A prototype engine has been developed for Russia’s new strategic bomber, Prospective Air Complex for Long Range Aviation (Russian acronym- PAK DA), which is expected to be rolled-out in 2021-22.
The PAK-DA is the next generation strategic bomber boasting a flying wing design, stealth features and will carry hypersonic missiles and nuclear weapons in its belly. It will replace current generation long range bombers such as the Tu-160, Tu-95 and Tu-22.
In February, the Russian MoD greenlit a contract to commence production of PAK-DA aircraft with initial deliveries targeted for 2027.
On Wednesday, Alexei Sobolev, Deputy General Director - Managing Director of UEC-Kuznetsov told reporters that the engine will be sent for its tests soon after its assembly.
It was Alexei Krivorochko, Russian Deputy Minister of Defense, who first revealed that the bomber’s engine prototype will be sent for its initial tests by the end of 2020.
The aircraft will have a 12km operational range and is of subsonic speed. It will be able to remain in the air for up to 30 hours while carrying 30 tonnes of nuclear weaponry.