Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Sukhoi SU-35 - The Super Flanker

The Sukhoi Su-35 (Russian: Сухой Су-35, NATO reporting name: Flanker-E) is a single-seat, twin-engined supermaneuverability multirole fighter. It is a derivative of the Su-27 'Flanker', and was initially known as the Su-27M. More than a dozen of these were built with some used by the Russian Knights aerobatic demonstration team. The Su-35 had been offered to many countries, including India, Brazil and South Korea.

In the 1980s, Sukhoi was looking to upgrade its high-performance Su-27. The resultant Su-35 embodies aerodynamic refinements to give it more manoeuvrability, greatly enhanced avionics, longer range, and a more powerful engine. The first prototype, converted from a production Su-27, made its maiden flight in June 1988. The Su-35 was further developed into the Su-37, which has thrust-vectoring capabilities, and the Su-35BM, classed as 4++ generation fighter by its manufacturer. The new model entered into serial production as the Su-35S for the Russian Air Force in 2010.

At the moment, only 15 Su-27M/35 while only 6 Su-35S were built.

Meanwhile, Royal Malaysian Air Force did use a number of the earlier generation of Sukhoi Su-35, which is Su-30. Royal Malaysian Air Force after a close visit to see India's Su-30MKI, signed a deal to purchase 18 of Su-30MKM in May 2003. The first 2 Su-30MKMs were formally handed over in Irkutsk on 23 May 2007, later arrived in Gong Kedak airbase on 21 June. 

As part of the contract, Russia sent the first Malaysian cosmonaut to the International Space Station in October 2007. Malaysia had 12 Su-30MKMs in service with 6 on order in November 2008. Malaysia has had problems with support for the aircraft so it might purchase spare parts from China. Almost at the end of this post, there will be few images of Malaysian Su-30MKM.

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