The reporter has learnt from Russian Zhukovsky Central Aerodynamic Research Institute that at present, a tunnel test for the model of the J-17 bomber will soon be completed.
China has already had the experience of developing and manufacturing the J-11B and J-16 fighters (respectively copies of Russian Su-27 and Su-30).
Aviation experts believe, the J-17, the Chinese version of the Su-34, can be used to replace some of and strengthen the H-6 bombers.
Photographs obtained by spy satellites show that recently there has been significant reduction of the number of H-6 bombers at Chinese airfields, which perhaps indicates the decommissioning and destruction of the H-6 bombers made earlier.
Meanwhile, it also proves that there is limited room for improvement in those aircraft. The first flight of China’s H-6 bomber was carried out in 1953.
Experts point out that development and manufacture of the new type of heavy bomber are very difficult jobs.
For China’s aircraft industry, the complicated problem is the unavailability of a China-made powerful turbojet engine.
We cannot exclude the possibility that China began to develop its J-17 tactical bomber in 1998, as China played the footage of the model of an aircraft similar to the Su-34 at Airshow China that year.
Experts estimate the combat load of the Chinese vision of the Su-34 may reach 8 tons. If that is the case, J-17’s maximum load is a little lighter than the H-6 bomber (9 tons). It in theory may carry long-range cruise missiles.
Russia is also interested in selling an export version of it’s S-34 aircraft to China. A Chinese source believes that commissioning of the Su-34 and J-17 can greatly enhance the Chinese air force attack potential, and improve it to make it satisfy world advanced standards.
Previously, there was a report that China, in addition, was developing the J-19 heavy bomber on the basis of the J-11B.Source: mil.huanqiu.com “Wind tunnel test of Chinese version of Su-34 bomber is said to finish soon, the aircraft can carry a load of 8 tons”
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