The Russian Air Force will receive its first Sukhoi T-50 PAK-FA fifth-generation stealth fighter in the third quarter of 2013, according to RIA Novosti. The report, which cites Russian air force commander Lt Gen Viktor Bondarev, states that government flight tests will start in the fourth quarter of the year. Earlier in April, Russian president Vladimir Putin had said that new jet would enter into service in 2016.
Meanwhile back here in America, the Lockheed Martin F-35B completed its 500th vertical landing on 3 August. The B-model is expected to start its second set of sea trials next week on the USS Wasp. Successfully completing of those sea trials is key to declaring F-35B operational with the US Marine Corps in 2015.
In other news, Japan launched its biggest warship since World War II earlier today according to the Associated Press. Though officially classified as a destroyer, the 19,500-ton vessel is in fact a small aircraft carrier some 820ft in length. It will carry 14 helicopters, and while it does not have a ski-jump or catapults, that would not prevent Japan from operating F-35Bs from its deck. US amphibious assault ships like the Wasp do just fine without those features.
It is debatable as to whether or not the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, which is the post-war successor to the Imperial Japanese Navy, is technically permitted to own an aircraft carrier under Article 9 of the current Japanese constitution. Under that article, Japan renounces war as a means to settle international disputes.