Despite having a sleek design and impressive maneuverability, the SU-57 Felon is a rather underwhelming fifth-generation fighter. Here’s why:
The SU57’s Shortfall
Although a great-looking plane with decent maneuverability and speed – with an interesting noise to boot, the aircraft is still inadequate when it comes to modern air-to-air combat.
How Does it Compare?
The F-35, in comparison, claimed to have a frontal radar cross-section of 0.0001 m2 with its advanced fiber matte radar absorbent material. In comparison, the SU-57 has a radar cross-section of 0.1 to 1 m2.
This means that it had a 1,000 times worse radar cross-section than the F-35. In fact, it had a similar radar cross-section not to other stealth fighters, but to fourth gen fighters.
The Felon would be greatly outmatched in engagements with the F-35 and F-22, unable to confidently ensure dominance against other Western fourth-generation fighters.
Why Is It So Bad
When it comes to stealth, for a stealth fighter, the SU-57 is underwhelming. But why? Issues of the plane come down to several things. It falls short in areas like stealth capabilities, limited production numbers, and outdated systems.
The Hard Truth
The Su-57 is nearly a generation behind the F-35 which significantly outperforms it in every important metric in modern aerial combat, by seeing it first, hitting it first, without even showing up to the SU-57 visually.
Thus, the F-57 fails as a stealth fighter, and in the modern world, the Felon is nothing but a target.