Inside Iran’s Enigmatic F-313 “Qaher” Stealth Jet: New Photos and Analysis
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By The Smartencyclopedia Staff & Agencies

The mysterious Qaher F-313 stealth fighter jet has once again captured attention with the emergence of new footage and photographs showcasing a prototype undergoing taxi tests in Iran. As President Hassan Rouhani participated in an exhibition highlighting the Defense Ministry’s achievements, the upgraded version of the infamous “faux stealth fighter” took center stage.

Initial impressions of the new prototype reveal significant improvements over its predecessor, which was unveiled in 2013 to skepticism and ridicule from aerospace experts. While the original mock-up suffered from design flaws and impractical features, such as a cockpit too small for a human pilot, inadequate air intakes, and a lack of engine nozzles, the latest iteration presents a more realistic and functional design.

The cockpit of the new prototype is visibly larger and equipped with a conventional canopy, offering sufficient space for an Iranian test pilot seated on an ejection seat. Dual exhaust nozzles adorn the rear section of the aircraft, with conflicting reports suggesting they may be sourced from the United States or represent new turbofan engines developed domestically. Notably, a forward-looking infrared (FLIR) turret is mounted on the nose, accompanied by a distinctive white radome.

Despite these improvements, questions remain regarding the aircraft’s aerodynamic capabilities and overall performance. The intakes still appear undersized, reminiscent of those found on unmanned aerial vehicles, while the small wings feature a unique downward cant design whose effectiveness is uncertain. However, Iran’s track record of engineering achievements, including its continued operation of the F-14 Tomcat and advancements in drone technology, underscores its aerospace capabilities despite international sanctions.

As speculation surrounds the F-313’s potential as a light close air support aircraft, observers remain cautious in their assessments, awaiting further developments and flight testing to determine its true capabilities. Whether the Qaher F-313 will evolve into a viable combat aircraft or remain a concept remains to be seen, but its continued evolution serves as a testament to Iran’s ambitions in the aerospace industry.

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