Modern fighters without Russia? China begins to produce engines

WARSAW, (BM) – The Chinese company Aviation Power, owned by the Aero Engine Corporation of China (AVIC), has announced that it has completed a new production line for third-generation “medium traction” jet engines, learned citing Defence24. The Chinese media write in detail on the issue. This line probably will produce propulsion systems for the announced new fighters.

Some experts speculated that this is the production line of WS-13 engines supposed to power the JF-17 Thunder light fighters made in Pakistan and the new 5th generation medium twin-engine fighters – Shanyang J-31 Gǔ yīng [white fish].

The line had not only to be completed but also to pass all approvals and inspections. All this means that serial production of the new devices has already begun. This information indicates that the Chinese have probably overcome the technological barrier when building useful quality devices. Overcoming this stage may mean the beginning of serial production of these aircraft.

This may be related to reports of the expected end of production of the 4th generation J-10C. The successors to the J-31 are considered mass-produced medium-sized multi-role aircraft. Some sources assumed that they would be future aircraft for Chinese carriers.

Production of W-13 is also bad news for the Russians, whose Klimov RD-93 engines (the version of the propulsion used in the MiG-29) had installed in the Pakistani JF-17. Now they can have a Chinese and possibly a cheaper substitute.

The Guizhou WS-13 turbofan engines were developed from 2000, certified until 2007, and began series production in 2009. However, like other high-performance Chinese jet engines, this drive had problems due to some low quality moving engine parts. As a result, they wear out faster than imported Russian engines.

The new production line could mean that production of these fully developed drives is about to begin, and so far, the entire J-31 program awaits them. The declared thrust of WS-13 is 54-56 kN and 90 kN with afterburning. This performance is similar to the successful European twin engines Eurofighter Typhoon, Eurojet EJ200.

Is China ending the production of key fighter jets?

More than 30 Chengdu J-10 Měnglóng [agile dragon] combat aircraft of the latest C version standing on the parking areas of Chengdu Aerospace Corporation [CAC] plants, as we reported earlier this week.

This quantity is more than the usual twelve that usually waited for collection by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army air force, reports portal, whose representatives had the opportunity to visit these factories.

According to the Dutch portal, this could mean that China stopped the production of J-10C last year. According to this theory, the manufacturer would probably complete only machines at an advanced stage of production. Now, all of them are pending a decision as to their fate.

The portal indicates that at the same time, the production of another combat aircraft – J-20 Wēilóng [mighty dragon] is developing at the CAC plant. However, it is a 5th generation machine and heavy and twin-engine, unlike the J-10C, a medium-sized, single-engine fighter.


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