Exchanges of blame flew after a Sukhoi Su-30MK crashed during its display on the opening day of the show - exactly 10 years after a MiG-29 crashed at Paris. As with the 1989 accident, the crew ejected unharmed.

Sukhoi was quick to exonerate the aircraft, and the crew controversially blamed the show organisers for cutting their display from 8min to 6min.

The crash occurred when the aircraft appeared to complete a downward spiralling manoeuvre too low and too slow.

The Su-30 left the manoeuvre nose high, suggesting that the pilot was trying to pull up, but there was no evidence of afterburner.

The aircraft's tail struck the ground, breaking the right engine's jetpipe while the left was engulfed in flames. The Su-30 then became airborne, but when it began to depart controlled flight the crew ejected, landing back on the runway.

The aircraft, a prototype for India's thrust-vectoring Su-30MKI, came down nose first between two runways, avoiding major disruption to operations.

Source: Flight International