The Russians are Coming

The Russian Air Force expects to have a fifth-generation fighter aircraft enter its inventory early next decade to challenge the supremacy of the F-22 and F-35, RIA Novosti, the Russian News and Information Agency, reported yesterday. “We will begin test flights in 2009 and hope to receive the aircraft in 2013,” Col. Gen. Alexander Zelin, commander of the Russian Air Force, said Monday, according to the news service. The new multirole fighter, tentatively designated as the Sukhoi PAK FA or T-50, will reportedly have a stealthy airframe and two powerful engines capable of thrust vectoring.