Over 130 aircraft of various types will participate in the 10th China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition to be unveiled on November 11, 2014 in Zhuhai of south China’s Guangdong province, and the J-31 stealth fighter will also appear in Zhuhai and conduct a demonstration flight, according to Nanfang Daily.
The J-31 stealth fighter is very likely to be put into mass production within five years, and has a big chance of being a carrier-borne type, said Xu Yongling, aviation expert, in an interview.
It has been just two years since the successful maiden flight of the J-31 in 2012. As a fighter under test, the J-31 is now in the primary stage of performance development.
“It is still difficult for it to give a demonstration flight, but as an export-oriented aircraft, it may showcase itself by appearing and making a sensational effect at the air show,” said Xu Yongling.
In the opinion of Xu Yongling, the J-31 is a low-end version of the fourth-generation warplanes. With China’s talent and technology advantages gained from its development of the third-generation warplanes, it is possible to realize design finalization and mass production of the J-31 within five years.
The engine has been a disadvantage in the aviation technology field of China. “But this disadvantage is being made up for, and there will be good news soon,” said Xu Yongling. New products will appear in fields of high-thrust engines, medium-thrust engines and small-thrust engines in China. Such primary models as the J-31 will definitely be equipped with domestically-made engines, so that it is possible for China to cease its heavy reliance on the import of engines for its major models.
Xu Yongling also pointed out that for the carrier-borne aircraft in various countries, it is the general trend for stealth fighters to be commissioned on aircraft carriers, but the possibility of using the fourth-generation warplanes to completely substitute the third-generation ones is small. The aircraft carrier fleets mainly equipped with the fourth-generation warplanes and the aircraft carrier fleets mainly equipped with the third-generation warplanes will appear simultaneously in future.
“The J-31 is very likely to be commissioned on the aircraft carrier, but no news concerning the compatibility between the J-31 and carrier-borne aircraft technology is available now. Therefore, it is estimated that the J-31 will be commissioned on the aircraft carrier later than it is commissioned into the troops,” according to Xu Yongling.