilities of the F-16s LANTIRN and F-18E/Fs ATFLIR systems are close to those of the Russian-made analog, although foreign developers maintain a priority in this field.

Compared to the F-16C Block 50, a heavy weapon load carried by the Su-30MKI significantly (by 20 percent) reduces the time required to defeat ground targets by one sortie, especially when using aerial bombs. The F-18E/F fighter is planned to have a similar combat load capacity in the future.

Notably, in terms of quantity and types of weapons, the Russian fighter considerably outclasses the F-16C Block 50 and F-16C Block 60 aircraft. Only the F-18E/F is close to the Su-30MKI in this respect.

In terms of target designation angles, maneuverability, etc., the R-73E close-range air-to-air missile in service with the Su-30MKI significantly outperforms similar foreign missiles and is rightly considered the worlds best in its class. The high energy and ballistic parameters of the Su-30MKIs long-range air-to-air missiles, combined with the capability of its radar, allow it to deliver preventive strikes against aerial targets, including its potential rivals.

Fitted with 12 weapon stores, carrying a full complement of air-to-air missiles and featuring a multichannel target engagement capability, the Su-30MKI fighter can be effectively used to repulse a massive air raid.

The Su-30MKI has a twofold advantage over the F-16 aircraft in the number of simultaneously carried air-to-ground guided weapons, which are also more efficient. High-power guided weapons carried by the Su-30MKI enable it to defeat deeply buried, hardened and superhardened priority targets. The Su-30MKIs medium-range guided missile can be launched at stand-off ranges. The F-18E/F fighter is expected to be armed with similar missiles after 2005. It will be also equipped with air-to-surface missiles guided by a satellite navigation system, although export deliveries of these aircraft are unlikely in the near future.

Antiradar and antiship missiles in service with the Su-30MKI fighter excel their foreign couterparts in their mean speed.The Su-30MKIs gun features higher accuracy and better armor piercing capability against lightly armored vehicles. Owing to its unique features which favorably distinguish it from foreign counterparts, the Su-30MKI is rightly considered one of the best multirole fighters at the beginning of the 21st century.

Aircraft combat capabilities are usually assessed using complex efficiency indicators defining aircraft overall performance. According to preliminary estimates, in long-range air combat, the Su-30MKI outperforms the F-16C Block 60, F-16C Block 50 and F-18E/F aircraft by 15, 20 and 12-15 percent, respectively, owing to its radars greater detection range, higher jamming immunity and multichannel capability, as well as better maneuverability.

The Su-30MKIs supermaneuverability and better air-to-air missiles give this aircraft superiority in close air combat in which it excels the F-16C Block 50 by 10-15 percent, F-16C Block 60 by 20-30 percent (as the high wing loading significantly limits its maneuverability in close-range combat), and F-18E/F by 15-20 percent.

In terms of ground strike capabilities, the Su-30MKI outperforms the F-16C Block 50 by 50 percent and the F-16C Block 60 by 100 percent owing to its better surveillance and fire control radar system, higher survivability, better maneuverability, heavier combat load and longer flight range. The F-18E/F, following its modernization which has increased its flight range, armament suite and ammunition load and upgraded its surveillance and fire control radar system, still lags behind the Su-30MKI in strike capability by 15 to 20 percent.

Another distinguishing feature of the Su-30MKI is its high versatility. It can be used as an air defense interceptor, a strike aircraft or a flying command post. It can be used as a leader aircraft of combined fighter groups (including those of light fighters), ensuring their cooperation and concentration of efforts. In addition, the SDU-10MK digital fly-by-wire control system makes it possible to use the Su-30MKI as a combat trainer.

The above comparative analysis of the Su-30MKIs combat performance and technical characteristics demonstrate that this aircraft is capable of attaining air superiority, repulsing massive air raids, supporting combat actions of other air groups, destroying a wide range of ground and naval targets, and executing various special missions.

The Su-30MKI can operate over short ranges and also fulfill autonomous long-range missions. Unlike the F-16 and F-18 aircraft, the Su-30MKIs short-range operation will not reveal all its capabilities, yet its advantages here are still obvious. Hopefully, the above assessment will allow potential customers to evaluate the combat capabilities of the Russian fighter and its main rivals on the Asia-Pacific aircraft market.

According to all local and foreign specialists, the Su-30K fighter of the fourth generation aircraft, is one of the best combat fighters in the world. Developed at Sukhoy Design Bureau, the aircraft is intended to defeat cruise missile carrier aircraft at stand-off ranges and other air targets, as well as bomb ground targets day and night, in VFR and IFR weather conditions, under active and passive jamming conditions, operating singly and as part of the group and may be used as a trainer aircraft. Owing to integral aerodynamic layout, powerful mechanization combined with high engine thrust-to-weight ratio, the Su-30K fighter features high maneuverability, short turning radius and time, and wide speed envelope, ensuring the effective performance of close maneuvering combat and also timely initial line approach for launching an attack to intercept high-altitude/high-speed targets.
The in-flight refueling capability considerably increases the air patrol time and aircraft operational range.
The division of weapon control and aircraft piloting functions decreases the load on the crew and consequently ensures the reliable performance of the combat mission.
The aircraft on-board equipment comprises a fire-control and surveillance radar system and optronic fire control complex integrated into the weapons control system to detect targets and guide air-to-air missiles and simultaneously track up to ten air targets at a range of up to 100 km and engage two targets at a range of up to 65 km;
- flight-control and navigation system, ensuring air navigation at all stages of flight, in VFR and IFR weather conditions, at any time and season, over land and sea, in any geographical latitudes;
- ECM equipment comprises an illumination warning system, an active jamming station and a passive jamming device (a chaff/flare dispenser);
- monitoring system to check working parameters of the aircraft and outside operational situation.
The Su-30K fighter is provided with a wide range of airborne weapons, carried on ten suspension points:
- 50 to 500-kg aerial bombs;
- air-to-air missiles, type R-27R1, R-27T1, R-73E.
The aircraft is also armed with a 30mm built-in automatic rapid-firing gun GSh-301 with an ammunition load of 150 rounds.
The high flight/technical aircraft performance, its capability to engage in air fighting and destroy ground and sea targets, as well as increased maneuverability and load carrying capacity, mounting of new local and foreign equipment and armament determine the high effectiveness of the Su-30K fighter and present good sales opportunities on the international markets of aircraft materiel.

Su-30M: Basic version, as described.
Su-30MK: Irkutsk-built. As Su-30M, for export.
Su-30MK: Designation re-used for advanced two-seater combining two-seat Su-30 concept with avionics, canards and thrust vectoring of Su-37. Known internally (by KnAAPO) as Su-35UB (T10UBM) and Su-37UB. First and second true Su-30MKs, 01 (produced through the retrofit of canards to `56') and 06 (converted from a T10PU-6 in Sukhoi OKB's own workshop) first flown on 1 July 1997 and 23 April 1998, respectively. Equipped with foreplanes and AL-37FP thrust-vectoring engines; demonstrated to Indian officials at Zhukovsky, 15 June 1998 as Su-30MK-1 and Su-30MK-6, respectively. Su-30MK-1 had the new twin-wheel nosegear, which may become a feature of the production MKI, but was lost while displaying at Paris Air Show on 12 June 1999. Additionally, 01 was exhibited at Aero India, December 1998. AL-37FP power plant, as specified for India, extends length by 40 cm (15? in) and incurs weight penalty of 110 kg (243 lb), engine life remaining unchanged at 5,000 hours (1,000 hours TBO). Nozzle movement is 15? up or down. Flight control system helps pilot to set power and thrust vector for each engine, according to required manoeuvre. Indian radar choice will be between improved version of Phazotron N010 (Zhuk-27) and NIIP N011M multimode, dual-frequency radar with electronically scanned antenna. Expected to be known as Su-30MKR if produced (at Irkutsk) for Russian Air Forces.
Su-30MKI: Version for India in four configurations, sometimes referred to as Su-30MKI, MKII, MKIII and MKIV. First eight delivered March 1997 to basic Su-30PU (Su-30K or even Su-37UB) standard, with AL-31F engines; eight for 1998 delivery were expected to have French Sextant avionics including VEH 3000 HUDs, high-resolution colour LCD MFDs, a new flight data recorder, a Totem ring laser gyro dual INS with embedded GPS, Israeli EW equipment, a new electro-optic targeting system and rearward-facing radar in tailcone, but batch delayed by Israeli embargo in wake of Indian nuclear test; 12 originally to have been delivered 1999 were to add canards, as on Su-37; final 12 (originally scheduled for delivery in 2000) were to have AL-37FP engines with single-axis thrust-vectoring nozzles inclined outwards 32? from the centreline for improved yaw control, especially in single-engined case. AL-37PP claimed to offer 3-D thrust vectoring, with nozzle actuation via the fuel, and not the hydraulic, system.
Completion and delivery of balance of 32 was repeatedly delayed; decision taken that all these would be completed to final standard before delivery. (In interim, India contracted on 18 December 1998 for 10 standard Su-30Ks which had been cancelled by Indonesia; all had been delivered by October 1999.) First prototype full-specification Su-30MKI flew at Irkutsk on 26 November 2000; under renegotiated contract, IAF to receive six full-specification aircraft by 2002 and balance of 26 in batches beginning 18 to 24 months later; thereafter eight 1997-delivery aircraft will be raised to full standard. Licensed production of 140 Su-30MKIs by HAL was agreed in September 2000, followed by contract signature in Irkutsk on 28 December 2000. Sometimes referred to by KnAAPO as Su-35UB.

Alexander Gusev, Cand. Sc. (Technology)
Anatoly Shamin

Export contracts for armaments and military hardware are almost invariably subject to fierce competition among manufacturers from various countries. The Sukhoi Su-30MK contract for India is one such example. Some Western publications have recently featured biased reviews which criticized the combat capabilities of Russian tactical aircraft and highly rated those of modern European fighters.


We present here the Su-30MK fighter and its major competitor on the Asian armament market, the Mirage 2000, and analyze their combat capabilities from a purely technical point of view.

Also, we seek to identify the connection between aircraft flight performance and technical characteristics, on the one hand, and aircraft tactical capabilities, on the other.

Aircraft technical characteristics, its flight performance and tactical capabilities are primarily determined by a design concept which develops from specified aircraft roles, tasks and mission environment. One can see here the principal difference between the Su-30MK and Mirage 2000.

The Su-30MK concept envisaged the maximum retention of features of its forefather the Su-27 air-superiority fighter with a focus on the significant build-up of multirole capabilities. This aircraft belongs to the so-called heavy-class fighters. Its main feature is a capability for autonomous employment, i.e. the execution of interception or ground attack missions, including deep-penetration strike missions, without targeting information from ground-based control systems.

The Mirage 2000C is a light-class fighter intended mostly for air defense missions with the use of information delivered mainly from ground-based control systems. The latest Mirage 2000-5, a more potent version compared to the basic design, is now aggressively being marketed internationally. These French aircraft considerably yield to the Su-30MK when performing combat actions at long ranges from home airfields due to relatively low capabilities of onboard systems for autonomous missions.


Consequently, the comparative analysis of these two fighters is basically theoretical, as they conceptually belong to different classes and have their own preferential areas of tactical employment. The latter factor is specifically considered by potential buyers choosing aircraft to meet their requirements. However, there are a number of objective factors which can be used to compare these aircraft and rate their technological perfection: aircraft performances, and the characteristics of avionics and armament suites.

The Su-30MK's high performances are attributable to its structural and aerodynamic configuration. It is a triplane (a combination of normal configuration with foreplanes) with lifting fuselage and developed wingroot extensions. The interaction of the foreplanes and wingroot extensions creates a controlled vortex effect similar to that of an adaptive wing. In terms of the aerodynamic efficiency, the Su-30MK, like all other Su-27-family aircraft, has no rivals


Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #185

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #186

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #187

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #188

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #189

Su-30 Two-seat multirole fighter image #840

Su-30KN  Sukhoi

Su-20MK2 Sukhoi




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