Chinese J-20 Stealth Jet Spawns 2-seater Option, Indigenous Engine on 10th Anniversary

  • Our Bureau
  • 10:57 AM, January 12, 2021
  • 1623
Chinese J-20 Stealth Jet Spawns 2-seater Option, Indigenous Engine on 10th Anniversary
J-20 fighter jet nicknamed "Black Ribbon"

Chinese J-20 stealth fighter jet has revealed a twin-seater variant besides indigenous WS-10 engines to replace its Russian-origin power plant on its tenth anniversary that fell on January 11.

The twin-seat variation of the J-20 could be used for electronic warfare, command of wingman drones or bombing, analysts were quoted as saying by Chinese media.

State-owned Aviation Industry Corp of China (AVIC) released a computer-generated video showing four twin-seat J-20s flying in formation last Friday, the first official depiction of this variant. The video did not elaborate on the twin-seat J-20 or its designed functions.

Chinese J-20 Stealth Jet Spawns 2-seater Option, Indigenous Engine on 10th Anniversary

Once developed, it will make the aircraft the world's first twin-seat stealth jet.

By adding another seat to the cockpit, the aircraft could, in exchange for some level of stealth capability and maneuverability, carry a second pilot designated for more complicated tasks such as electronic warfare, command of wingman drones or tactical bombing, a Chinese military analyst was quoted as saying by Global Times.

Read: After Copying F-35's Stealth, China's J-20 Duplicating its Non-Stealth Features

Chinese media predicted the twin-seat J-20 could spawn more variations that are equipped with devices corresponding to these tasks.

Chinese J-20 Stealth Jet Spawns 2-seater Option, Indigenous Engine on 10th Anniversary
AL-31F engine

Additionally, the Chinese media citing a video by People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force reported that the Russian AL-31FM2/3 engines engines powering the J-20 are replaced by high-performance, high-thrust turbofan WS-10C engines. These new engines enable mass production of the aircraft without the limitation of imported engines.

The WS-10C engines will eventually use more powerful WS-15s which many observers believe is inspired or reverse-engineered from the Russian AL-31 engine that goes into the Su-35 fighter jet.

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