China defense industry faces homemade engine troubles

Discussion in 'China' started by ganesh177, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. ganesh177

    ganesh177 Regular Member

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    China defense industry faces homemade engine troubles


    SINGAPORE -- China can send a man into space and a rocket into lunar orbit but, paradoxically, its defense industry cannot build a top-end aircraft engine. Or an engine sophisticated enough to power advanced surface ships and armored vehicles.

    But this broad statement requires a caveat: China's defense industry can indeed design, develop and produce propulsion systems for relatively simple military platforms — certain transport aircraft, patrol boats, some types of main battle tanks and armored personnel carriers. But high-performance combat aircraft, destroyers and similarly demanding platforms are another matter.

    Only submarines appear an exception to this general rule. Most new types are fitted with locally developed propulsion systems, although the technology's origins are not known.

    This technical shortcoming was most recently highlighted in a report in the Russian newspaper Vedomosti stating that Beijing last month bought 123 AL-31FN turbofan engines from Russian manufacturer NPO Saturn. These cost over US$500 million. The order follows earlier tranches that since 2001 have totaled 930 engines.

    The AL-31FN currently powers China's J-10 multirole fighter and J-11A/B air superiority fighter, as well as the J-15 carrier-based fighter which is under development. Russia's Klimov RD-93 engine is fitted on the Chinese JF-17 multirole fighter and FC-1 attack fighter. A French engine drives the Z-11 helicopter and an American one powers the civilian ARJ-21 jet airliner.

    Indicative of this trend elsewhere in the People's Liberation Army, the navy's Song-class submarine has MTU diesel engines from Germany, while the Luhai-class destroyer has Ukrainian gas turbines and German diesels. Among ground forces, the ZBL-09 8x8 infantry combat vehicle is fitted with a Deutz engine from Germany and the Type 99 main battle tank has a locally produced power plant derived from German technology.

    Just a handful of companies worldwide have truly mastered the engineering challenge of developing high-performance engines, and China's dependence on foreign suppliers is deeply problematic for Beijing. But a new report concludes that change may be imminent.

    Gabe Collins and associate professor Andrew Erickson, in a comprehensive study published recently by specialist website China SignPost, focus on military jet power plants.

    “The Chinese aerospace industry is driven by four strategic imperatives as it pursues the ability to manufacture large volumes of high-performance aircraft engines — parts dependence avoidance, Russian supply unwillingness, aircraft sales autonomy and poor Russian after-sales service,” the authors state.

    They say that quality control remains spotty, resulting in problems with reliability, and key weak points include turbine blade production and process standardization. Beyond these issues, “(China) appears to remain limited with respect to components and systems design, integration and management ... and to making logistical and operational plans at the force level based on reliable estimates thereof.”


    Progress is uneven but, the authors add, China's dominant aerospace conglomerate — the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), with 10 subsidiaries and 400,000 employees — has now placed a high priority on engine development and plans over the next five years to invest 10 billion yuan (US$1.5 billion) in jet engine research and development.

    This is particularly significant because Russia looks to be an increasingly reluctant supplier, partly because of production pressures due to heightened domestic requirements, but also because of China's rising international sales competitiveness. Such reticence could seriously impede Beijing's push to upgrade its air force with J-10, J-11, J-15 and J-20 fighters — the last of these a fifth-generation fighter under development, with Moscow seemingly hesitant to provide the 117S engine it needs for sufficient power.

    “We estimate that, based on current knowledge and assuming no major setbacks or loss of mission focus, China will need two to three years before it achieves comprehensive capabilities commensurate with the aggregate inputs in the jet engine sector and five to 10 years before it is able to consistently mass produce top-notch turbofan engines for a fifth-generation type fighter,” said the study.

    “If China's engine-makers can attain the technical capability level that United States manufacturers had 20 years ago, it will be able to power its fourth-generation and fifth-generation aircraft with domestically made engines. These developments would be vital in cementing China as a formidable regional air power and deserve close attention from policymakers.”

    Collins and Erickson characterize China's inability to domestically mass produce advanced jet engines of consistent quality as an enduring Achilles' heel in its military aerospace sector. And there are important strategic and commercial implications inherent in overcoming this problem.

    Presumably, if more priorities arise, doing so through AVIC's new initiative may also provide lessons that could be applied to ground and naval platforms.

    China defense industry faces homemade engine troubles - The China Post
     
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  3. tony4562

    tony4562 Tihar Jail Banned

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    This is just another case of sensational reporting. AL-31FN only powers J10, both J11B and J15 are powered by WS10A. Early versions of J11 don't use AL-31FN either, they use the basic model AL-31F. AL-31FN is designed specifically to power single-engine aircraft.
     
  4. redragon

    redragon Regular Member

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    Does not matter for 2 reasons
    1. No members other than chinese ones would believe what you said, no matter you have supporting evidences or not.
    2. Nothing can stop China to close the gap with USA, does not matter what medias have to say.
     
  5. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    Close the gap for fourth generation planes first. USA is working on 6th gen planes.
     
  6. niceguy2011

    niceguy2011 Tihar Jail Banned

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    American should make their F22 fly first.
    leave 6 gen. to India.
     
  7. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    Tony reality is a [email protected] ain't it? China has ordered 930 AL-31 engines from Russia, that clearly shows which engines they are using for their aircraft, i dont see any room for WS10 engines in this order. So for they have built 120 J-11s and 190 J-10s which shows what engine they are running in. There is absolutely no proof that China is using its own engine and the last Chinese blogger who got tired of getting humiliated on the net went and took pictures of it and he was promptly thrown in jail and his computer taken away from him. Such times is what probably makes you grateful you live in an democracy and scrape your living there and support your autocratic state.
     
  8. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    F-22 has finished flying now and its taking swimming lessons.

    China will build 7th gen plastic plain with Russian engines, soon after Russia teaches it how.

    :p
     
  9. niceguy2011

    niceguy2011 Tihar Jail Banned

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    no room for ws10?
    do u know how may engines will need in a airplane's life time?
     
  10. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    WS-10 has not been able to be developed for the last 30 years now the number has moved upto ws-15.
     
  11. niceguy2011

    niceguy2011 Tihar Jail Banned

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    Thank you for your conclution. U must be one of PLAF generals. LOL.
     
  12. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    No just the tidbits of propaganda that are leaked out of China.

    http://www.china-defense-mashup.com...rashed-in-august-its-pilot-awarded-merit.html

    One Chinese J-10 Fighter Crashed in August, its Pilot awarded merit


    http://china-defense.blogspot.com/2010/04/another-j10-crashed.html

    Another J-10 crashed.

    http://www.hkhkhk.com/engpro/messages/2885.html

    Chinese official website confirms death of PLA pilot in J10 crash
     
  13. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    If your WS-10 was working perfectly then why order 125 more engines from Russia, makes no sense what so ever. Aircraft engines dont require changing until the vendor specified life time is over, that mostly lasts for 25 years. This is not to mention some engines wont be changed due to mishap, generally overhual is good enough.

    Also good your supporting China, because i dont want to see you end up in Jail if you criticize it! :D
     
    LETHALFORCE likes this.
  14. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    Chinese Fifth Generation Fighter Have 117S Or WS-15 Engine? Still Unknown ~ ASIAN DEFENCE NEWS

    Chinese Fifth Generation Fighter Have 117S Or WS-15 Engine? Still unknown

    The R & D projects in China-made engine has some defects, the engine can not be widely used in military aircraft. As we all know, the Chinese improved strategic bombers H -6 equiped with the Russian-made D-30KP engine, JF-17 fighter with the RD-93 engine, J -10 with the AL-31FN engine, J-11 with AL -31F engines.

    According to the Russian Military industry News site on December 29 News reported that China's aviation enthusiasts, the 5th generation fighter first clear picture of the most amazing Christmas gifts. J -20 J -14 or code, or J-XX aircraft was taxiing at high speed, "passers, " found that after taking to the web. Perhaps this is to demonstrate transparency, perhaps the country's military strength increasingly strong and proud of China's industrial spun leakage. In short, the new aircraft's engines roar in the Tiger, and now the remaining question is what kind of new aircraft in the end with the engine.


    World experts generally believe that China-made engine R & D projects has some drawbacks, not widely used in military aircraft. As we all know, the Chinese strategic bombers H -6 improved engine assembly of the Russian-made D-30KP, JF-17 fighter using the RD-93 engines, J -10 with the AL-31FN engine, use the AL J -11 -31F engines. In short, the engine of China in Russia there is heavy reliance on imports, this trend is likely will continue. According to Russian media and the United Kingdom, "Jane's Defense Weekly " unconfirmed information, Russia has for the Chinese J–14 provides its own prototype of the 117S engine the latest (5th generation Russian fighter T-50 also uses this type of engine) But the news has been questioned. However, on the other hand, the Chinese-made WS-15 engine with the same look less credible, because this engine is not perfect, can not be used to verify the assembly of new machines. In short, China's 5th generation fighter in the end use of the type of engine, is still unknown.
     
  15. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    [​IMG]

    all of these different engines, none made it to become a plane engine.
     
  16. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    best of luck with that, hope you will close the gap and take Pakistan, Nk and Iran with you.

    Back to topic, what is the current stage of engine development in China, any pics of the testing facilities and engine would be great.
     
  17. niceguy2011

    niceguy2011 Tihar Jail Banned

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    U must know how many MIG-21 crashed India. (and how many u bought)
     
  18. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    China Defense Blog: Switcharoo: Multiple Engine Types for China's J-20 Stealth Fighter?

    Switcharoo: Multiple Engine Types for China's J-20 Stealth Fighter?

    Our intrepid forum members have noticed there appear to be two different sets of engines powering China's J-20 stealth fighter as it undergoes testing at Chengdu.

    Judging by the nozzle petals, one engine set seems to be the Russian AL-31F, possibly the 117S upgrade variant. The AL-31F powers some Chinese J-10 and J-11 fighters, while the 117S variant powers the Russian Su-35 and is the interim powerplant for the T-50 PAK-FA. The 117S was approved for export by the Russians a few years ago and some sources indicate China has at least negotiated for them if not obtained some.

    The other petal set looks like the indigenous WS-10A engine. The WS-10A powers new-build J-11B fighters coming off the assembly line at Shenyang, and is reportedly in use on the first J-10B aircraft. There are other variants of WS-10 reportedly in development.


    China's AVIC I aircraft industry announced in 2009 it was developing the WS-15 engine for use in China's next generation fighter. Some components for the engine are known to have completed development, but there have yet been no indications of a complete operational WS-15 engine. It seems unlikely the J-20 would undergo initial testing with an unproven WS-15 engine.


    The latest J-20 photos show a prototype equipped with what appear to be WS-10A engines. If standard AL-31F engines were used initially, it would have likely been as a risk reduction measure. However, WS-10A engines are also a known quantity and in service with the PLAAF so it seems unlikely for J-20 to undergo test with the standard AL-31F now.

    There are some tantalizing rumors about more than one prototype and previous secret J-20 flight testing that provide possible answers, but I'll leave these on China-Defense.com forum.

    Chinese are using 4th gen engines and passing the plane of as a fifth gen plane. Typical communist propaganda.
     
    maomao likes this.
  19. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    what does that have to do with a chinese engine that was ready for export??
     
  20. tony4562

    tony4562 Tihar Jail Banned

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    All recent pictures of J11B show the aircraft is powered by WS10A, it 's a fact even acknowledged by jane's.

    BTW, the conflict between China and India has little to do with China being an 'autocratic' state. It is a conflict between nation's interests, it has mostly to do with race, culture, shortage of resources, as well as India's obsession with everything chinese or east asian rather.

    I don't support the chinese government, I support the great east asian race. I also believe that Indians are potential competitors to us east asians.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2011
  21. tony4562

    tony4562 Tihar Jail Banned

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    Take a look at this page. There is a picture of the description sign for WS10 when it was displayed along side AL31FN. The sign says: FWS10 (Ws10A) is China indigenously developed advanced turbofan engine, currently installed on J11. With modification it can also be installed on J10. Right now it is being mass producued.

    This is from official source. It just shows that WS10 is now in serial production powering J11B, but it has yet to power J10.
     

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