(From the National Interest)
By Dave Majumdar
China’s People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) will start receiving its first Sukhoi Su-35 Flanker-E fighters from Russia later this year.
“Supplies of fighter jets will start in the 4th quarter of this year. For now, everything goes according to plan,” a Russian military-diplomatic source told the TASS late last week.
Russia signed a contract to deliver twenty-four Su-35 fighters worth more than $2 billion to China late last year.The contract will be filled within three years according to TASS’s source. Production of a modernized S-108 communications system—which was part of Beijing’s requirements—has already started.
While the addition of the Su-35 will boost Chinese capabilities while the PLAAF waits for its fifth-generation J-20 to enter service. The Su-35S is the most potent version of the Flanker built to date. The powerful twin-engine fighter is high flying, fast and carries an enormous payload. Combined with its advanced suite of avionics, that makes the Su-35 an extremely dangerous foe to any Western fighter with the sole exception of the stealthy Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor. Read more