Komsomolsk-on-Amur puts stealthy Su-57 Felon ‘in the fridge’

MOSCOW ($1=60.36 Russian Rubles) — Russia begins to gradually increase the serial production of the Su-57 Felon. According to the Kremlin’s plans, the Russian Air and Space Force [VKS] should be equipped with 76 Su-57 units by the end of 2028. That makes a total of three squadrons.

'Non-classical' Su-57s are using Soviet-made Kh-59 ASM in Ukraine
Photo credit: TASS

It is for this reason that the leaders of Red Square decided to invest funds in the improved production of the Russian plant producing the planes – Komsomolsk-on-Amur. All combat aircraft of the Sukhoi family is made here with a small exception – the Su-34 bomber, which is built in Siberia.

Russia has produced only seven Su-57 fighters to date. A quite modest production, otherwise the “pearl” of Russian combat aviation. Five of these seven are already operationally ready, and two are awaiting their future assignment. However, Russia continues to hope that a foreign country will show interest in the fighter. Perhaps it would have been easier for this to happen if Russia had not invaded Ukraine and unleashed the wrath of Western nations by imposing sanctions. Sanctions that currently scare smaller [or poor] customers away from ordering Russian weapons.

Perhaps that’s why Russia sent the Su-57 Felon to the Zhuhai air show in China. Looking for new customers. But even if none are found, the remaining 69 fighters must be produced quickly.

Russia showed almost assembled second production Su-57 fighter [photos]
Photo credit: Naked Science

That is why Komsomolsk-on-Amur has been in the process of large-scale modernization for some time. New manufacturing techniques and automated processes are designed to speed up production. Construction also began in August on a new avionics test facility, a tank farm, and a new engine test stand, all of which are scheduled to enter service in mid-2023.

The latest innovation at the Russian plant is a cold room, which is a bit worrying as it turns out there hasn’t been one until now. The cold chamber was discovered about two months ago – at the end of August. Its main purpose is to help the Su-57 get its radio-absorbing coating, or so-called, stealth cover.

According to Rostec, the new “cooler” provides the necessary parameters in terms of temperature, humidity, and airflow speed to be able to work with special coatings throughout the year without interruption.

The new “refrigerator” or cooling center is actually a brand new huge building “armed” with high-performance pumps, a cooling tower, and refrigerant tanks. The “refrigerator” has a developed labyrinthine pipe system, and Russian experts compare it to a huge air conditioning system. This is a very important addition to the “fridge” because, despite the cold months in winter, in this region of Russia summer and spring enjoy sunny days. Which means cooling is a must.

Truth or rumors - Algeria 'buys' 14 Su-57 fighter jets, Russia media claimed
Photo credit: Wikipedia

I.e. after the entire air conditioning system cools the air, the system also cools the air in the stealth coating chambers. Thus, the new “refrigerator” will guarantee dry air and quick sewing of the coatings, which will make the Su-57 production process faster. According to the director of the plant, Mr. Alexander Pekarsh, thanks to the new “refrigerator”, Russia will fulfill the production plan in 2023. BulgarianMilitary.com recalls: according to Russian plans, by the end of 2024, Russia should have acquired a minimum of 22 Su-57 Felon fighters.


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