Print 64 comment(s) - last by mindless1.. on Apr 28 at 2:23 PM

Maiden flight was in January

The military aviation world is abuzz about stealth technology today. America’s F-35 and the F-22 make use of liberal doses of stealth technology in their designs. The U.S., however, isn’t the only country working hard on stealth aircraft.

The newest stealth fighter to make headlines is the Chinese J-20 fighter. Reuters reports that photos of the J-20 making another flight have surfaced. The photos show the J-20 on the ground and then taking off for only its second flight. 

The photos of the J-20's second flight were posted on the People's Daily website in China with the caption reading, "an alleged J-20 prototype prepares to take off." The Chinese Defense Ministry didn’t comment, but the People's Daily is widely known as a mouthpiece for the Chinese government.

The J-20 had its maiden flight in January 2011. That maiden flight came well ahead of what many analysts expected. The J-20 is reportedly a larger aircraft than the F-22 Raptor leading some to believe it is more focused on air and ground attack roles than air superiority like its U.S. rival. The photos have led some analysts to think that China may be further ahead in the development of the aircraft than initially thought.

There was speculation that the J-20 stealth technology may be have been acquired by the Chinese from an American F-117 that crashed in 1999. That F-117 was lost in Serbia and was the first of the aircraft to get hit by enemy fire. There were reports that Chinese agents were moving all around the part of Serbia where the F-117 crashed buying up parts of the aircraft from local farmers.

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RE: Bought and paid for by US consumers...
By mindless1 on 4/20/2011 8:47:48 PM , Rating: 2
Quickly? What makes you think they haven't been working on jet fighter tech for dozens of years?

I don't understand why people are discussing whether they got some stealth tech from a downed US plane. Where do our jet fighter engineers come from? Universities world wide.

Do these universities ban Chinese students? If not, are we assuming the chinese students deliberately try not to learn the sciences applicable to stealth tech, or are we assuming 100% of them never go back to China?

We're near the end of the era where there is any tech that one country holds for years that the others do not if they have sufficient resources which the Chinese do.

One might argue they have a smaller budget for such things, but the dirt cheap Chinese products we buy every other day are proof enough they can stretch a budget and do things very inexpensively.

RE: Bought and paid for by US consumers...
By Azethoth on 4/22/2011 3:02:57 AM , Rating: 2
Nah the quickness is because they design, engineer and assemble it all in one location from parts built locally. It turns out that it is fast and cheap to do things that way. You know, like what the Skunk Works did in WWII.

Now in America though you need to build in political hardening from top to bottom so you end up with bits and pieces from enough states to form a presidential veto proof electoral supermajority. Unfortunately this makes things 35x as expensive and very slow to roll out.

By mindless1 on 4/28/2011 2:23:47 PM , Rating: 2
That would account for a difference of weeks, months at most, not years. The differences were the US both saw a need and invested in the research earlier, as the US thinks it is an international police force for both better and worse.

China doesn't feel this burden nor fear attack from surrounding countries.

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