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Sukhoi test flies second PAK FA prototype


The second prototype PAK FA fighter during its maiden flight on Thursday. A Suhkhoi photo

MOSCOW (BNS): The second prototype of Russia’s PAK FA fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) has successfully undergone its maiden flight, Sukhoi Company announced Thursday.

The aircraft was test flown at the Komsomolsk-on-Amur region in Far East Russia Thursday. The flight lasted for 44 minutes and “was successful, in full accordance with the flight plan,” Sukhoi said.

The mission was carried out for evaluation of the aircraft systems. The aircraft proved itself well in all phases of the planned flight programme, the aircraft manufacturer said.

Russia began flight testing the new-generation supersonic stealth fighters in 2010 when the first PAK FA prototype, dubbed T-50, took to the sky on January 29.

The aircraft has since then underwent a series of test flights.

Last July, Sukhoi completed preliminary on-land and in-flight activities for three PAK FA FGFA prototypes to make them ready for complete flight trials programme.

The company plans to complete all tests of the PAK FA airframe in 2011-2012, and expects to sign a contract in 2013 for a pilot lot of ten aircraft for testing the model’s entire weapons suite.

The new fighter is set to enter into service with the Russian Air Force in 2015. India is partnering with Russia in developing the warplanes for its air force.

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