Russia’s New Fighter Plane Has Backward Wings

A new jet designed to train fighter pilots is turning heads with its unique look. The SR-10 jet trainer has forward-swept wings, making the plane more maneuverable in flight.

Developed by the Russian KB SAT design bureau, the SR-10 has its wings pointed forward at a 10-degree angle. According to UPI, the manufacturer claims this gives the plane better stability at slower speeds and “enhanced takeoff and landing performance.” Maybe so, but forward-swept wings also make a plane unstable. Planes with such odd wings-like the pioneering Grumman X-29-need fly-by-wire onboard computers to make constant tiny corrections to keep the aircraft stable in flight.

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The front half of the SR-10 bears an uncanny resemblance to the F/A-18E Super Hornet. The plane is entirely built from composite materials, which shaves weight and increases the thrust-to-weight ratio. It has a maximum speed of 559 miles an hour and a range of 932 miles.

The KB SAT has yet to book any orders for their unusual plane, but is currently pitching it to the Russian Air Force as an intermediate-level jet trainer. Here’s a video of an SR-10 test flight:

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