Designed For Su-57s, Russia’s RVV-MD2 ‘Dogfight’ Missile Makes 1st Appearance At Dubai Air Show

In what is believed to be its first overseas appearance, Russia’s RVV-MD2 short-range air-to-air missile designed for its fifth-generation Su-57 Felon stealthy aircraft has been displayed at the Dubai Air Show, besides a host of other equipment that Moscow is aggressively marketing.

The short-range RVV-MD2 missile, which first broke cover in Moscow at the Army 2023 exhibition, was put on static display by Russian state arms export agency Rosoboronexport, European Defense Review magazine reported.

In addition, the long-range RVV-BD air-to-air missile and the brand-new Kh-69 air-to-surface cruise missile were also displayed for spectators.

All of these missiles mentioned above are installed in the weapons bay of the fifth-generation Su-57 fighter aircraft for which they were designed. However, the Su-34 all-weather supersonic medium-range fighter-bomber/strike aircraft and the Su-35 and Su-30SM fighters can also be equipped with them.

In an interview with EDR On-Line, Russian state arms export agency Rosoboronexport officials stated that US analogs of the RVV-MD2 missile lag behind Russian-designed missiles by five to ten years. Although put on display in a foreign country for the first time, the missile has already been in Russian Aerospace Forces service.

In August this year, when RVV-MD2 was first unveiled, experts explained that the missile could be placed in the inner fuselage compartments of the fifth-generation Su-57 fighter. 

At the time, Viktor Murakhovsky, editor-in-chief of local Russian defense magazine Arsenal Otechestva magazine, told reporters that the RVV-MD2 was the first short-range missile to use an inertial control system, which is intended to stabilize and regulate the missile during autonomous flight.

Air-to-air guided missile RVV-MD | Catalog Rosoboronexport
RVV-MD air-to-air guided missile: Rosoboronexport

According to Murakhovsky, the new missile can strike targets from all directions, especially in the rear hemisphere. To put it another way, the RVV-MD2 is fired forward, spins in midair, and hits an enemy aircraft hiding behind the Su-57.

The RVV-MD2 missile has a combined guidance system that consists of a radio correction receiving channel, a multi-element double-channel infrared seeker with enhanced interference resistance, and inertial guidance. Regardless of outside influences, the missile can autonomously determine its coordinates. The front hemisphere homing seeker’s 180° scanning area enables tracking all hostile aircraft’s evasion movements.

The cylindrical body of the RVV-MD2 measures 0.17 meters in diameter and 2.92 meters in total length. The warhead has eight kilograms of explosives, and its launch weight is roughly 106 kilograms. Russian media has iterated that the missile could destroy targets flying at a speed of 2,500 kilometers per hour at an altitude of between 20 meters and 20,000 meters.

The RVV-MD can operate effectively from any direction, day or night, amid challenging electronic countermeasures (ECM) environments. The new missile possesses several advantages that, Russian media claims, will render highly effective and lethal in air warfare.

With the RVV-MD2 carrying forward these advanced features and enhancements, it promises to elevate the combat capabilities of the Su-57 fighter jet even further. The decision to showcase these missiles at the Dubai Air Show is significant when Russia pushes to export its Su-57 stealth fighter jets to friendly countries and potential customers.

Despite coordinated efforts over the last few years, the Su-57 has no buyers. In fact, on the first day of the airshow, representatives from the Russian government stated that they were hoping to find partners for the Su-75 Checkmate development program in addition to drawing interest in the Su-57E, the country’s export version of the fifth-generation fighter.

Russia’s Aggressive Attempts At Selling Su-57 Felons

The Su-57 is a fifth-generation multirole fighter, distinguished by its stealth technologies and advanced electronics incorporation. Designed for versatility, this combat vehicle can carry weapons within the internal compartments of its fuselage.  Russia is the third country with fifth-generation aircraft besides the United States and China.

Despite several failures encountered during the development of the Su-57, Moscow is still convinced that this fighter plane would eventually become an essential piece of defense technology, serving as a vital tool in discouraging possible enemies.

Russia’s military sector is actively working to maintain production levels to supply the Russian Aerospace Forces with fresh batches of Su-57s, notwithstanding Russia’s involvement in the conflict with Ukraine. The aircraft is said to have been deployed against Ukraine, albeit in a limited fashion. It has reportedly carried out stealthy patrols along the border and fired long-range missiles from the Russian airspace.

Russia’s Su-57 stealth fighter jet. Twitter

The Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) of Russia declared that should it receive requests from outside clients, it is prepared to investigate the possibility of selling the fifth-generation Su-57 fighter aircraft.

“The Su-57 is the latest fifth-generation fighter. Today, the main task is to fulfill the state defense order and meet the needs of the Russian customer – the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. If our foreign partners contact us, we are ready to start working on this issue,” said the FSMTC of the Russian Federation at the Dubai Air Show.

When Russia kickstarted its Army-2023 forum at the Patriot Park near the capital, Moscow, earlier this year, the country’s state exporter Rosoboronexport stated that it was betting big on the country’s fifth-generation Su-57 aircraft by proposing joint production with interested partners.

Alexander Mikheyev, the chairman of Rosoboronexport, told TASS on the sidelines of the Army-2023 symposium that Russia is in discussions with several partners about cooperation on its fifth-generation fighter jets, the SU-57E and the Su-75 Checkmate, including their joint development and manufacturing.

As it continues to market at the few airshows and exhibitions it is still allowed to participate in, Russia is also constantly adding more advanced features to the Su-57 to bolster its combat capabilities. For instance, the aircraft has now been equipped with a second-stage engine, ‘Product 30,’ among a host of other stuff as recently detailed by EurAsian Times.

As the Dubai Air Show comes to a close, Russia might hope that the display of its Su-57 Felon and the cutting-edge munitions it is designed to carry will finally attract some customers.