Mark Your Calendars

The Indian air force expects to receive its first prototype of the PAK FA, the fifth generation fighter that India intends to jointly develop with Russia, for trials in 2014 and then induct the stealthy fighter into service by 2022, reported The Economic Times, an Indian newspaper. Russia is already flying several Sukhoi-built PAK FA prototypes. IAF chief Norman Browne visited Russia earlier this month to observe PAK FA progress at Sukhoi’s plant near Moscow, according to the Aug. 19 report. The Indians are reportedly close to signing a contract with the Russians for the aircraft’s research and development phase. Overall, India is projected to spend more than $30 billion to acquire 214 of the fighters by 2030, states the report. The Indians refer to this airplane as the fifth generation fighter aircraft, or FGFA. The Air Force’s F-22 Raptor is the first and only fifth generation aircraft in service worldwide. However, in addition to the PAK-FA, China appears to be developing two advanced fighters: the stealthy J-20 and F-60.