First Ever On-The-Ground Appearance Of China's J-20 Fifth-Gen Stealth Fighter Reveals Potential Development Issues

by Swarajya Staff - Nov 15, 2022 01:10 PM +05:30 IST
First Ever On-The-Ground Appearance Of China's J-20 Fifth-Gen Stealth Fighter Reveals Potential Development IssuesChina's J-20 Fighter Jet (Pic Via Nikkei Asia)

The first-ever on-the-ground appearance of the Chinese Chengdu J-20 fighter jet has revealed potential development issues in the fifth-gen aircraft.

The J-20 fighter jet made its first-ever on-the-ground appearance after a demonstration flight at an air show in China.

The aircraft had earlier been shown in demonstration flights a few times before. However, the appearance on the apron at the China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai was its public debut on the ground, reports Nikkei Asia.

During the demonstration flight, as many as four J-20s flew in formation, vertically ascended, flew in a circle and completed a vertical loop, then repeated the maneuvers.

The demonstration flight above the venue lasted about 13 minutes.

The fighter, which was first recognized in flight in 2011 with its deployment coming by 2017, is believed to be capable of launching long-range cruise missiles. 

However, experts have said that the fighter jet's design reveals potential development issues.

"The J-20 has many wings, its canards are for better flight performance. On the other hand, its design sacrifices some of its stealth function," Bonji Ohara, senior fellow at the Sasakawa Peace Foundation, was quoted in the Nikkei Asia report as saying.

"The reason it had to sacrifice stealthiness is that they didn't achieve sufficient flight performance without the canards," he added.

"It appears to me they are having difficulty achieving stability in flying straight and maneuverability," Ohara said, referring to two small fins visible underneath the slanted tail units.

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