Spotted: China’s Chengdu J-20 Stealth Fighter?

Aviation Week is reporting that Chinese aviation enthusiasts have spotted a mysterious jet fighter at Chengdu Airport, China. It’s believed that the plane might be the infamous J-20 – the first Chinese stealth fighter, built by Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation (CAC).
Judging from the pictures you can’t deny big similarities to an F-22 and the Sukhoi T-50 PAK FA. It seems to be much larger than an F-22 though.

Chengdu J-20 Chinese Stealth Fighter
More photos:

The Chengdu J-20 was first disclosed by US Office of Naval Intellegence (ONI) in 1997 as XXJ, J-20 (?) and is a 5th generation fighter to enter service around 2015. The jet is believed to be a twin-engine multi-role heavy fighter with enhanced stealth capability and maneuverability comparable to American F-22. It was speculated that 601 Institute was working on a “tri-plane” design based on canard/conventional layout/V-shape tailfin while 611 Institute working on a design based on canard/tailless delta wing/all moving V-shape tailfin/side DSI/bump inlet layout. All designs were expected to feature an internal weapon bay to reduce its radar footprint. The overall performance of J-20 is thought to be superior to Russian T-50 but still inferior to Amereican F-22. In August 2008 it was reported that 611 Institute was selected to be the main contractor for the development of J-20 and 601 Institute as the sub-contractor. One rumor in May 2010 suggested that 611 Institute started to construct the first prototype, which is expected to fly by 2012. The latest rumor claimed that the first two prototypes have been constructed and the first high-speed taxiing trial took place on December 22, 2010.


4 thoughts on “Spotted: China’s Chengdu J-20 Stealth Fighter?”

  1. The first impression that I got, just from the size of this beast, that it is more akin to the stretched “regional bomber” FB-22 and FB-23 proposals in role than strictly a Raptor counterpart. Which is not to say that an air-to-air role would not important; low-observability, long range, and supercruise, mated to a standoff missile like a YJ-91/Kh-31 AAM derivative could put US and Japanese AWACS, tankers, Rivet Joints, and EP-3s in danger.

  2. the chinese “copycats” managed to fabricate kinda stealthISH airframe shell…
    i doubt that i can perform upto the real definition of the word STEALTH.
    for over 20 years USA stealthy stuff have been shown to the public world wide so no big deal
    to COPY a raw design by the chinese.they just had to visit some airshows or even air museums photograph from top to botton the exhibited original and/or make some specific technical notes and drawings BUT without the proper stealth know-how INSIDE of the stealth fighter it means nothing
    in value for military it like this:you copy the most extravagant military riffle on the market today but you don’t have the proper know-how what kind of ammo it will and can use.
    harmless show off performance by the chinese but not as in “strategic air weapons show” :))

  3. The US has this, the US has that, blah blah blah.

    What good does it bring them when they cant even pop off a physically challenged hillybilly since 2001?

    Gimme a break!