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Jf-17 thunder block-2 is under construction in real ????

This is a discussion on Jf-17 thunder block-2 is under construction in real ???? within the Air Force & Aviation forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; I think China's engine problems with Russia have alot to do with it. The PLAAF officially cleared JF-17's design as ...


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Old October 27th, 2011   #31
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I think China's engine problems with Russia have alot to do with it. The PLAAF officially cleared JF-17's design as meeting their requirements a little while back, and they have continued test-flying test-variants with the WS-13A engine they're developing for the aircraft. The continuing test-flights, despite Pakistan already inducting the aircraft, would logically suggest Chinese interest. But I doubt if they'll go for JF-17s with Russian RD-93 engines, given the headaches Russia has been giving them over the engines.

Russia knows China's own engine development projects are coming along nicely but they've still got China in their control for a little more time, China was really hoping they wouldn't have to order more AL-31s for their J-10s but problems producing WS-10s in sufficient numbers neccessitated another Russian deal. And the comments from all sides have been pretty public, Russians accusing Chinese of stealing and pushing prices up, etc.

China has large numbers of J-6, J-7s to replace, if it wants to maintain the size of it's airforce(which they clearly do, they're trying to compete with the USAF which's combat aircraft fleet numbers in the thousands not the hundreds), the JF-17(which, if you keep up with Chinese sources, is rumoured likely to have the J-9 designation in PLAAF service) would very likely be inducted. But not with Russian engines, senior officials from Russia's aeronautics industry already went public about how Russia should block RD-93(JF-17's engine) sales to China in order to prevent competition from the JF-17 in many markets later on. China obviously can't have it's fleet be at the mercy of Russia, especially the J-9/FC-1 fleet which would likely be a large fleet, given the J-6, J-7 fleet it would replace is very large.

China has already stopped developing the J-7, the JL-9 is likely to be the most advanced MiG-21 modification we'll ever see. So unless China goes all-out and spends alot more money putting J-10s on their bases bordering Mongolia, JF-17s would very likely be a nice inexpensive backup option for places China doesn't need J-10, -11s, or J-20s for.
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Old October 27th, 2011   #32
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I think China's engine problems with Russia have alot to do with it. The PLAAF officially cleared JF-17's design as meeting their requirements a little while back, and they have continued test-flying test-variants with the WS-13A engine they're developing for the aircraft. The continuing test-flights, despite Pakistan already inducting the aircraft, would logically suggest Chinese interest. But I doubt if they'll go for JF-17s with Russian RD-93 engines, given the headaches Russia has been giving them over the engines.

Russia knows China's own engine development projects are coming along nicely but they've still got China in their control for a little more time, China was really hoping they wouldn't have to order more AL-31s for their J-10s but problems producing WS-10s in sufficient numbers neccessitated another Russian deal. And the comments from all sides have been pretty public, Russians accusing Chinese of stealing and pushing prices up, etc.

China has large numbers of J-6, J-7s to replace, if it wants to maintain the size of it's airforce(which they clearly do, they're trying to compete with the USAF which's combat aircraft fleet numbers in the thousands not the hundreds), the JF-17(which, if you keep up with Chinese sources, is rumoured likely to have the J-9 designation in PLAAF service) would very likely be inducted. But not with Russian engines, senior officials from Russia's aeronautics industry already went public about how Russia should block RD-93(JF-17's engine) sales to China in order to prevent competition from the JF-17 in many markets later on. China obviously can't have it's fleet be at the mercy of Russia, especially the J-9/FC-1 fleet which would likely be a large fleet, given the J-6, J-7 fleet it would replace is very large.

China has already stopped developing the J-7, the JL-9 is likely to be the most advanced MiG-21 modification we'll ever see. So unless China goes all-out and spends alot more money putting J-10s on their bases bordering Mongolia, JF-17s would very likely be a nice inexpensive backup option for places China doesn't need J-10, -11s, or J-20s for.
WOW. Thanks for your extremely in depth post. Using the JF-17 for lower threat regions does seem viable. However, with China's rising power, perhaps they simply don't want to use a inferior aircraft just to save some money. I mean the U.S has I believe over a thousand F-16's, and they are similar to the J-10 in price and capabilities I think.... So to match this, maybe China will use it's J-10 as a backbone fighter rather than the JF-17.

Placing J-10's on less risker boarders might save some money but in case of a conflict wouldn't the J-10's on say the border of Mongolia act as a backup to squadrons to the rest of the country ? Like if all the J-10's around Beijing are taken down J-10's from the Mongolian border could be brought in as replacement. While if they were JF-17's they would be much less useful.

What are your thoughts on this ?
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Old October 27th, 2011   #33
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@legoboy

I don't think the JFT is as mediocre as it's made out to be over here. Some official statements coming out of China, Pakistan, and even Farnborrough highlight that.

For example, the Thunder's demo at Zhuhai surprised the Chinese audience there, Wng Cmdr Khalid Mehmood(who's been involved in the JFT programme for many many years) talked about this in an interview on Sept 6 this year. According to him, the crowd at Zhuhai, which didn't know any better, believed the JFT to be superior to the J-10, mainly due to it's superior manouvering. The huge delta wings on the J-10 are probably not very helpful in sub-sonic manouverability(JF-17 actually seems to outdo the J-10 in this). Cmdr Khalid also quoted the Chengdu designers(who had worked on the JF-17 and the J-10) as saying that overall the J-10 was a better aircraft, but the JF-17 had won the crowd there because of superior piloting.

No-one in their right mind would say the JF-17 is equal or superior to the J-10, they both fit in entirely different categories(J-10 isn't a Light Fighter). The real question is, how much of a difference really exists in the JF-17 and the J-10. It's very easy to say the JF-17 is inferior or "bad", but an in-depth analysis of components is required to do a fair analysis. It's important to keep in mind the fact that many components in JF-17's avionics suite were derived from the J-10(or atleast, in some way, benefitted from the work and experience China's aeronautics sector had gained working on the J-10). That means some things like the JF-17's radar, the KLJ-7, have a very similar design to J-10's KLJ-10 - the main difference is KLJ-7's sender/reciever dish, which ofcourse does reduce the performance. The future AESA radar programmes for both these aircraft are also going on in parrallel at NRIET. Ofcourse it's not a one-way street, with advancements like the DSI inlets first being made for the JF-17 and later on moving on to the J-10. I've also seen many experts talk about the JF-17's MMI(Man Machine Interface), being the most advanced of any Chinese aircraft for years before the J-10B was developed. JF-17's pilot-friendly cockpit with large Multi-Function Displays even look much more advanced than the J-10A's 90's vintage cockpit design.

So the point I'm trying to make is, the JF-17's still a pretty capable little fighter, and given the little tidbits of info coming out of China from time to time(like their flight-tests on the JF-17 using the WS-13/A engine) seem to suggest that China also realizes this. You mentioned the F-16(and USAF's large fleet), look at how far the F-16 has come from what it was in 1976 when it first flew. The F-16 has come a very long way over the course of it's life, the Thunder's just at the beginning of it's lifespan. We're still "in the 70's" so to speak, and we're likely to see quiet a few modifications on these aircraft. Look at how far Turkey's modernized F-4/F-5 fleet's come over the decades, we *own* the JF-17 and have alot more freedom to tinker with it, that'd suggest modifications at a grander scale.

Even right now, given that the JFT uses the same frontline missile/weapons suite the J-10B(and even the J-20) would use, like the latest SD-10B AAM, PL-8C/D(or whatever the latest Israeli Python derivative heat-seekers China has), China shouldn't have a problem deploying this in Mongolia. This bird provides vastly superior capabilities to the J-6/J-7s they employ now, and for a pretty decent cost.
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Old October 27th, 2011   #34
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Old October 28th, 2011   #35
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I

China has large numbers of J-6, J-7s to replace, if it wants to maintain the size of it's airforce(which they clearly do, they're trying to compete with the USAF which's combat aircraft fleet numbers in the thousands not the hundreds),
Can you put your source (and in here official source not some fan boys fantasy) saying that China wants to replace all the J-6 ? Replacing J-6 means building 3000 more aircraft. Remembered the most numerous aircraft in PLAF inventory is J-6 and not J-7. PLAF already said that J-10 is to replace J-7. No PLAF new fighters program intended to replace J-6. If they ever want to replace J-6, then perhaps they will thinking of JF-17. After all if they want to replace J-6, then they need something that relative cheap and less sophisticated then J-10 to fill the gap.
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Old October 28th, 2011   #36
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For example, the Thunder's demo at Zhuhai surprised the Chinese audience there, Wng Cmdr Khalid Mehmood(involved in the JFT programme for many years) talked about this in an interview on Sept 6 this year. According to him, the crowd at Zhuhai, which didn't know any better, believed the JFT to be superior to the J-10, mainly due to it's superior manouvering. The large delta wings on the J-10 aren't very helpful in sub-sonic manouverability(JF-17 actually seems to do better). Cmdr Khalid also quoted the Chengdu designers(who had worked on the JF-17 and the J-10) as saying that overall the J-10 was a better aircraft, but the JF-17 had won the crowd there because of superior piloting.
that tidbit alone should have had serious commentators wondering at the merits of the message against a sophisicated audience.

its technical nonsense without context, and the WCDR did not use context.
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Old October 28th, 2011   #37
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Can you put your source (and in here official source not some fan boys fantasy) saying that China wants to replace all the J-6 ? Replacing J-6 means building 3000 more aircraft.
Nope. Those 3000 J-6 are mostly scattered around the world in saucepans, bicycles, & other things which incorporate recycled aluminium. The last survivors in front line service were retired several years ago, & the remaining JJ-6 trainers are being replaced by newer types.

The PLAAF has greatly reduced fighter numbers, while increasing quality.
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Old October 29th, 2011   #38
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There has to be something wrong for the PLAAF not to have the JF-17 in its air force. What really going on with this jet? It just don't seem right for it to just go into a some joint production with the Pakistan Air Force. Has to be a problem with the program if it let the PAF have deal like that. It don't make scent.
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Old October 29th, 2011   #39
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There has to be something wrong for the PLAAF not to have the JF-17 in its air force.
Why? It was an export partner/development project.

if it doesn't fit in their orbat then it doesn't matter as there was a political imperative as well.
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Old October 30th, 2011   #40
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To keep this short:

1. FC-1/JF-17 was developed mainly for the export market. The Chinese military did not actually provide much funding for the project. It was mainly supported by plane developer's own money as well as Pakistan.

2. China does not aim to maintain the current number of fighter planes. In fact, the mainstay of the air force has been shrinking for the past two decades. J-10 pretty much fills up any role JF-17 can take.

3. J-6 is no longer in active service, and there are no plans to replace them.
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Old October 30th, 2011   #41
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There has to be something wrong for the PLAAF not to have the JF-17 in its air force. What really going on with this jet? It just don't seem right for it to just go into a some joint production with the Pakistan Air Force. Has to be a problem with the program if it let the PAF have deal like that. It don't make scent.
Not really. China has multiple simultaneous TACAIR replacement programs runnng. Perhaps they don't simply have the capacity to introduce yet another type at the same time?

Even in China there has to be a finite number of resources to introduce a new tactical fighter type, both financial and technical. China hasn't bought the JF-17 yet, it's concentrating on J-10, J-20 and others. That doesn't mean they won't ever be interested in it.
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Old October 30th, 2011   #42
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To keep this short:

1. FC-1/JF-17 was developed mainly for the export market. The Chinese military did not actually provide much funding for the project. It was mainly supported by plane developer's own money as well as Pakistan.

2. China does not aim to maintain the current number of fighter planes. In fact, the mainstay of the air force has been shrinking for the past two decades. J-10 pretty much fills up any role JF-17 can take.

3. J-6 is no longer in active service, and there are no plans to replace them.
From what PLAF so far indicated in their plan, that's about it. Why some people think that since JF-17 is going to be used extensively by PAF, then PLAF has to use them also..well it's beyond me

Ooo..perhaps because in some circle think JF-17 is better than J-10..hmmmm
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Old October 30th, 2011   #43
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There has to be something wrong for the PLAAF not to have the JF-17 in its air force. What really going on with this jet? It just don't seem right for it to just go into a some joint production with the Pakistan Air Force. Has to be a problem with the program if it let the PAF have deal like that. It don't make scent.
Take a look at the F-5A. Operated by many air forces successfully, decent record where used in combat. Only operated by the USA in small numbers for "combat evaluation" by one squadron in Vietnam, & that was handed over to S. Vietnam after 2 years.

Or the F-5E, which was only used by the USA for training, in DACT "aggressor" units.

There have been other cases of private venture, joint private/overseas developments, losing candidates in internal selections being chosen by foreign forces with different needs from the home forces, etc. The export-only type is not a new idea, & it has respectable antecedents.
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Old October 30th, 2011   #44
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From what PLAF so far indicated in their plan, that's about it. Why some people think that since JF-17 is going to be used extensively by PAF, then PLAF has to use them also..well it's beyond me

Ooo..perhaps because in some circle think JF-17 is better than J-10..hmmmm
Depends on your definition of better. If you need 180 fighters to replace legacy fighters in significant numbers than it may very well be "better" than a J-10...

Even in Pakistan it is intended only as the "low" but significant in numbers part of their force.

The PAF chief has acknowledged plenty of times the JF-17 Block I is less capable than the F-16 Block 52's they have and the J-10's they want, but it meets their requirements for a low end 4th gen fighter to replace theie older fighters and increase overall capability.

Only those inspired with nationalistic fervour would argue otherwise, much in the way that some do for the Tejas, some do for the Gripen, SU-30, Rafale, F-22 and so on.
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Old October 31st, 2011   #45
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The PAF chief has acknowledged plenty of times the JF-17 Block I is less capable than the F-16 Block 52's they have and the J-10's they want, but it meets their requirements for a low end 4th gen fighter to replace theie older fighters and increase overall capability.
True, the only thing that JF-17 is better than J-10 is relatively cheaper and less sophisticated than J-10, thus it can be mass produced then J-10. That's why I said before, if China decide to replace all J-6 on one on one basis, then perhaps they need JF-17, since it will be difficult even for China to produce 3000 + J-10 to replace all J-6.

However just like F-20, even-though it's a good Fighter, it's useless for USAF since they already have F-16. Similar situation happen in here with PLAF for J-10 and JF-17. JF-17 and J-10 are both China products, and PLAF know what're the capabilities of both aircraft. I just stipulated if someone question PLAF decision for not using JF-17, well why they don't question USAF decision for not extensively using F-5E/F-20 ?
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