The Lockheed Martin / Boeing F-22 Raptor 5th-generation fighter aircraft is a supermaneuverable, or rather a HiMAT – Highly Maneuverable Aircraft Technology – fighterjet which can shoot the enemy before they even see it thanks to its cutting-edge stealth technology:
First of all, here is a video on the first T-50’s public display (Moscow – MAKS 2011, August 17, 2011):
The Lockheed Martin/BIDS F-22 Raptor, and the brand new Sukhoi T-50 PAK FA are the current leading-edge 5th generation fighter aircraft. Lots of people would like to assess the capabilities of the two fighterjets. However, no aircraft can be compared regarding its specifications only as fighter aircraft are designed within a wider system – radars; weapon systems; training; and sharing information through data links.
All we know is that the F-22, and the PAK FA are equipped with excellent AESA radars. Though still secret, the Raptor’s stealth is deemed to feature a record-breaking RCS (Radar Cross Section). The T-50, which is to be fielded within the Indian and Rusian air forces, might be equipped with anti-AWACS missiles. The Chinese Chengdu J-20 has not disclosed much information so far, but it will be interesting to this new 5th-gen fighter with the two other aircraft.
Click on the infographics below to read some elementary specifications about the Russian 5th generation fighter aircraft:
The Chinese J-20 « Black Eagle » 5th generation fighter could be superior to the F-35 Lightning II, and even on a par with the F-22 Raptor with its range, radar-evading stealth capability, as well as with its firepower. – Video:
The Indian-Russian PAK FA (or T-50) might become a blockbuster in 5th-generation-fighter category according to these arguments:
It would be far less expensive than its direct competitors (up to 3 times cheaper)
The PAK FA’s range would be superior by 70% compared to the F-22 one
Bigger in its wing surface and lighter than the F-22, it should be more maneuverable than the Raptor
It would be between 14 and 20% faster than the F-22
The PAK FA would have a 20% thrust-to-weight-ratio advance
As far as radar, system, and stealth are concerned, the Raptor must be over any other fighter aircraft considering its heavy program cost (around $65 billion) compared to the PAK FA one which should not exceed $8 billion.
However, the main problem in such comparison is that crucial assets such as stealth are not visible, and kept secret. Moreover other factors can change the balance: weaponry performance, pilots’ training, and data links among others. For instance, the Russian military are not likely to purchase more than 10 PAK FAs by 2012, and around 50 only by 2016.
22:3617/06/2010Russia’s fifth-generation fighter aircraft Sukhoi T-50 made its 16th test flight at the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TSAGI) in Zhukovsky near Moscow, thus completing the first stage of air and ground tests.>>