China’s latest J-20 stealth fighters made their parade debut Sunday in north China, as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) staged a show of strength to mark its 90th founding anniversary.
Three J-20 jets led an echelon formation consisting of 15 fighter aircraft which roared over the Zhurihe military training base in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region during the country’s first-ever Army Day parade.
The J-20 is China’s indigenous fourth-generation medium and long-range fighter jet. It made its maiden flight in 2011 and was first publicly displayed at the 11th Airshow China in Zhuhai, Guangdong Province, in November last year.
“The enlisting of fourth-generation jets will bring fundamental changes to the rules of the game in air battlefield,” said Wang Mingzhi, a professor with the PLA Air Force Command College.
“It will also draw the curtain on transformation in the PLA Air Force,” Wang said.
Besides J-20, J-16 fighters and Y-20 heavy transport aircraft were also among the new aircraft making parade debuts Sunday.
The J-16 is a two-seat, dual-engine multi-role fighter with beyond-visual-range air-to-air and air-to-ship strike capabilities.
The Y-20, a versatile plane with a maximum takeoff weight of about 200 tonnes, is designed to carry cargo and personnel over long distances in complicated meteorological conditions. It officially entered military service in July 2016.