India, Russia firm up R&D phase for FGFA
India and Russia have finalised a $10-billion contract that will herald the most crucial phase of the joint fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) project. With three single-seater Sukhoi T-50 prototypes already flying, IAF chief Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne had an opportunity to inspect the aircraft and receive briefings on progress. India will begin putting together its version of the FGFA, a twinseat multi-role stealth jet on the lines of the F-22 Raptor, starting late 2013. HAL, lead integrator on the Indian side, will send teams to Russia to qualify on the most fun- damental areas of stealth fighter building, before they begin on the Indian prospective multi-role fighter (PMF). Both countries intend to induct a mix of twin- and single-seat fighters.