It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Russia's strategic bomber plans spell trouble for PAK-DA

page: 1

log in


posted on May, 14 2017 @ 11:19 AM
The Russians have shifted gears on their plans for strategic bombers. Originally, they were going to be building and flying the PAK-DA next gen bomber within the next couple years. What the PAK-DA was going to be has changed a couple times. In press for a time, the Russian DefMin was stating it was going to be a hypersonic bird. Then it became a subsonic stealthy flying wing. That last has held out for some time now and if the PAK-DA actually comes to fruition, I suspect that is what they will fly.

However, recently, the first flight of the PAK-DA was postponed.

Then the Tu-160 White Swan was ordered back into production, in an upgraded form. The Russians have been streaming out how the M2 upgrade will use the same avionics as the PAK-DA and other technologies. This is…questionable at best. Avionics are very, VERY aircraft specific. What you fly a flying wing with would be rather different than a bolshoi swing wing.

That said, the claims from the Russian Ministry of Defense are now stating they are going to build 50 new Tu-160M2s as well as remanufacture/upgrade existing ones.

Oh, and the PAK-DA has been postponed for its first flight to 2025.

With the fact the PAK-DA isn't even being built as a flying prototype like was done with the PAK-FA(1), the continual postponement of the first flight (2017->2019->2021->2025), and the ordering of the 50 White Swans, it would seem the PAk-DA is transiting into the vaporware status for projects. Much like the touted Skat (yes, its real name), MiG-41 & LMFS projects, I suspect it will never really materialize.

The Russians almost assuredly just cannot afford the development at this time. Oil prices are too low. Sanctions are hitting too hard. China has only seen Russia as a usual yapping dog to keep Europe and the US distracted from its own ambitions. China remembers the border wars and when the Soviets asked the US to join it in a joint nuclear war against the Chinese. China wants Russia annoying but not strong.

In the future, it might be well to mark the Russian project as a Power Point Ranger case, rather than something real.

1. A wooden mockup was built and recently the Russians touted a full virtual (and supposedly) complete model as well. The PAK-FA had aerodynamic prototypes that did not use the same final materials flown initially or so it seems. The PAK-DA could have the same done to just get the avionics right…but is not.
edit on 14-5-2017 by anzha because: forgot link for digital model

posted on May, 14 2017 @ 02:49 PM
It's too expensive and not to mention 30 years too late. They are better off pouring funds into other programs.

posted on May, 14 2017 @ 08:24 PM
a reply to: muzzleflash

Actually, if reports I've read coming out of Syria are correct (and I have no idea if they are since there's no way to corroborate them), the Su-25 desperately needs replacing based on its performance.

posted on May, 15 2017 @ 06:43 AM
a reply to: anzha

What are those reports?

I haven't heard anything.

posted on May, 17 2017 @ 03:04 PM
a reply to: muzzleflash

Link's in Russian. Google translate does an ok job.

Here's something of a first order discussion of the Su-25s in Syria. It's not the only one.

1. Dumb bombs. Poor accuracy.

2. Problems with fuel tanks being too small. They had to rig replacements just to ferry the birds and that caused other problems.

3. Oxygen system problems (unclear if it lacks one or it has problems like the US has recently) forcing low flights.

4. I might be misreading it, but it also sounds like they have significant coms problems as well. That might be just operational issues rather than tech. However, with the note about how few Su-25s were fully upgraded by the start of the operation, it might be tech.

top topics

log in