Deliveries of new PAK DA bombers to Russian air forces will be started in 2023, RIA Novosti reports with reference to the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian air forces, Lieutenant General Viktor Bondarev.
It was reported earlier that the deliveries will be started in 2020. PAK DA will be a subsonic jet and it will be capable of performing tasks currently performed by Tu-160, Tu-95MS and Tu-22 aircraft. According to unofficial data, PAK DA may be equipped with hypersonic weapons. Results may be achieved in this area in the near term.
"It must perform its maiden flight in 2019. In 2023 the state testing will be completed and the deliveries will be started", — Bondarev said.
The head of United Aircraft Corporation, Mikhail Pogosyan, said earlier that the development of PAK DA will be started in 2014. Strategic aviation of Russia operates 32 Tu-95MS6, 31 Tu-95MS16 and 13 Tu-160 bombers. These aircraft are able to carry over 850 long-range cruise missiles.
Presumably, the new bomber will have a high combat power and it will be able to penetrate the advanced air defenses. The vehicle will be fitted with the latest EW suite and high-precision air weapons.