Dramatic footage has emerged of Russia’s Su-57 Felon fighter unleashing its onboard cannon during ground firing trials.
While the aircraft has previously been tested with a range of short-range and longer-range air-to-air missiles, and claims of trials involving more exotic weaponry also exist, it’s notable that the traditional gun remains an important part of its armory.
The unpainted Su-57 used in the tests, which could be a dedicated static test example, is seen firing its improved 30mm GSh-30-1 cannon, also known as the 9-A-4071K.
This single-barrel weapon is buried in the right forward fuselage side of the jet, ahead of the wing root, and is provided with 150 rounds of ammunition. Exactly what improvements have been made to the Su-57’s gun compared to the original GSh-30-1 is not clear, but, in its basic form, the weapon weighs 110 pounds and has a rate of fire of 1,500 rounds per minute.
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Russia, in contrast to the United States, has continued to arm most of its fighters with hard-hitting, heavier-caliber autocannons like this, in contrast to the faster-firing, multi-barrelled 20mm M61 Vulcan rotary cannon used on most, but not all, U.S. fighters since the 1960s.
The M61 also features a far higher rate of fire and is usually paired with a substantially larger magazine than what’s found on the Su-57 and other Russian fighters.