Tuesday, September 1, 2009

New 'Saturn's chief says 117C engine has supercruise capability

New 'Saturn' gas-turbine corporation chief Iliya Fyodorov says 117C engine, which is installed on the last 'Sukhoi's serial Su-35, is able to achieve supersonic speed without use of afterburner. It was published yesterday in its interview to local 'RyniskOnline' site, and reproduced by other Russian internet-sites too.

As about Al-55 engine contract with India, which is assumed licension production and technology transfer, he said it's executed well. Some tech problems are still remained however, but in no doubts they will be solved. Now they work on engine's lifetime expectance improving.

My pics of AL-55 on MAKS-2009:


  1. Igor , do you know the useful load i.e weapons that Su-35 can supercruise with ?

    A clean supercruise is practically no good.

  2. I think supercruise on 4 gen aiframe is practically nothing, since since a drag will not allow using significant weapon load for standard operation anyway. May be for run-off only :)

    The advertized supercruise for eurobirds is more a PR feature, than something needfull in the battle.

    117C - is the 'intermediate engine' for PAK FA/FGFA to, it's more important, while all weapons are in internal bay.

  3. to igorr

    what are the total life hours of al55 engine and MTBF?

  4. Igor the Eurofighter Typhoon can supercruise with 2 Drop Tank and 4 - 6 AAM missile at M 1.2

    Typhoon can supercruise with an all external AAM payload.

    So it would be interesting to see if Su-35 can supercruise clean or with any useful payload , the latter matters in real combat.

  5. Austin,

    M1.2 - isnt supercruise per most definitions. At least M1.5 on dry engine needed for supercruise per definition . The tactical difference between M 0.99 and M 1.2 on dry isnt signficant too.

    About Su-35 donno, but as I read once it's aerodinamic coefficient isnt worse than other 4+ gen fighters have.

    1. Wrong. That is USAF / LockMart PR stuff, Dryden defines supercruise as being able to fly supersonically without afterburner, USAF Flight Test Center defines it as being able to fly above Mach 1,1 without afterburner.


  6. to September 1, 2009 5:45 PM:

    If you ask about a proved MTVF it's little (some handreds of hours) because the tested engines yet worked enough. So they make them worked for proving the targeted MTBF and life.

  7. Well as long as they can sustain above Mach 1 ( EF can do a M 1.3 at max on SC ) then it is supercruise , as you are supersonic without the use of afterburner.

    Certainly a M 1.5 SC is better than M 1.2.

    But the fact remains that EF can SC with full load of AAM with M1.2 - 1.3 , can a Su-35 do it ?

  8. to Austin:

    Yes in principle, Su-35BM with 117C can fly with low supersonic on the dry engine. It has confirmed on Sukhoi's site althought exact figures yet published.:

    'During the tests Su-35 could sustain the supersonoc speed without afterburner'

    "в ходе испытаний Су-35 мог поддерживать сверхзвуковую скорость без использования форсажного режима". (in original language)

    and from the interview with Sergey Bogdan, the Su-35 test pilot (3.7.2008). My translation:

    'On the medial altitudes the engine worked without afterburner, but the plane on low supersonic speed was follow to acceletate. During the acceleration I've achieved M-1.1, but didnt achieved the maximal speed because it would be higher, then was allowed in that test.'

    на средних высотах, при работе двигателей на бесфорсажном режиме самолет, находясь на небольшом сверхзвуке, продолжал разгоняться. В процессе разгона самолет вышел на число Маха М-1,1. Однако я не достиг максимальной скорости горизонтального полета, поскольку вышел на границу разрешенной зоны сверхзвукового полета и был вынужден вернуться на "дозвук".

    But I repeat: supercruise need M 1.5 at least during certain time. It was determined initially as supercruise by Americans and Russians. If the Eurppeans started to rework the definitions as they want, for marketing aim, I'm sorry.

  9. Sorry Igor , but no one is redefining the defination of supercruise , supercruise is achieving supersonic speed without the use of afterburner.

    So if EF achieves M 1.2 - 1.3 with full payload of AAM , then it is of tactical importance , certainly if it can achieve M 1.5 or M 1.8 or above M 2 , it is better.

    But that does not make EF performance any less significant.

    What matters is if Su-35 achieves supercruise with useful load e.g. full compliment of AAM.

    It does not matter of Su-35 can do just Mach 1.2 without the use of afterburner , it achieves supercruise its of tactical importance.

  10. to austin

    supercruise depend on thrust to weight ratio and looking at the thrust to wieght ratio rafale is just behind typhoon and followed by mig

    and none of these fighters can suipercruise when loaded with external stores which increases the drag and lowers the t/w ratio significantly

  11. "Supercruise depend on T/W ratio"?

    Please! give me a break, thing isnt that simple, is it? Did u ever compare the T/W between a Concorde and a B747?