The Checkmate: Russia's new light single-engine tactical aircraft

Sukhoi and Rostec unveil Russia's new fifth-generation fighter jet

The twin-fin fuselage of the light tactical aircraft is made with the use of the stealth technology. The unbound, teardrop-shaped canopy of the single-seat cockpit moves upward. The fighter bears side number 75 with registration number RF-00075 on the fin.

Sukhoi's state-of-the-art fighter aircraft is equipped with an intra-fuselage compartment for aircraft weapons. Three models of air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles were placed next to the aircraft. The aircraft is painted in a gray camouflage pattern and comes complete with the Matryoshka intelligent maintenance system.

The new aircraft was created by Rostec on the basis of the Su-57 fighter. During the presentation, officials announced a number of technical features of the new aircraft. The new fighter jet can be equipped with five air-to-air missiles. It develops the speed of Mach 1.8 and has a combat range of 3,000 kilometers. It can be equipped with a full range of aviation weapons that are used for the Su-57 fighter.

The payload mass will exceed more than seven tons. The fighter will be able to simultaneously strike up to six targets.

The new aircraft will be equipped with a highly efficient engine.

"The engine will be in the 14.5-16 t class. This engine is made on the basis of engineering developments conducted by the United Engine Corporation, and it will be even more advanced for this aircraft," Alexey Bulatov, Deputy Chief Designer of The Checkmate aircraft said during the presentation.

Yuri Slyusar, General Director of the United Aircraft Corporation (part of Rostec), said that the Checkmate would take off for its maiden flight in 2023.

"There is a specimen in front of you, but this is not just a mock-up, this is not just a demonstration model. This is the aircraft that will take off for the first flight," Bulatov said.

"Compared to the American F-35 fighter, its closest analogue, this is a different aircraft. It has greater speed, greater range, and greater payload. These are all new peculiarities. Its stealthiness is much more advanced too. I would not say that it would be correct to compare it with any other aircraft. It has a unique aerodynamic design," Bulatov said.

The Checkmate will be used to create several other aircraft models, including the unmanned and the deck-based version. According to Yuri Slyusar, the serial production of the aircraft will be launched in 2026.

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Author`s name Editorial Team
Editor Dmitry Sudakov