Su-57 did not get into the top ten fighters
American magazine Aviation Week & Space Technology (AWST), specializing in military and civil aviation, as well as the aerospace industry, published a forecast of the state of the world fleet of fighter aircraft for the coming decade. It was timed to coincide with the opening of The Le Bourget aviation salon. The forecast does not apply to the quality of aircraft, their effectiveness when used in combat. It is estimated how many of these or other machines will be operated not only in the countries producing them but also in purchasing aircraft.
The method of calculation is not given. But we can assume that since the magazine is quite professional, not only production plans are taken into account. But the removal of aircraft from service due to the development of the resource. And also due to obsolescence, which does not allow the use of military equipment in the changed tactical and strategic conditions. Also, the technique should take into account the statistics of accidents and combat losses.
American predictors lowered in the ranking of Russian su-27 and Su30 fighters, having a common «genetics», one position down. Now, these aircraft occupy the second place in prevalence.
And the leader, quite understandably, the old light fighter General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon, which began to be operated exactly 40 years ago… in the Dutch air force. In the American combatant, aircraft began to come in the 1980 year. Since then, about 4900 aircraft of various modifications have been produced — from A to D. Thus, the F-16 is the most mass-produced fourth-generation fighter in the world.
The aircraft is still being manufactured. And not only in the US but also under license in a number of countries, including Turkey, Germany, Japan. And sold all over the world. At the same time, the purchase of F-16 for the US air force and Navy has long been discontinued.
Currently, about 3,300 F-16s are operated in 27 countries around the world. Including in the US — 1200.
AWST predicts: in 2029, the world will operate 2,4 thousand of these aircraft.
The second place in this ranking is also predictable. If, of course, to focus solely on the victorious advertising relation of the company «Lockheed-Martin». It’s an F-35 Lightning II fighter-bomber. The number of these aircraft were counted directly with pharmaceutical precision. After 10 years, according to forecasters from AWST, they will be equal to 2181.
It would seem strange. Because the grandiose project, which as co-manufacturers of this aircraft, involves several countries such as Italy, Japan, Turkey, Israel, the UK, involves the production of 3323 aircraft of three modifications F-35A (for ground airfields), F-35B (with a shortened takeoff and vertical landing for the Marine Corps) and F-35C (for aircraft carriers). However, production will continue after 2029. So all the number of aircraft by the end of the next decade will not have time to build.
There is another point, quite unexpected. In 2026, we will begin to write off the first series of aircraft F-35B, when their flight reaches 2100 hours. Although the documentation on them and appear 8000 hours resource. This will happen because of design errors that have been identified and eliminated on subsequent machines. So that will here is such «natural wane.»
It is clear that in 2029 no one will remember the prophecies of AWST. And this is for the magazine, which is now three years old, it will be very good. Because the forecast regarding the American fighter of the fifth generation is fraught with huge risks. They are connected with two circumstances. First, at least to date, has already built four hundred F-35 aircraft yet to be exploited. The developers claim that the pilot of the aircraft, in fact, do not have to do anything for it all solves a powerful artificial intelligence, but the F-35 is still only mastering, trying on it. And artificial intelligence is not yet properly «reset the brain.»
The recent disaster, which occurred with the Japanese aircraft on the high seas, perfectly showed that not only the pilot but also the developers themselves do not always understand «what is on the mind» of the fighter program managers. The cause of this accident has not been established for certain. That is, the aircraft with normally operating systems suddenly decided to «suicide». At the same time and the pilot was killed.
Hence the «second». Despite the unprecedented advertising campaign, the credibility of the F-35 is rapidly falling. The project begins to leave its participants who have to buy planes. More accurately, try to abandon contracts. However, the US is using all its political and economic power to prevent mass flight.
Tried to abandon the purchase of «Leitinho-2» Australia and Denmark. However, they did not succeed — Washington returned them to the «f-35 fan club».
But where is the guarantee that in the foreseeable future will be able to contain the flow of «refuseniks»? And how much then will it decrease the figure 2181?
By the way, the number of projected f-16 fighters directly depends on the F-35A. Because the US air force F-35A should replace the long-outdated, despite the continuous modernization, F-16. If the program of production of «Lightings-2» long before its end will begin to curtail, the F-16 in the world in 2029 will be much more than 2.4 thousand.
But there is another caveat, because of which the Russian aircraft of the su-27 in the 2029 year may not be in third place in THE host rating, and the fourth.
Deck modification F-35S is designed to replace the aircraft carriers of fighter-attack aircraft F/A-18. And they intend to abandon the old modification of the «hornet», operated since the mid-80s, and from the newer — «Super Hornet».Now the ratio of the population is as follows. F/A-18 — 1450 aircraft. The su-27 family, which includes not only, according to the American magazine, su-27 and su-30, but also su-34 and su-35 — 1550 aircraft. We are now in the second position, and American carrier planes are in the third. With minimal disruption.
If there is a curtailment of production of F-35S, the United States will begin to increase the production of «Super Hornets», which are quite modern and quite effective. So by the end of the next decade, they may well be compared quantitatively with the su-27/30/34/35.
However, the magazine AWST, able to pierce the eye of the decade, takes in 2029, our fighter line third place with the figure in 1905 machines.
The following positions of the rating also conceal a lot of «wonderful discoveries». In the top ten is the best aircraft of the Vietnam war MiG-21, belonging to the third generation. There is also the su-25, a beautiful machine, but survived its stellar time. Most of these aircraft is in the Russian air force — about two hundred. But they are actively replaced by front-line bombers su-34. The authors of the rating, apparently, do not know.
Let’s hope that they are aware of the fate of the MiG-35, which was in the top ten.
And here is for su-57 seats in it not inherited.