Su-57 in Turkey? Experts believe it’s possible to happen in 2024
MOSCOW, (BM) – Military experts and analysts, mostly Russians, believe Ankara could acquire Russian 4 ++ Su-57 fighters by mid-2024. BulgarianMilitary.com learned this based on an analytical comment from the Russian media Aviapro.
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According to the Russian media article author, Turkey is on the absolute right to complete its first light aircraft carrier TCG Anadolu. In its composition, the Middle East Eye reports that Ankara is likely to launch TCG Anadolu this or next year. The Turks build their aircraft carrier with a platform for vertical takeoff and landing and short takeoff and landing of fighters.
The main problem is that Turkey does not have access to American F-35 fighters. We remind you that Ankara bought the Russian S-400 air defense systems, which forced Washington to expel the Turks from the program for fifth-generation fighters. That is why analysts in the Russian media claim that if Turkey does not buy modern fighters, the new Turkish aircraft carrier will become a cargo ship.
Ankara has the option of negotiating with Beijing to acquire their fifth-generation J-20 fighters. But Russian analysts say Turkey and China are not on good terms, so they say the possibility is unlikely.
Is such a scenario possible?
Such a development is quite possible, although the chances are not great. We need to look at the current situation in Turkey from different perspectives – economically and politically.
Turkey is experiencing a severe economic crisis. The prices of basic foodstuffs are continually rising, while the Turkish lira’s value is declining and wages are not changing. Financiers from around the world say the Turks are currently in a severe recession.
Ankara has plans for its fifth-generation fighter jet. But the project is so backward that some Turkish analysts say it’s hard to believe it will be a priority for the government. This project has an unresolved problem, especially in the field of the engine needed for it. The Turks have also invested a lot of money so far, and it is really in its infancy.
Some believe Russia can help Turkey develop the engine. The Turks may wait for Izdelie 30 – the engine that will power the Russian Su-57 from 2022. But even if Izdelie 30 is ready, there is no way this engine can be compatible with the Turkish fighter, as even the Turks still do not know what the exact parameters should be.
Of course, the following options are coming – buying a fighter. The F-35 is out of the equation, Chinese J-20 – too. South Korea, India, and Russia remain. The first two countries are making progress. South Korea expects to test its fifth-generation fighter this year, but how many years will it take to prepare the Keroi version for the aircraft carrier?
Russia is the most logical choice at the moment
Although it is unlikely to happen, Russia’s most logical choice, especially if the Turkish carrier is ready to complete its tests this year and next. Indeed, Ankara needs a naval version of a fighter jet.
Moscow can prepare the Su-57, especially after announcing that sometime around 2025, Russia will offer an export version of its Su-57E fighter. If Ankara decides to turn to Moscow, it could mean delaying the exporter’s version of the Russian fighter jet and redirecting efforts to develop a naval version for the Turks.
Russia specializes in developing such aircraft. He has a history and experience in this with different versions of his fighters. Also, Russia can provide a solution for taking off from a short deck runway without a catapult, so it’s a problem less for the Turks.
The United States can reduce the damage
Washington can reduce the damage to the Turks. Of course, suppose the Joe Biden administration decides to improve communication between the two countries. In that case, Washington will not offer the F-35 but providing another option to Turkey – the F-15EX.
Boeing has recently made significant progress in taking off from a short deck without a catapult. He did it in India, which officially joined the race for new naval fighters of the Asian country.
The F-15EX is not an F-35, but Turkey would not get a better offer from Washington at this stage. In any case, however, the F-15EX is better than the MiG-29K. At the moment, F-15EX is many times better than the Su-57E, which has not even exist.
And it would not be surprising if Ankara showed humility and placed an order for the F-15EX. Even at the cost of investing more money to buy Patriot air defense systems. Because there is no way, Washington can let go of this trump card it currently holds.
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