• 12:00 AM, December 6, 2008
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In July-August 2008 the Su-30MKI fighters of the Indian AF participated in the international Red Flag exercise in Nevada, USA, along with fighters from US and France’s air force. In the course of EX Indian pilots flew multi-purpose fighters Su-30МКI produced by JSC Scientific-production corporation Irkut. The EX results are widely discussed in the world aerospace media. In November 2008 the competent British Flight magazine offered their web-site visitors to pick the best fighter from the listed Su-30МКI, F-22 and F-15. Russian fighter was voted the best by 59% of visitors. American 5th-generation F-22 got 37% of votes. The USAF base fighter F-15 was favored by only 4% of respondents. Well-deserved success of the Su-30МКI is endorsed by its outstanding flight performance and combat abilities. It became the first serially produced fighter in the world to sport super-maneuverability, as well as the first Russian combat aircraft exported with the ESA radar. The Su-30MKI development is the result of cooperation between Irkut Corporation that initiated and led the project, Sukhoi Design Bureau» and other Russian and Indian enterprises. The Indian airmen played an important role in defining the aircraft configuration by ordering the fighter to surpass any known combat aircraft at that moment. The Su-30MKI development and manufacturing program has no analogues in the history of Russia’s military-technical cooperation with foreign countries. The renowned Su-30MKI family fighters account for over 15% of Russia’s armament export. Currently Irkut Corporation implements a number of contracts for the Su-30МКI delivery valued at around 5 bln.USD. The Indian Air Force ordered about 250 of these fighters with over 150 already delivered. Besides Su-30-MKIs in fly-away condition Irkut Corporation supplies technical kits for their licensed assembling to India’s major aircraft manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. The aircraft’s high combat efficiency and positive experience of Indo-Russian cooperation within the scope of this program prompted Malaysian and Algerian Air Force to order fighters based on the Su-30MKI configuration. A number of other countries consider procuring the Su-30MKIs. Irkut President Oleg Demchenko highlights, Joint work on the Su-30MKI is a brilliant example of India’s ability to invest in increasing a particular aircraft’s potential by using indigenous technologies and know-how first and foremost in the avionics domain. While implementing this project we have proceeded from the aircraft direct supplies and their license production/hi-tech transfer to the virtual cooperation.