MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Russian Defense Ministry is planning to sign a contract for the purchase of the first batch of the fifth-generation Su-57 (PAK-FA) fighters in 2018 with the delivery of the planes in 2019, Deputy Defense Minister Yury Borisov told reporters on Wednesday.
"We are working on signing a contract for the supply of the first batch of these fighters in 2018 with the delivery of the planes to the Russian armed forces in 2019," Borisov said at a news conference on the results of the Army-2017 Forum.
Russia's Su-57 fifth-generation fighter jets, formerly known as Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation (PAK FA), or Sukhoi T-50, is a single-seat, twin-engine multi-role stealth fighter designed for air superiority and attack roles. It is equipped with an advanced avionics system and airborne active phased array radar. The jet made its maiden flight in 2010.
One of major obstacles widely reported to have held the T-50 back from production in the past was the absence of a true fifth-generation engine for the aircraft, with prototypes of the aircraft using a derivative of the AL-41F1 engine, similar to the one used in the Sukhoi Su-35S 4++ generation multirole fighter.