Although we offer rides in the MiG-29 we always look forward to what the other big aircraft manufacturer is doing. We talk about Sukhoi, and now they have made some very good progress with their T-50 jet fighter being tested and early flights already scheduled in 2014. Russia will start state flight tests of its fifth-generation T-50 fighter jet in 2014, United Aircraft Corporation’s President Mikhail Pogosyan told reporters. “In 2013 we are expected to wrap up its preliminary tests and start operational testing. In 2014, we are planning to start official state tests,” Pogosyan said on Tuesday, adding “the first stage of the state trials should be complete by 2015.” The test program involves six prototype airframes, including four flying, one static and one systems test airframe. Another flying prototype will join the tests this year, Pogosyan said. “Flight testing this year will go ahead with five aircraft,” he said. The T-50, also known as PAK-FA (future tactical fighter aircraft), first flew in January 2010 and was presented to the public at the Moscow Air Show in 2011. The T-50, which will be the core of Russia’s future fighter fleet, is a fifth-generation multirole fighter aircraft featuring elements of “stealth” technology,” super-maneuverability, super-cruise capability (supersonic flight without use of afterburner), and an advanced avionics suite including an X-band active phased-array radar. India will also buy a fighter aircraft based on the T-50, known as the FGFA (fifth-generation fighter aircraft). United Aircraft Corporation is the state holding company uniting Russia’s aircraft building industry including Sukhoi, a military and civil aircraft manufacturer.

Despite being on same side for a very long time, Mikoyan Gurevitch and Sukhoi have become competitors due to free market. The changing economic conditions have transformed the way these two units function. These last years, Sukhoi has been gaining more markets than MiG, and the net result has been announced just over the weekend: Russia’s aircraft making corporation MiG is a loss-making enterprise, parliamentary defense committee head Vladimir Komoyedov said on Thursday. “MiG Corporation has been a loss-making enterprise in recent years. The less than optimal distribution of manufacturing infrastructure causes some concern,” he said. The Defense Ministry has been reducing the share of MiG aircraft, which used to be the core of fighter aviation in the USSR, he said. A press handout distributed ahead of the committee meeting said MiG has completed modernization of the first six MiG-29 UPG fighter jets for the Indian Air Force, under a contract signed in March 2008. It also said MiG Corp. has more than 100 standing contracts with 20 countries worth more than $6 billion. MiG was formerly a Soviet design bureau, and was founded by Artem Mikoyan and Mikhail Gurevich as “Mikoyan and Gurevich”, with the bureau prefix “MiG.” Upon Mikoyan’s death in 1970, Gurevich’s name was dropped from the name of the bureau, although the bureau prefix remained “MiG”. MiG aircraft are a staple of the Soviet and Russian air forces, and the Soviet Union sold many of these planes within its sphere of influence. They have been used by the Chinese, North Korean, and North Vietnamese in aerial confrontations with American and allied forces, and form part of the air forces of many Arab nations. Recently had been reported that MiG jet fighters are being used by the Government forces of Syria against insurgents in civil neighborhoods in Aleppo. In 2006, the Russian government merged 100% of Mikoyan shares with Ilyushin, Irkut, Sukhoi, Tupolev, and Yakovlev as a new company named United Aircraft Corporation. Specifically, Mikoyan and Sukhoi were placed within the same operating unit. Therefore the final risk for the loss making unit is simply to be shut down, with engineers joining the same design bureau. With flyfighterjet.org