Could Russia’s R-77 Missile crush the U.S. Air Force in a War?
The R-77 air-to-air missile, which will be the primary air-to-air armament of the upcoming Su-57, has had a troubled development compared to its American counterpart, the AIM-120 AMRAAM. Starting life in the 1980s as a Soviet developmental program aside the AMRAAM, its testing and development dragged on due to the collapse of the Soviet Union. It was only adopted in 1994 , two years after the AIM-120’s first operational kill during Operation Southern Watch. However recently it has seen a revival, arming some Russian fighters operating over Syria. It also has seen considerable export success. Its manufacturer, JSC “Tactical Missiles Corporation” is now working on an upgraded version that is to arm the Su-57 that includes a new AESA seeker, a technology that has not been included on the AMRAAM (although the Japanese AAM-4B has one).