Military Aviation

HERE’S RUSSIA’S A-100 PREMIER, THE AWACS AIRCRAFT ABLE TO DETECT U.S. F-22 AND F-35 STEALTH FIGHTERS

State media claims that AESA radar of A-100 Premier can detect airborne targets out to 600 km, and ships out to 400 km

Russia’s A-100 Airborne Warning And Control System (AWACS) has made its maiden flight on Nov. 18, 2017.

The new aircraft uses the Il-76MD-90A as its platform and will replace the A-50 fleet eventually.

According to Jane’s the A-100 Premier, as the Ministry of Defence (MoD) of the Russian Federation named it, made its maiden flight out of the Taganrog Aviation Scientific and Technical Complex (TANTK), located near the Sea of Azov in the far west of the country. The MoD explained that all of the aircraft’s systems, including those associated with the rotating dorsal rotodome, were checked-out during the flight ahead of further trials.

The maiden flight of the aircraft came three years after Russia’s TASS news agency revealed that the first Il-76MD-90A airframe had arrived at the TANTK facility for conversion into the A-100 AWACS configuration in 2014, and six years after plans to do so were first disclosed in 2011.

Even though few details pertaining to the A-100 have been released, it has been announced that it will be built around an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar (which most probably will be scanned mechanically in azimuth and electronically in elevation), as opposed to the mechanically scanned radar of the current A-50 (NATO reporting name ‘Mainstay’).

State media said that this radar can detect airborne targets out to 600 km, and ships out to 400 km.

State media also claimed several times that thanks to this radar the aircraft will be able to detect U.S. F-22 and F-35 Stealth Fighters.

As reported by Jane’s, while the AESA radar will provide a dramatic improvement in the platform’s ability to detect and track both airborne and land-based targets, as well as making for a more reliable and easier to maintain solution, the move to the Il-76MD-90A airframe will bestow advantages from the new avionics (reduced crew workload), and improved fuel efficiency (cheaper to operate, and with increased time on station).

Photo credit: UAC

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

Recent Posts

The FB-111H/FB-111B/C: the FB-111 armed with 14 SRAMs or 18 AIM-54 Phoenix air-to-air long range missiles that never was

The FB-111 Originally known as the TFX (Tactical Fighter “X”), the F-111 was conceived to… Read More

5 hours ago

Top Aces completes first ‘Adversary Air’ training mission with upgraded A-4 Advanced Aggressor Fighter in Canada

Top Aces A-4 Advanced Aggressor Fighter Top Aces, the world's leading provider of advanced adversary… Read More

1 day ago

The Hunt For The Storozhevoy: when Soviets nearly nuked one of their own warships after it was involved in a mutiny

The mutiny of the Storozhevoy On Nov. 8, 1975, Lieutenant Commander Valeriy Sablin led his… Read More

2 days ago