Military Review

JF-17 Sino-Pakistani MIG-21 New Age

One of the most interesting new warplanes on display at the Farnborough Air Show in the second half of July was the JF-17 (FC-1) light multirole fighter developed by the Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation (CAC) of China and recently adopted for service with the Pakistani Air Force. Serial production of aircraft is carried out jointly by the corporation in Chengdu and the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC), located in Kamra. Two JF-17s, assembled in Pakistan this year, arrived at Farnborough. This is the first public presentation of the new Sino-Pakistani fighter jet at the International Airshow: despite the fact that the prototype aircraft took off in China back in 2003, the "live" aircraft has never been shown on aviation exhibitions, even in the Chinese Zhuhai - until now everything was limited only to the demonstration of models and layouts. A light fighter of the 1O-ton class with relatively modern equipment and weapons has already received the nickname "MiG-21 of the XXI century" from journalists. Indeed, the JF-17 was born in China as the successor to the J-7 (F-7) aircraft produced here for many years - clones of the legendary Soviet MiG-21. However, time will tell whether the novelty will be able to gain such popularity in the world as the famous domestic fighter had. So far, JF-17 is purchased only by the Pakistani Air Force, and nothing is even known about the intentions to receive it by the People's Liberation Army of China. Nevertheless, interest in the aircraft is already being shown in a number of countries that have traditionally acquired Chinese fighters and whose capabilities do not allow them to have more expensive Western-made aircraft. The debut of the JF-17 at Farnborough, therefore, can be seen as the beginning of an active campaign to promote the Sino-Pakistani fighter to the world market.

History in brief

History A new lightweight Sino-Pakistani fighter originates in the second half of the 80-s, when Pakistan began to consider the possibility of replacing outdated F-6 aircraft (Chinese clone of Soviet MiG-19), and in the future - F-7 (Chinese version of the MiG-21, in the modification of the F-7P in large quantities supplied by the Pakistani Air Force). As part of the Saber II project (Saber II) in the PRC and Pakistan, the possibility of a radical modernization of F-7 using modern Western equipment has been studied. The American company Grumman was involved in the work, a trilateral contract with which was concluded in January of 1987. The results, however, were disappointing: the plane turned out to be more expensive than the United States offered to Pakistan for only $ 13 million F-16, and its characteristics and operational capabilities are worse. In addition, in 1989, after the events on the Tiananmen Square in Beijing, the US government banned the cooperation of American companies with China, and Grumman had to exit the program. The attempts of the PRC and Pakistan to continue the “Saber II” project without an American partner were not crowned with success: the sanctions imposed on 1990 against Pakistan, which refused to accede to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty weapons, did not leave a chance to get the necessary avionics of western production.

JF-17 Sino-Pakistani MIG-21 New AgeFC-1's first flight copy
next test flight

In China, at the Chengdu plant, however, work on creating the successor to the F-7 was unilaterally continued. The project was named Super 7, and in February, 1992, the Chinese aviation import corporation CATIC, offered it to Pakistan on terms of equal financial participation and risk sharing. At the first stage, the “Super 7” was planned to be equipped with Chinese-made equipment and weapons with the possibility of subsequent adaptation of Western models. The assembly of serial aircraft in the future was supposed to be adjusted at the facilities of the Pakistan Aircraft Building Complex RAC, which already has experience in repairing Chinese fighters and in manufacturing spare parts for them. At the beginning of 1994, the Pakistan Air Force accepted the Chinese proposal, and in January, the 1995 side signed an agreement of intent.

Fourth prototype PT-4 with bomb
load and suspension tanks

In 1998, an intergovernmental agreement was signed between China and Pakistan on joint development and production of a new fighter, called FC-1 in China (from Fighter China, the first fighter of the original Chinese design). In June 1999, the parties signed a firm contract, but already in October, the program was expected to hit again: the sanctions imposed by the Kargil conflict on Pakistan did not allow a number of potential European suppliers of modern avionics to continue to participate, including French Sazhem and Thomson. and the British "BAE Systems" (offers to foreign companies to participate in the tender for the development and supply of equipment for the aircraft were sent to the Pakistani Air Force back in June, 1996).

Whatever it was, the development of the fighter in 2000 was continued: the main emphasis in the circumstances was placed on the creation of the actual aircraft, the tests of which in any case will take a lot of time. Therefore, a simple wait, until it is possible to solve the problem with a complete set of a fighter with the required Pakistani Air Forces with modern Western equipment, could lead to even greater delays in the creation of the aircraft. In January, 2003 signed a contract for the development of a simplified complex of on-board equipment made in China for the first experienced FC-1.

Meanwhile, at the factory in Chengdu, the construction of the first prototype fighter was already in full swing. The Russian twin-turbojet engine with the RD-93 afterburner chamber, a modification of the RD-29 serials used on MiG-33 fighters adapted for use on a single-engine aircraft, was chosen as the power plant for them. The development of the modified RD-93, which differed from the prototype using the lower gear box, new attachment points to the airframe and a modified control system while maintaining the main traction, expenditure and weight and size characteristics, was carried out by the St. Petersburg firm Klimov. It is in 2002 - 2003. delivered to China the first experienced RD-93 engines for picking FC-1 prototypes.

The building in Chengdu was laid six prototypes of the new fighter, including four flight. The first of them (RT-1) was ready for the summer of 2003, and 25 of August of the same year, test pilot Wang Wendjian picked it up on the first flight. On the same day, Pakistani Air Force announced the assignment of a new name to the aircraft - JF-17 (JF - from Joint Fighter, i.e. the "single fighter", which emphasized the international, Chinese-Pakistani nature of the program, and the number "17" symbolized that the aircraft will become the most modern fighter aircraft of Pakistan Air Force, following the most advanced Pakistani fighter F-16). At the same time, the car was given a proper name - "Thunder" {Thunder - "Thunder"). In China, the fighter has retained the old designation - FC-1.

From the first flight to the first delivery

The second prototype FC-1 / JF-17 (РТ-2) was intended for static tests, and the third (РТ-3) became the second flight model. Its construction in Chengdu was completed less than a year after the first car, and on 9 on April 2004, it took off. Two years later, 28 on April 2006 was joined by the prototype RT-4, which, in addition to assessing the characteristics of stability and controllability, maneuverability, takeoff and landing characteristics, and the work of the main onboard systems, which was carried out To begin working out the complex of onboard equipment made in China. Similar tasks were faced by the sixth prototype (PT-6), which made the first flight of 10 in September of 2006, and the fifth sample (PT-5) was intended for repeated static and life tests.

The first pre-series JF-17 (№07-101) in a special color on the air parade over Islamabad

Ground and flight tests of all prototypes of FC-1 / JF-17 were held in China, at the flight base of the CAC corporation in Chengdu, at the CFTE flight research center in Yenlian and at the PLA Air Force test sites. At the same time since the spring of 2004, Pakistani pilots took an active part in them. Its first flight on the third prototype of JF-17 Pakistan Air Force pilots Majors Mohammad Ehsan ul Haq and Rashid Habib completed already in April 10 2004 was later joined by four more Pakistani pilot, retrained in the British Royal School of test pilots at Boscombe Down and Chinese flight test center CFTE. Despite the fact that the production and testing of the first JF-17 took place in China, Pakistani specialists took a very active part in the program, starting with the development of requirements and concepts and directly involved in the design, construction and testing process. To coordinate work in Pakistan, in February 1995, the Super 7 Project Directorate was established, headed by successively Aviation Vice Marshals Said Anwar, Zahid Anis, Hamid Hawaj and Shahid Latif, and since October 2003, the Project Management Directorate of JF- 17, which since April 2006 was headed by the Vice-Marshal of Aviation Farhat Hussein Khan, and now the Vice-Marshal of Aviation Mohammad Arif.

The first JF-17 (No.09-111), fully
collected by PAC Pakistan, November 2009

Originally conceived in Chengdu as a further development of the F-7, the new fighter eventually acquired a completely new look. With Chinese clones MiG-21, it is essentially related only to close dimensions (aircraft length - 14 m, wing span - 8,5 m, wing area - 24 m2) and mass (empty aircraft weighs 6450 kg, normal take-off weight is 9100 kg, and maximum - 12 400 kg), yes the ventral gun installation caliber 23 mm. FC-1 received side unregulated air intakes, so that in the nose of the fuselage there was enough space for modern on-board radar (for now - the Chinese KLJ-7). The triangular wing is equipped with a fairly developed influx, but that the aircraft is made according to the integral layout of the airframe, typical of most fourth-generation fighter jets, is out of the question. Mechanization of the wing, including swiveling socks and flaps, has automatic control depending on the speed and angle of attack to increase maneuverability. According to the aircraft control system, a compromise solution was chosen: electric remote control is implemented only in the pitch channel, and in terms of roll and heading the control system is traditional, mechanical, with automatic stability control. At JF-17, a fairly economical and high-torque TRDDF is used for contemporaries, and instrumentation equipment is built on the principle of a “glass cabin” with three large multifunctional indicators and a HUD.

In parallel with the flight tests of the prototypes and taking into account the comments made on them, the installation batch of eight pre-production JF-17s that were to be passed military tests in Pakistan was laid in Chengdu. The first two vehicles from this consignment were delivered from China to Pakistan in February 2007. Their final assembly was carried out at the sites of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Kamra (Punjab province in northeast Pakistan). Here 2 March 2007, they were flown around by Pakistani military pilots - Lieutenant Colonel Ahsan Rafik, appointed commander of the test unit JF-17 (JF-17 Test and Evaluation Flight) and Major Hakim Raza. The airplanes received the 07-101 and 07-102 airborne numbers (the first two digits in the number according to the tradition in the Pakistan Air Force indicate the year of manufacture or delivery of the aircraft). Three weeks later, 23 March 2007, both pilots demonstrated the latest Pakistani fighters in an air parade in

Islamabad in honor of the anniversary of the armed forces of Pakistan. At the same time, JF-17 "No." 07-101 on the eve of the parade received a special color in the colors of the Pakistani and Chinese state flags.

A year later, the remaining six machines of the installment batch arrived in Kamra from the People's Republic of China: “No.” 07-103, 07-104 and 07-105 (in February 2008) and “No.” 08-106, 08-107 and 08-108 ( in March). The overflights were performed by Lieutenant Colonels Ahsan, Khalid, Zaim and Hakim. At the next parade in Islamabad, 23 March 2008, viewers could see in the sky over the Pakistani capital already four JF-17 in a tight battle formation.

Made in Pakistan

"We are not just assembling these fighters at our PAC, like some factories involved in the" screwdriver assembly "of aircraft. We ourselves are actively manufacturing parts and assemblies for them," said JF-17 of the Pakistani Directorate of Farnborough. He stressed that serious efforts are now being made to expand the production capacity of the Pakistan Aircraft Complex in Kamra to increase the production, maintenance and repair of JF-17: "At present, we have a complex of four plants in Kamra that employ a large number of employees , because of what we already call this place "Thunder City".

The official launch of the PAC production line for the construction of the JF-17 took place on 22 on January 2008, and on November 23 on 2009, the first Pakistan-made fighter, which received the 09-111 No. and bright the green color with symbols of the national flag of Pakistan (the first two serial JF-17, "No." 09-109 and 09-110, were collected in Chengdu). By July of this year, 16 aircraft had already been released, including JF-17 aircraft, incl. eight pre-series and eight serial (up to the "No." 10-116), six of them - directly in Pakistan. Two such fighters, with onboard "No." 10-113 and 10-114 (serial "No." 0108 and 0106, respectively), and became participants in the Farnborough air show. Unfortunately, they were shown only in a static exposition - they arrived at the exhibition a few days before it began, performing two intermediate landings for refueling in Saudi Arabia and Turkey, and flew home two days after closing. Therefore, the participants and visitors of the air show failed to see them in the sky, but Pakistani representatives promised Vzlyot correspondent that this could be done already this autumn, at an exhibition in Zhuhai. where new Pakistan Air Force will be on display in the flight program.

The production capacity of the PAC today provides for the production of 15 - 25 of JF-17 airplanes annually (one or two aircraft per month), and, as stated in Farnborough, "Pakistan’s participation in the joint production of fighters will exceed 50%." In the meantime, apparently, the RAS is specialized only in the manufacture of individual parts and aggregates of JF-17 and their final assembly. The JF-17 Program Directorate, which was distributed at the official press release, reported that the fighters will be produced in batches (blocks) of 50 machines, each subsequent one will differ from the previous implementation of a number of improvements. The first 50 aircraft of Pakistan Air Force expect to receive before the end of 2012. The launch contract for 42 serial machines (eight more, apparently, fell on the machines of the installation batch) was signed by Pakistani Air Force 7 March 2009. At the same time, by 2015 they should have already received 150 such fighters, and the overall needs of Pakistan for JF-17 are estimated at 250 aircraft, which should completely replace the F-7 and Mirage fighters currently in service and the A-5 fighter-bombers.

Первым подразделением ВВС Пакистана, эксплуатирующим JF-17, стал сформированный 20 февраля 2007 г. уже упоминавшийся испытательный отряд (Т&Е Flight), приступивший к освоению нового типа самолета личным составом, проведению войсковых испытаний и подготовке инструкций по производству полетов, боевому применению и техническому обслуживанию. На его вооружение поступили восемь самолетов установочной партии. 18 февраля 2010 г. на авиабазе "Минхас" (Minhas) в Камре, вблизи производственного комплекса РАС, была сформирована и первая регулярная строевая часть ВВС Пакистана, вооруженная серийными истребителями JF-17, - 26-я авиаэскадрилья во главе с подполковником Халидом Мехмудом.

Russian "heart" JF-17

Today's experienced, pre-production and first production fighter jets Flying JF-17 are equipped with systems designed and manufactured in the PRC (with the participation of Pakistan). The only exception is the power plant: the engines for them are supplied from Russia, which has often been the cause of serious concern on the part of another major partner of our country in military-technical cooperation and at the same time “sworn friend”

Pakistan - India. And recently, when FC-1 / JF-17, which started to actively move to third countries, apparently faced a competitive struggle for a potential lucrative contract with the domestic MiG-29, the question of the advisability of continuing deliveries of RD-93 to China was raised in Russia. But first things first.

Following the delivery by Klimov of the first prototype engines for FC-1 prototypes, in order to ensure the serial production of these fighters in April 2005, the PRC and Russia signed a contract for the supply of one hundred serial RD-93, estimated at 238 million dollars, with the possibility of further expanding the order to 500 units. The first 15 of them were made in 2005-2006. the company "Klimov", and the production and supply of the rest is carried out with 2006, the Moscow machine-building enterprise them. V.V. Chernyshev. In the conditions of the practical absence of the state defense order, the Chinese contract (along with the production of RD-ZZMK for the Indian MiG-29K / KUB and the repair of previously released engines) became a serious help in a difficult situation at the Moscow plant. Therefore, expecting the imminent completion of the first part of the transaction, his management was interested in the implementation of the option. The second contract for the supply to China of the 100 following RD-93 for Pakistani JF-17 was planned to be signed this spring, however, apparently, the deal has not yet taken place.

As the Kommersant newspaper reported in early July, the head of RSK MiG and the Sukhoi company Mikhail Pogosyan spoke against the continuation of supplies, who sent corresponding letters to the FSMTC and Rosoboronexport. The reason was the fact that the Sino-Pakistani fighter JF-17 began to make real competition to the domestic MiG-29 in some foreign markets. According to the newspaper, we are talking about, in particular, about Egypt, to which Pakistan and China offered to supply and co-produce FC-1 / JF-17. And, as you know, RSK MiG has been negotiating for a long time about promoting its MiG-29 to this country. Of course, the combat capabilities of MiGs are noticeably higher, but the price at which the Sino-Pakistani fighter is offered is significantly lower: according to official Pakistani data, it is about 15 million dollars, while the latest MiG-29 of the latest modifications are sold for 30 -40 million dollars.

As explained to Kommersant in Rosoboronexport, "re-export is carried out in accordance with the decisions of the government of the Russian Federation," and permission for China's possible supply of RD-93 engines from the FC-1 aircraft to Egypt, as well as Nigeria, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Algeria FSMTC was issued back in November 2007. The current head of RSK MiG, Mikhail Pogosyan, stated in this connection that he was generally not against the re-export of individual technologies, "but this must be agreed with the manufacturers of the final products so that re-exports will not harm them" . However, until now, the practice of such coordination, we apparently did not exist. Or, in this particular case, the benefit from the delivery of a large batch of engines to the PRC was recognized as more substantial.

Anyway, the continuation of the production of RD-93 on the MMP them. V.V. Chernyshev so far, apparently, remains in question. Meanwhile, given the constant pressure on Russia on this issue from India and trying to get rid of dependence on engine supplies from our country, China has been working for more than a year on its own analogue of the RD-93, called WS-13 "Taishan". According to some reports, the bench tests of the first WS-13 model were launched in China back in 2006, and at present the experienced engine is already flying aboard one of the FC-1 prototypes in Chengdu. However, as Vice-Marshal of Aviation Mohammad Arif, JF-17 program manager from Pakistan Air Force, told Farnborough, "It will take a long time to finish this engine, maybe five years or more." At the same time, other Pakistani representatives are not inclined to share the pessimism of their boss, believing that "he voiced the worst case scenario, and in fact the engine can be ready much earlier."

There is no doubt that the design of the Chinese WS-13 is based on the same RD-93 (just as when creating the WS-10 Tayhan engine for the J-10, J-11B and J-15 fighters, which was first demonstrated at the exhibition in Zhuhai in November 2008, the technical solutions implemented in the AL-31F supplied from Russia were widely used. However, as in the case of Taihan, when creating the WS-13, Chinese specialists apparently again had to face the problems of ensuring reliability and given weight requirements - the practical experience of developing and own production (even if licensed ) modern turbofans. But, as we know, progress in Chinese engineering has been taking leaps and bounds in recent years, and the day is probably not far off when China itself will also abandon the import of Russian aircraft engines, providing acceptable characteristics of its own developments.

Avionics and weapons

So far, the JF-17 aircraft are equipped with airborne electronic equipment exclusively of Chinese design. The architecture of building the avionics complex is based on two multiplex channels of information exchange, made according to the MIL-STD 1553В standard, with two central computers.

The main sighting system of the fighter is a multi-mode pulse-Doppler radar with a KLJ-7 slot antenna array and an air-cooled transmitter that provides tracking of "a significant number" of targets. For the detection and tracking of ground targets and the use of high-precision weapons on them, the aircraft can be equipped with a container optical-electronic system with thermal and laser channels (the Chinese WMD-17 targeting container was demonstrated at the Farnborough exhibition near JF-7). The use of a helmet-mounted target designation and indication system is also provided.

Air-to-air missiles used on a JF-17 aircraft

The basis of the navigation complex is a satellite-coupled inertial system based on ring laser gyroscopes and standard radio navigation equipment (ILS, TACA1Cidr.).

The information and control field of the cockpit is built using the HOTAS concept and includes three large-format multifunctional color liquid-crystal indicators with the function of data transmission and display of a digital terrain map and an indicator against the background of the windshield with an angle of view of at least 25 °. For recording information is a color video camera and VCR.

The communication system includes two VHF radios and an information exchange system. The defense complex is represented by radiation warning and missile attack stations. In Farnborough, an EW-type KG300G container system developed by the Chinese Electronic Technology Corporation (CETC) was demonstrated next to the aircraft.

Armament, equipment container systems and hanging tanks on the JF-17 can be placed on seven suspension points, with two points on the wingtips only used for suspending melee air-to-air missiles, and the inner wing and ventral nodes are mainly for outboard tanks (one capacity 800 l under the fuselage and two 800 or 1100 l under the wing). Instead of a tank under the fuselage, one free-fall or guided bomb of a caliber of 2000 pounds (about 900 kg) may be suspended. Bombs of smaller caliber, as well as various types of guided missiles and EW containers and target designation are placed on the mid-wing points of the suspension. Thus, the ammunition capacity of a fighter in one departure is not great: in the air-to-air variant it does not exceed four missiles, and in solving the air-to-surface tasks it is one 900 kg caliber (Mc84 or GBU-10 type), four 450 kg caliber bombs (type McKnumx on dual holders), similar container systems or incendiary tanks, as well as one or two air to ship missiles or air to radar. The total mass of the combat load (including outboard fuel tanks) does not exceed 82 kg. The pilot also has a built-in double-barreled X-gun caliber 3600 mm.

Optical Electronically Attached Container WMD-7

The main armament of JF-17 for hitting air targets in the first stage should be Chinese melee air-to-air missiles with two-spectral thermal homing heads PL-5EII and medium-range missiles with active radar homing SD-10A (export version of Chinese PL -12). The first of them can be considered as an analogue of the latest versions of the American AIM-9 "Sidewinder" rocket, but obtained through the own development of the Soviet P-ES and P-13М copied in the PRC. The second can be compared with the American AIM-120 AMRAAM and the Russian RVV-AE.

The development of the PL-5 rocket (in the version of PL-5A with semi-active radar and PL-5B with thermal seeker) based on the Soviet R-ZR and R-ZS began in China as early as 1966, however it could only be put into service after 20 years, and only in the version with TGS. Later, an improved PL-5C was developed and, finally, in the 90s. - substantially upgraded PL-5E with a significantly reduced mass and - for the first time - with the possibility of a full-time attack of the target. The modification of the latter is the PL-5EII rocket, demonstrated on the suspension of both JF-17 in Farnborough. It was developed by the Luoyang Scientific-Production Center for Optoelectronic Technologies (LOEC).

The SD-10A rocket (in the PLA Air Force has the name PL-12) is an original Chinese design, equipped with an active radar homing head (at the initial stage of the flight, guidance is inertial, with radio correction). Its creation in Luoyang began in 1997, and in August 2005, after a series of successful launches from the fighters, the missile tests were completed. The PL-12 is in service with the PLA Air Force with the 2005 and can be used with the J-8F, J-10 and J-11B fighters.

As it became known at the Farnborough air show, tests of the PL-5EII missiles and free-fall bombs as part of the JF-17 aircraft weapons have already been completed (their first tests from the FC-1 prototypes were launched in China in July 2008). The medium-range SD-10A is still ongoing and can only be completed by the end of this year. Also, work is underway to incorporate into the JF-17 armament some of the types of aviation weapons that are already in Pakistan or ordered by them in other countries - in particular, the Brazilian anti-radar missile MAR-1. It is worth noting that in Farnborough, along with the JF-17 aircraft, a heavy Chinese anti-ship missile C-802А was also demonstrated, which is also likely to be integrated into the fighter’s weapons system. It was also possible to see here the planning LS-6 bomb with inertial-satellite guidance, already familiar from exhibitions in Zhuhai, equipped with modules of the wing and tail rudder that was opened after the drop. Its development at LOEC was launched in 2003 and successfully completed in 2006 after a series of successful drops from the J-8B fighter.

While the Chinese engineers and testers and the Pakistani military are mastering and integrating the so-called first stage systems (i.e., the Chinese design) into the aircraft, negotiations continue on the further development of the JF-17 equipment and weapons complex through the introduction of Western-made samples. So, in February of this year, it became known that an interest was shown in adapting to the aircraft the French radar of the RC400 type from the Thales company and the Mika medium-range missiles, as well as some other high-precision weapons. It is believed that Pakistan’s long-standing desire to integrate European avionics and weapons on board the JF-17 could be implemented already in the second batch of 50 serial fighters, which are planned to be launched with 2013 in

"First Chinese" is not only for Pakistan?

Having put into service the first production aircraft and inspired by the positive reviews of the Pakistani military, the creators of JF-17 do not intend to be limited to the Pakistan market alone. Of course, the order in 150 fighters (with the prospect of expansion to 250) is a very good result. But after all, there are quite a few countries in the world that are used to buying, if not far from the most advanced, but nevertheless quite combat-ready, and, most importantly, cheap Chinese-made aircraft. And the competition in the class of supersonic 10-ton fighters is not so strong: so, the Indian LCA "Tedzhas" still can not get out of the flight test stage, and its export prospects are somewhat uncertain, for example, the Swedish "Gripen", which has already won a number countries of Europe and South Africa, is clearly in a different price category.

Under these conditions, with the gradual departure from the scene of the MiG-21 and F-7, the developers of the “first Chinese fighter” FC-1 (although it has not yet caused real, supported by orders, interest from the military in their homeland) can well count on their "piece of cake" in the global market. Soon after the exhibition in Farnborough, a list of countries showing an interest in the novelty appeared in print. Among them are Azerbaijan (!), Bangladesh, Venezuela, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Iran, Congo, Nigeria, Sudan, Turkey, the Philippines, Sri Lanka. Some of them already have quite a wealth of experience in operating Chinese aircraft, which, combined with the traditionally low price of equipment from the Middle Kingdom, can be a decisive factor for preferences.

Of course, in the conditions of today's realities, to beat the “world record” of the legendary MiG-21, which at one time was spreading over fifty countries from around the world, with a total “circulation” of almost 15 thousand copies (together with different versions of F-7), the Sino-Pakistani aircraft is unlikely whether succeed. But gaining popularity as an easy and cheap fighter is quite real. So maybe those who, with some irony, called him at Farnborough just like the “XX-Century MiG-21 of 21st Century” could be right?

JF-17 Thunder serial fighter from the 26 Squadron of the Pakistan Air Force

Pakistan Air Force: on the road to radical modernization

Принятие на вооружение JF-17 - первого боевого самолета, производимого национальной авиапромышленностью Пакистана, -серьезный вклад в стартовавшую недавно программу радикальной модернизации пакистанских ВВС. В конце прошлого года в Пакистан прибыл первый из четырех заказанных на Украине самолетов-заправщиков Ил-78 советского производства, которые будут использоваться для дозаправки в воздухе имеющихся "Миражей", а позднее, после комплектации топливоприемными штангами, - и JF-17. Также в конце прошлого года ВВС Пакистана получили из Швеции первый из четырех заказанных самолетов ДРЛО SAAB 2ООО "Эриай" AEW&C. Второй подобный комплекс прибыл в апреле, а еще два ожидаются до конца года. К 2011 г. планируется поступление из КНР и первого из четырех заказанных самолетов ДРЛО ZDK-03, строящихся на платформе транспортного Y-8 (китайская версия советского Ан-12). Наконец, в июне этого года начались поставки из США 18 новых истребителей F-16C/D "Блок 52" по контракту 2007 г., которые пополнят парк из 40 F-16A/B, эксплуатируемых в Пакистане с 1983-1986 гг. и еще 18 машин, поставленных в 2005-2008 гг. (последние здесь пришлось ждать целых полтора десятилетия: вследствие вступивших в силу в 1990 г. санкций, на поставки 71 заказанного "Файтинг Фолкона", в т.ч. 28 уже оплаченных и построенных машин, было введено эмбарго, снятое только в 2004 г.). Еще одним новым типом боевого самолета в ВВС Пакистана в перспективе должен стать китайский истребитель FC-20 (модернизированный по требованиям Пакистана экспортный вариант J-10) - планируется закупить в КНР 36-40 таких машин в одноместном и двухместном вариантах.

As a result, by 2015, the Pakistani air forces will include 150 Sino-Pakistani fighters JF-17, 60 American F-16, up to 40 Chinese FC-20 and about fifty Chinese F-7PGs supported by DRLO SAAB XNUM HE aircraft in Africa. "and ZDK-2. as well as the Il-03 tanker aircraft and, possibly, the KS-78. At the same time, the outdated types of aircraft (F-135P, A-7 and Mirage) were planned to be completely withdrawn from service by that time.
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  1. svp67
    svp67 April 20 2013 08: 10 New
    Does it seem so to me, or in fact, that the First Pre-Production JF-17 (No. 07-101) shown in the photo is very different from all its other counterparts?
    1. APASUS
      APASUS April 20 2013 09: 04 New
      Quote: svp67
      Does it seem so to me, or in fact, that the First Pre-Production JF-17 (No. 07-101) shown in the photo is very different from all its other counterparts?

      If you look carefully, the planes have a clear difference in all the photos. Although I strongly doubt the reliability of such an aircraft Made in China - assembled in Pakistan !!
    2. xetai9977
      xetai9977 April 20 2013 09: 10 New
      It’s quite an efficient machine. And at an affordable price. Indeed, negotiations on the delivery of these aircraft were conducted to us, but in my opinion they ended in nothing. But what do we need fighters for? Our enemy doesn’t hurt a lot of planes. We need attack aircraft to work on the ground.
      1. Akim
        Akim April 20 2013 18: 58 New
        He can work on the land. He has an AFAR.
        1. Odysseus
          Odysseus April 20 2013 19: 30 New
          Quote: Akim
          He can work on the land. He has an AFAR.

          Do not confuse, it can work on the ground, but it has SCHAR. AFAR is in J-10B. And that, by the way, is not a fact that it is AFAR.
          1. Akim
            Akim April 20 2013 19: 49 New
            Quote: Odyssey
            maybe, but he has SHCHAR.AFAR at J-10B.

            As for whether it is crevice or not, I don’t know, but the Pakistanis say (in PM) that it allows the plane to work on the ground. I can give a link to a topic in their forum.
      2. StolzSS
        StolzSS April 21 2013 03: 14 New
        What enemies are you friends there ??? This is a mythical tale for the masses of the people. If Azerbaijan gets into a new war, it’s gone no matter how many fighters it has, and you need it when you can quietly equip your republic with export revenue and gradually establish local production. For example, I love pomegranate juice from your republic, and if the batch starts again a lot of people will eat and the devastation will be neither you nor even your so-called enemies need it, only the Turks are profitable and Western geyropa)))
        1. OTAKE
          OTAKE April 21 2013 05: 56 New
          Quote: StolzSS
          What enemies are you friends there ??? This is a mythical tale for the masses of the people.

          Посылаю вас на википедию, дружище! читать статью "Карабахский Конфликт".
          If Azerbaijan gets into a new war, it’s gone no matter how many fighters it has, and you need it when you can quietly equip your republic with export revenue and gradually establish local production.

          Is Armenia really going to tear apart unwanted Azerbaijan? What is interesting? Rocket models, inflatable tanks, or valiant soldiers defecating on their own parade ground?
          For example, I love pomegranate juice from your republic, and if the batch starts again a lot of people will eat and the devastation will be neither you nor even your so-called enemies need it, only the Turks are profitable and Western geyropa)))

          Do the Turks have no problems? What is the benefit? Why Geyropa? Is gay everything you know about the west? aren't they found anywhere else? Judging by what expressions you use, you don’t have any taste whatsoever - Europe
      3. hayabusa777
        hayabusa777 7 May 2013 12: 45 New
        jf-17 Soon in the sky above the Khankendi with our flag))
    3. Civil
      Civil April 20 2013 09: 19 New
      против продолжения поставок выступил глава РСК "МиГ" и компании "Сухой" Михаил Погосян

      China will sell any supplies ...
  2. svp67
    svp67 April 20 2013 09: 27 New
    JF-17 Thunder serial fighter from the 26 Squadron of the Pakistan Air Force

    It’s become very similar to F-5, why would it?
    1. Canep
      Canep April 20 2013 20: 52 New
      In addition to the layout, I do not notice any similarities.
    2. Argon
      Argon April 21 2013 03: 57 New
      Дружище не заговаривайтесь JF-17 с полным правом может носить имя "МиГ".
      1. Zerstorer
        Zerstorer April 21 2013 12: 08 New
        I also really like our MiGs. But in JF-17 there is nothing from them.
  3. OTAKE
    OTAKE April 20 2013 09: 51 New
    Appearance is very nice, IMHO, something from the F16th blows :)
    1. 123dv
      123dv April 20 2013 13: 28 New
      It is, only the air intake is not from below.
      In general, this is a typical essay on the topic.
      It’s quoted from there, it’s from here, its own - only the title and signature ...
  4. Bongo
    Bongo April 20 2013 10: 22 New
    Один из немногих современных,лёгких,однодвигательных истребителей. В этом классе сейчас "выступают" только F-16, Грипен и китайский J-10-являющийся развитием израильского "Лави"
    1. Avenger711
      Avenger711 April 20 2013 13: 44 New
      F-16 and J-10 are already a higher class.
    2. Akim
      Akim April 20 2013 19: 02 New
      There is also a Mirage 2000 and Tejas.
      1. Avenger711
        Avenger711 April 20 2013 22: 00 New
        Mirage 2000 is a class higher.
        1. Akim
          Akim April 20 2013 22: 12 New
          Quote: Avenger711
          Mirage 2000 is a class higher.

          Who said? The engine is more powerful. The bomb load due to the wing is greater, but they are the same in size. India specifically wanted to buy them to counter the Pakistani JiF-17.
  5. Roll
    Roll April 20 2013 13: 42 New
    am But in principle, an intelligent fighter, most importantly economical, can fill up an unmanned aerial vehicle, a helicopter, a bomber alone, and no more. For duels, a couple of ji 31 ​​will buy.
    1. Akim
      Akim April 20 2013 19: 05 New
      The Pakistanis themselves have an F-16A. He is not inferior to him, but in some ways superior.
  6. crasever
    crasever April 20 2013 16: 12 New
    Щелкнули по носу матрасникам китайские товарищи ...Нашлись ведь в военно-политическом руководстве Пакистана люди , здраво решившие , что дружить лучше с теми , кто реальные материальные ценности создает , как порт Гвадар , например , и не лезет при этом в душу с идеологическими установками вроде "общечеловеческих ценностей"...
  7. Odysseus
    Odysseus April 20 2013 19: 28 New
    In terms of price / quality ratio, a very good fighter. If the Chinese solve the problems with the engines, then it will enjoy wildly popular. The only thing with the load is sad, and the refueling system would not hurt.
    By the way, employees of the Mikoyan Design Bureau took an active part in the creation of the aircraft in the 90s.
    The plans for the rearmament of the Pakistan Air Force, given the country's financial capabilities, are also very reasonable and justified.
  8. Avenger711
    Avenger711 April 20 2013 20: 48 New
    The plane is beautiful, and beautiful planes fly beautifully too, although the absence of a full-fledged EMDS says a lot, the same Su-27 cannot be built without it, in principle, so it turns out that even the 4th generation of the Chinese as a whole have not yet learned how to do it.

    For our Air Force, the development of a similar machine could make sense, if the price is good, then we could very seriously increase the number. Although it would have been more real to develop a machine on a single engine from the Su-35, it would be slightly lighter and cheaper than the MiG-35 with the same capabilities and a higher angular roll speed (no separated masses of engines). Europe, as far as I understand, has nothing in this class of engines, Rafale and Typhoon are twin-engine.

    Насчет внешних рынков, то "Грипен" самолет тоже красивый, но дальше Европы у него не очень в отличие от легендарного F-5. Правда, последнию версию F-5 ака F-20 все-таки прикрыли, решив продавать средние F-16. Вообще мне кажется, что Китай реально не способен протолкнуть данную машину, по крайней мере, пока не поставит свой "шайтан". Нашим может и стоит подсуетиться в свободное от работы над Т-50 время. am
    1. Odysseus
      Odysseus April 20 2013 22: 13 New
      Quote: Avenger711
      The plane is beautiful, and beautiful planes fly beautifully too, although the absence of a full-fledged EMDS says a lot, the same Su-27 cannot be built without it, in principle, so it turns out that even the 4th generation of the Chinese as a whole have not yet learned how to do it.

      I agree with everything except this.
      J-10 The Chinese are doing it for themselves and there are no problems with EMDS.
      1. Avenger711
        Avenger711 April 20 2013 23: 31 New
        And in FC-1 they suddenly failed. An interesting movie, although it would be VERY worth saving on it.
        1. Odysseus
          Odysseus April 21 2013 00: 39 New
          Quote: Avenger711
          And in FC-1 they suddenly failed

          HZ, perhaps because FC-1 was originally made as an economy fighter for export there and it was not intended to put an emf.
          The fact is that there is an EMF on the J-10, but not on the FC-1. But I don’t know how to explain it.
    2. Akim
      Akim April 20 2013 22: 17 New
      Quote: Avenger711
      The plane is beautiful, and beautiful planes fly beautifully too

      Isn't it beautiful?
  9. T-130
    T-130 April 20 2013 22: 39 New
    It’s interesting, but their electronics don’t quack like radars in Ecuador?
  10. asbaev
    asbaev April 20 2013 23: 14 New
    And why does an airplane have two strips of discharged air constantly, is this not a design refinement or should it be so?
    1. Argon
      Argon April 21 2013 04: 10 New
      There is no refinement, this is the result of the machine walking at maximum angles of attack, which is not very good since it does not carry loads, the radii of the figures are quite large. In general, there is no need to talk about the over-maneuverability of this machine.
    2. vladimirZ
      vladimirZ April 21 2013 18: 00 New
      This is a stall of air flow at critical angles of attack of the wing.
  11. Arct
    Arct April 21 2013 15: 15 New
    У матрасников уже был F-5, который так и не стал пользоваться "бешенной" популярностью. Не вижу причин, по которым у данного истребителя получится занять нишу 21го. Есть одно большое "НО". Ни матрасники, ни китайцы и паки не готовы отдавать данные машинки в долг с перспективой невозврата, как было со многими 21ми.
  12. Black Colonel
    Black Colonel April 22 2013 14: 19 New
    Лёгкий истребитель необходимо иметь на вооружении хотя бы из соображений стоимости одного часа полёта ЛА. Одно дело, когда нужно перехватить цель на дальних подступах с возможной "собачьей свалкой" и ещё какими-либо нежданчиками, другое дело, если цель - вертолёт, БПЛА, КР. Опять же спрос у малобюджетных государств постоянен - постоянный рынок сбыта и сфера влияния в регионе покупателя.
  13. Huseyn
    Huseyn April 23 2013 00: 29 New
    Quote: Avenger711
    the lack of a full-fledged EMDS says a lot, the same Su-27 cannot be built without it in principle, so it turns out that even the 4th generation of the Chinese as a whole have not yet learned to do it.
    If you carefully read the characteristics of Russian 4th-generation aircraft, stop writing like that.
    MiG-29 - a 4th generation fighter does not have an EMF at all. MiGs have EMDS development, the Russian Air Force has no such machines, only experimental ones, including those with ATS.
    The Su-27 is a 4th generation fighter, has an analogue and analogous EMDS of this Sino-Pakistani fighter. The development of the latter have a digital EMDS with full responsibility and are in service with the Russian Air Force.
  14. lekalpan
    lekalpan 29 March 2019 22: 14 New
    Frankenstein airplane. Tail from F-16 wing MiG-21 mixture with F-16 air intake from Mirage nose + profile from MiG-21.