The MiG-31 airframe is made of stainless steel and is basically eternal. Continuous upgrades to the engines and electronics in the aircraft make much more economic sense. If you go to the trouble of making a new airframe you might as well put that money into PAK DP.
I don't agree, when you are developing new materials that have similar or better heat resistance capabilities but are much lighter then it would make sense to experiment with replacing existing heavy parts with much lighter parts perhaps of the same shape and design or perhaps an improved design that improves airflow and performance while being rather lighter.
Operational experience with new materials might lead them to realise that it might work in a lab but operational conditions don't allow it to be so effective and that maybe it might retain strength at higher temperatures, but expansion issues or vibration or stress issues appear... this is a case of using new materials to improve existing platforms and to get the new materials into service so the guys supporting these aircraft can learn the new properties and how to work with them.
I don't think they should do radical things to redesign the MiG-31 to be MiG-41 like, but there will be things they can upgrade and improve using new materials and computer models to reduce RCS and drag and reduce weight.
Reducing 1 ton of structure weight means reduced fuel burn and better acceleration and flight performance because you are not carrying 1 ton of excess weight everywhere. Reduced fuel burn means you can fly further for longer, or you can just use less fuel for the same jobs.
I don't think so - simply because much of the technology that was incorporated into the Mig-31M was already implemented on the much later Mig-31BM. Everything in that design is already dated so I think whomever is going to design the PAK-DP, is going to work from a clean sheet of paper to start with.
Have to agree... I doubt they carried very much across from the MiG-29M and Su-27M aircraft designs from the 1980s to the 2010s MiG-35 and Su-35 because most technologies have moved on in that time frame. Even the shift from CRTs in the 1980s to LCD screens now is a dramatic shift in performance and weight and space.
I would say most of the more useful things of the MIG-31M programme did get made in the MiG-31BM that there wasn't enough left over to make building MiG-31Ms now worth while.
The only thing it will have in common with the Mig-31M is that it will be a long range interceptor. The rest will be 6th Gen. It's going to be a big leap from a 4th generation interceptor to the 6th - and I believe the specs (and the risks) are rather high.
I think they could do with the MiG-31BM and the MiG-41 or whatever it will be called what Sukhoi did with the Su-35 and Su-57, where instead of making the Su-35 out of things developed for the old Su-27M, that they developed brand new stuff for the Su-57, and put cheaper simpler versions in the Su-35 to test and get experience with.... they were both single seat fighters so the tasks would not be totally different but of course the Su-35 was never going to have the sort of stealth the Su-57 has, just like the MIG-31 is not going to have the speed or range etc that the MiG-41 will have.
The point is that in the case of the MiG-31 that applying new technology and systems and weapons and equipment to an aircraft already in service allows you to deploy and take advantage of new systems faster and test them in realistic conditions to see if they actually work and if there are any hidden problems or issues... so those problems and issues can be solved before the MiG-41 even starts flying.
The first MiG-41 Serial aircraft might essentially be a MiG-41M because its systems and equipment has all been tested and improvements have been started and are ready to test too.
Of course that is the ideal process that Sukhoi managed to go through... even to the point of using Su-57 production experience to make a single engined light fighter family member on the profits, which could really sell in enormous numbers... and do so on merit rather than bullying or corruption.