In terms of size, nothing can beat the Flanker family (inc Su-30 MKI), whose aircraft are among the world’s largest in-service heavyweight fighter jets.
And true to its image, the Indian Air Force’s Su-30MKI is a large workhorse making its counterparts like LCA Tejas and Dassault Rafale look tiny.
India’s indigenously developed Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas seems to be its new victim, as seen in this image widely circulated on social media:
This picture is a rare high-angle image of a Su-30MKI and an LCA ‘Tejas” Mk-1, possibly taken during the AeroIndia 2021 in Bengaluru or Langkawi, Malaysia, or perhaps from inside some Indian Air Force base.
While the photo isn’t very crisp or high-resolution, it gives a stark comparison of the size of the aircraft.
The Su-30MKI is a twin-seat, twin-engine, multirole heavyweight fighter jet capable of conducting air superiority and ground attack missions, along with a highly effective air-to-ground strike capability and electronic warfare suite.
It is the Indian variant of the Russian Su-30 manufactured by Sukhoi and is built under license in India by the state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.
Having a wingspan of 14.7 meters and an area of 62 sq m, one can even play tennis over its huge wings. In contrast, the LCA Tejas has a wingspan of just 8.2 meters and an area of 38.4 sq m.
The frames of the two jets offer an interesting insight into aircraft design and the physics of flight.
The Su-30MKI is bigger than any fighter jet in Indian inventory, including the Mirage 2000, MiG-29, and the latest Dassault Rafales. Now compared to the flanker, the Mirage 2000 has a wingspan of 9.13 meters, the MiG-29 11.36 meters, and the Rafales 10.90 meters.