How will the Su-57 become the centerpiece of Russian Integrated Air Defense?


Russian Integrated Anti-Air Defense is today, almost unanimously recognized, one of the most efficient in the world. It implements, within it, and in a coordinated manner, systems with complementary performances, such as the S-400 long-range interdiction systems, the Buk and S-350 medium-range systems, and TOR and Pantsir short-range systems, so as to present at all times a homogeneity in the defense that it is difficult to fault. It also cooperates with elements of air defense, such as the Be50 early warning aircraft, Su-27 and Su-35 fighters, and Mig-31 interceptors, awacs extending the device's detection capabilities, and hunters and interceptors intervening on demand to fill in the weaknesses observed.

However, this device is now well known to NATO, which has implemented countermeasures to overcome it. One of them is based on the use of planes and stealth missiles, such as the F22, the F35 or the SCALP missile, to eliminate the key equipment of this device, such as surveillance radars. Other devices, such as the Rafale, are specialized in penetrating at very low altitude and at high speed, in order to take advantage of terrain masking to approach targets without being subjected to enemy fire. Other planes, such as the US Navy's EA-18G Growler, use high jamming capabilities to neutralize enemy radars. Finally, the arrival of long-range air-to-air missiles, such as the European Meteor, makes it possible to eliminate watch devices at a safe distance. It was therefore essential for Moscow to develop its system to respond to these threats, and to maintain a clear sky of enemy planes above its territory and its forces. It is precisely in this context that the new Russian stealth fighter Su-57, in a new modernized version, will integrate.

The S500 System during its tests in the Russian winter
The S500 anti-aircraft system during tests in winter conditions in 2020

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