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    An Obituary for Russia’s Potential Air Superiority Stalwart: The Su-37 Terminator

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    File:Soukhoï Su-37.jpg” by Vxv91 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

    The Sukhoi Su-37 Terminator marked a major advance in Russian air technology.

    With thrust-vectoring nozzles, improved radar, and upgraded avionics, it displayed impressive maneuverability and combat skills. While excelling as an agile dogfighter, it demanded adept pilots and grappled with handling issues.

    Sukhoi Su-37 fighter” by Antarant is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

    This aircraft not only wowed audiences with its agility at airshows but also promised a new era of air superiority.

    In 2002, the Su-37 prototype crashed due to software malfunction, while its horizontal stabilizer broke off in flight, likely due to exceeding g-limits multiple times throughout its life.

    Su-37 no Recife – Autógrafo Frolov 24-03-1998” by TC 2 is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

    The Su-37 was initially equipped with two experimental Lyulka-Saturn AL-31FP engines – a derivative of the AL-31F turbofan of the Su-27 – until the newer AL-37FU engines were available.

    Sukhoi Su-37 fighter” by Antarant is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

    In 2001, the prototype was fitted with AL-37FU engines, updated avionics, and a fly-by-wire control system.

    Sukhoi Su-37 fighter” by Antarant is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

    Pilots interfaced with the craft’s advanced systems using four full-color LCD multi-function displays, a significant improvement over its predecessor’s capabilities.

    Russian SU-27 Flanker” by Defence Images is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

    The radar system alone, the N011M Bars, was a marvel that could lock onto and track twenty targets concurrently, surpassing the Su-27’s older radar.

    Su-37” by li.pan39 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

    The Su-37 also boasted an impressive armament potential, equipped with 12 hardpoints and capable of carrying up to 8,000 kg of missiles, including a mix of short-range R-73E and R-77 missiles for air combat, and various missiles suitable for ground attack roles.

    Russian Air Force, RF-95812, Sukhoi Su-37” by Anna Zvereva is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

    Its flying performances were nothing short of spectacular, demonstrated at prestigious events like the Farnborough Airshow in September 1996, where it performed the “Super Cobra” maneuver—a testament to the aircraft’s exceptional agility and the skill of its pilots.

    Sukhoi Su-27SM-3 Flanker ’57 red’” by Support your local Air Museum! (HawkeyeUK) is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

    The crash brought an end to the Su-37 program. Yet, Sukhoi later introduced several modernizations of the Su-27, notably the Su-30MKI and Su-35BM and each made use of the technology developed for the Su-37, including the thrust vectoring engines, improved radar systems, and avionics.

    related images you might be interested.

    File:MAKS-2007-Su-27.jpg” by User:Simm is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5
    Mig-29 and SU-37” by Dmitriy Fomin is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
    Sukhoi Su-35BM Flanker-E ‘901 black’” by Support your local Air Museum! (HawkeyeUK) is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
    Sukhoi Su-30SM ‘RF-81722 – 37 blue’ (36746398053)” by Alan Wilson from Stilton, Peterborough, Cambs, UK is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

    Relevant articles:
    Sukhoi Su-37: Unraveling the Legacy of Russia’s Flying Terminator Fighter, The National Interest
    Su-37 Terminator, fandom.com
    Airforce Technology, Airforce Technology
    Sukhoi Su-37 Terminator, Fandom

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