A top Chinese researcher has revealed details of the active electronically scanning array (AESA) phase array radar meant for the JF-17 fighter jet being manufactured in Pakistan under a Pakistani-Chinese partnership.
The radar is a part of the Block III upgrade of the JF-17 whose design has been concluded and will likely enter serial production in the 2020-22 timeframe.
Hu Mingchun, head of China’s leading radar manufacturer, the Nanjing Research Institute of Electronics Technology in Jiangsu province said that the KLJ-7A active phased array radar will give the JF-17 many advantages in an aerial combat.
"Our product will tremendously extend the fighter jet's detection range, giving it a much longer sight that will help it detect the enemy's aircraft before they do, and this is very important because in real combat if you see first, you fire first," he said. "The radar is capable of tracking dozens of targets and engaging several of them simultaneously. It also has a good jamming-resistant capacity that keeps the plane away from enemy's electronic interference." China Daily quoted him as saying.
The KLJ-7A radar can be mounted on light-or medium-weight fighter jets. It is one of the best of its kind in the world in terms of technology and capability, Hu said.
Nanjing Research Institute of Electronics Technology, part of the State-owned defense giant China Electronics Technology Group Corp, is China’s leading developer of military radars. Its products have been exported to more than 20 nations in Africa and Asia.
The JF-17, known as the FC-1 in China, is a lightweight, multirole fighter jet co-developed by Aviation Industry Corp of China and Pakistan Aeronautical Complex.
The plane is currently the most widely deployed fighter jet in the Pakistan Air Force. The Block III upgrade, which includes an AESA radar in additions to several electronics and targeting system is said bring the aircraft up to the standards of the latest version of the Lockheed Martin F-16 and the Saab Gripen NG.
The research institute has been promoting a series of new-generation radars such as the YLC-8B, SLC-7 and SLC-12, integrate the traditional detection method of mechanical scanning with two-dimensional active phased array technology, so they are able to handle not only stealth fighter jets but also unmanned aircraft, and even cruise or ballistic missiles.