Sukhoi Su-27SM3 Flanker-J2: A new Standard for the Masterpiece

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Sukhoi Su-27SM3 Flanker-J2: A new Standard for the Masterpiece


Hi and welcome to my 10th suggestion which is about the Su-27SM Flanker-J1 mid-life upgrade of the Su-27S Flanker-B suggested by @EpicBlitzkrieg87 :popcorn:

This suggestion was a bit more complex, due lack of information in European internet and confusing claimings by some sources. I will discribe both versions and give all needed information about them. The Su-27SM and especially the Su-27SM3 are in my eyes the best options for an russian equal to the american F-14B / D Tomcat (SM) and F-15C Eagle (SM3), as well as a better option compared to Su-30M2.

DISCLAIMER: This suggestions contains pictures of the Su-27SM3, the Su-27SM has an seperate one HERE as both were refelcted together in the orginal suggestion. I will probebly switch the non-matching pictures in future.

First of all:

  • This is a suggestion for an Aircraft we could see in game at some point in the Future , that doesn´t mean next Patch or somewhere in the near Future
  • I don´t want to force Gaijin to rush Top-tier aviation in any way
  • Feel free to share more Data and / or correct me if something is wrong
  • If you want to visit the Su-27S Flanker-B suggestion click here
  • Discuss respectfully, any aggressive kind or verbal abuse will be reported, the Forum rules also apply here
  • FOX-3 on all aircraft in game (when added) could be balanced by limit them to a max. of 2 - 4x missiles and making them not such strong as in RL or DCS (my opinion)

Basic Background:

Since the Su-27 Flanker first entered service in the Soviet Air Force in 1985, the platform has undergone multiple upgrades to allow it to better contest air superiority against more modern adversaries. The Su-27 was initially designed to engage and outperform the American F-15 Eagle - with both fourth generation air superiority platforms forming the elite of the Warsaw Pact and NATO Air fleets. With new and more advanced air superiority fighters having been developed since them, including the 4++ generation F-15E and Su-35S, Su-30SM and the fifth generation F-22 and Su-57, Russia has focused heavily on upgrading the original Flanker design and integrating next generation technologies to allow it to better contest air superiority on the modern battlefield.


The Su-27SM3 (Serial Modernization 3) are newly built Su-27SMs, meant to be cheaper option to the Su-35S and Su-30SM for countries with low budget. Some changes have been made to it. Its main features are the new and more powerful AL-31FM1 engines. Its cockpit got 1 additional display and 2 more pylons were attached to the wings, which gives us a total of 12 pylons. The old SPO-15LM RWR has been replaced by the newer Khibiny L150 „Pastel“. New Electronic Countermeassure system; L265M10 Khibiny-M. The first batch of SM3s were handed to the Russian Air Force in 2014, tested already in 2008/10, 24 in Russian inventory. According to some media, it was planned to install the N035 Irbis-E “Snow Leopard” Radar from the Su-35S, but this didnt happened, the costs of the SM3 would explode and the installation also requires few minor changes to the airframe. However, the original Radar got a small update and named N001VP, giving us the newer R-77-1 in our arsenal as well. All 24 Su-27SM3s in of the Russian Air Force are in service in Krymsk (according to the registry and russian media), I dont know why the NATO calls them Kaliningrad Flankers, who knows, but these will most likely be upgraded another time or replaced by the upcoming Su-30SM2 and already existing Su-35S by the end of the decade.

In fact, the SM / SM3 project is currently put on hold, means no more Flanker get upgraded for now, due to possibly greater interest in the 4++ gen Su-35S and Su-30SM2, which still outclass the older Flankers in every single way.

The AL-31FM1 has a diameter of 924mm, compared to the 905mm of the base AL-31F engines, which allows 6% more air to be consumed. The thrust has been increased from 122.56kN to 132.5kN (13500 kgf) and the fuel consumption is more efficient. Besides that, its max. temp. limit has been increased by 25°C. The engine can be installed in any machine with an AL-31F without having to do any changes to the airframe. The AL-31FM1 was put into service in 2007. It is known that one regiment of Su-27SMs also received this engine. There is also an experimental modification for the AL-31FM1, which gives us 3 angle thurst-vectoring. The only two prototypes of this engine are mounted on the engine testbed “Su-27LL”. This modification can be added to any AL-31FM1 without major changes to it.


The SM3 was not been exported. However, there is the Su-27SKM, which is practical the Su-27SK but updated to higher standards. It received the N001VE (using SUV-27EP1), with that R-77, Kh-31A/P and ground-mapping. Pylons remained the same. Its prototype Su-27SKM ´gray 305´ was first shown in 2003.


Armament of Su-27SM3 (game relevant):

Guns: 1x GSh-30-1 (30 x 165mm, 150 rounds)
    1500 – 1800 rpm
    muzzle velocity of 870 m/s (1800m range)
AAM, up to ( 12 Pylons):
    8 x R-27ER
    2x R-27ET
    6x R-73 RMD-1 / M
    8 x R-77 /  77-1
Bombs / guided Bombs, up to: 
    6 x KAB 500Kr / L
    3 x KAB-1500Kr / L
    28x OFAB-250-270
    32x FAB-100-120
Air-to-Ground Missiles, up to:
    6 x Kh-29T / TE / L
    6 x Kh-31A D (upgraded Anti-Ship missile)
    6 x Kh-31P D (upgraded Anti-Radiation missile)
    2x Kh-59ME* / MK (*requires APK-9ME Datalink pod)
    4x S-25L
Unguided Rockets (in total), up to:
    80x S-8 (4 pods)
    20x S-13 (4 pods)
    4x S-25OFM (2x twin pod)


The N001V is the upgraded version of the base N001 “Merch” radar used by the early Su-27 / 30 Family. It features Ground-Mapping, thank to the new SUV-27ESh weapon-constrol-system, Kh-31A / P anti-radation / -ship missile and R-77 FOX-3 missile. LD/SD capability was sightly improved and minor fixes / improvements were made. The N001VP used on the Su-27SM3 has updated FCS and is able to use the more advanted R-77-1 missile, as well as Kh-31AD / PD variants

Its also known as N001VE(P) in the export market and used by (afaik) Su-27SKM, J-11A, Su-30M2, Su-30MK2 and Su-30MKK.


Specifications and Internal:


General characteristics

Crew: 1
Length: 21.93 m
Wingspan: 14.70 m
Height: 6.36 m
Wing area: 62.4 m2
Empty weight: 16,870 kg (?)
Loaded weight: 23,700 kg (?)
Max. takeoff weight: 33,000 kg (?)
Powerplant: 2 × AL-31FM1                                                  
    (static) Dry thrust: 80kN each
    (static) Thrust with afterburner: 132,5kN each  


Maximum speeds:
    1450km/h at sea level
    2284km/h at altitude
Operation celling: 18.500 m
Service ceiling: 17.750 m
Rate of climb: 300 - 330 m/s
Wing loading:
    min.  272kg/m2
    max. 532kg/m2
Thrust/weight (with afterburner):
    empty:          1.60
    loaded:         1.05
    max. takeoff: 0.82
Maximum g-load: +9g / -3g

    APP-50A and APP 50MA give the Su-27SM / SM3 a total 98 Flares / Chaffs, or 196 Flares or Chaffs, of caliber 50mm
    2x L265M10 Khibiny-M ECM jammer pods (mounted on wing tips, wing tip pylons for R-73 cant be used while having the ECM pods)

    OEPS-27M / OLS-30 (izdeliye 52Sh)
        120° FOV
        Azimuth: +/- 60°
        Elevation: 60° / -15°
        Big search field: 60° x 10°
        Small search field: 20° x 5°
        Close combat mode: 3° x 3° (vertical)
        Detection Range: min. 90km rear-aspect and min. 30km all-aspect
        Laser range: up to 8km
        Rangefinder: 0.3 - 10km
    L150 RWR 
    Helmet mounted sight for R-73


Thanks for your time, hope you liked it :salute:

[Will add more if there are some (more) important / declassified things]

[PM or comment if a Link or Picture isn´t working]



Su-27SM/SM3 – Su-27 Flanker Familyсу-27см/

Сухой Су-27СМ

After the burn

«Тихомировские» радары / Взлёт 2007 08-09

Engine al 31f working blade TVD. Fnpts "mmpp "salyut"

Technical description trdf al 31f. Fnpts "mmpp "salyut". R&D for aviation. Design of axial compressors


Military Watch Magazine

Su-27 family cockpits – Su-27 Flanker Family

О визуальных различиях истребителей семейства Су-27 | Пикабу

IN-DEPTH: Russia's declining Su-27/30 Flanker fleet

Су-34 с 2011 г. могут оснащаться двигателями АЛ-31ФМ1 // АвиаПорт.Новости


ФНПЦ "ММПП "Салют". НИОКТР. Разработки для авиации

Books (sorted by priority):

-Sukhoi Su-27 - Yefim Gordon - Midland Publishing 2007

-Su-27 The History of the Fighter - Andrei Fomin - Publishing 2004

-Sukhoi Su-27SM(3) / SKM: Multifunctional Strike Fighter From Amur - Hugh Karkins - Publishing 2016

-Sukhoi Su-30MKK / MK2 / M2: Russo-Kitayshiy Striker From Amur - Hugh Harkins - Publishing 2015

-Sukhoi Su-30 Super-Manoeuvrable Family: Su-30MKI / MKM / MKI (A) / SM - Hugh Harkins - Publishing 2016

-Soviel Cold War Fighters - Alexander Mladenov - Publishing 2015


PDF Document (Russian, used for Radar and OEPS / IRST)

PDF Document - The Military Balance 2021

PDF Document - Russian and Chinese Combat Air Trends

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