Fulcrum - 1 | Chinese Copies - 0

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by fulcrum, Feb 12, 2010.

  1. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    On 23rd December a significant event took place which sadly went under reported. When inane drivel was making to the news, the event which established the superiority of a fighter over another went largely unnoticed. It was on that very day the Myanmar Air force(Tatmadaw Lei) chose the Mig-29M/M2 Fulcrum over the much hyped China's J-10, and it's smaller cousin which was rejected by China itself- the JF-17.

    This competition was like no other.
    On one hand the fulcrum was facing setbacks everywhere. First it was in Malaysia where due to endemic corruption and the interference of Middle men, the spares for the Mig-29s were ridiculously over priced by the time it reached the end user. This prompted Malaysia to retire it's Mig-29s prematurely. The second setback was on the Algerian front, where another corruption involving Russian middle men lead to sourcing inferior parts for upgrading the Mig-29s. This lead Algeria to cancel the order and return some, which left the Russians in deep soul searching. Just recently the middle men were arrested and criminal cases initiated against them. There were also wild rumors of Myanmar's Mig-29s being grounded due to poor after sales service(which got proved wrong).
    The Chinese fighters on the other hand had no such setbacks. In addition to the fact that Myanmar is in China's backyard, the Chinese fighters, especially the J-10 was marketed as "ultra modern" and was even offered highly advantageous price and payment conditions.

    However the results of that tender was dramatic.

    The J-10 is a product of Widespeard assistance by the western powers during the years of the Cold war. During the cold war, the U.S encouraged Israel to help the chinese boost their capabilities against what they considered as the "Evil Empire" which was giving the whole western world quite a challenge. China and the Soviet Union were at each other throats after the soviets refused to bow down to china's demands to return "their" land. After many bloody skirmish, where the chinese suffered enormous causalities on the hands of the vastly superior Red Army, there was much bad blood between them. The western powers capitalised on this and began to rub shoulders with the chinese. The Chinese too sold them J-7s to be used on the U.S DACT training simulating soviet fighters. In the mist of this Honey moon, Israel starting sharing their technology with the blessings of Washington. And on top of that list(and a prime candidate since that project was stopped and was not in active service), was the Israeli Lavi.

    Israeli Lavi Protoype:
    [​IMG]

    J-10 Production Model:
    [​IMG]

    However before Israel can offer full assistance, the Tienanmen massacre led to an abrupt halt to the help. However the chinese still retained all the blueprints and maybe even a Lavi mockup. It was only natural for the chinese Aerospace having done nothing but copying and reverse engineering fighters for the past 4 decades, to continue reverse engineering the Lavi. The cold war ended and China found itself partnering with it's former enemy to ask for help. The Russian engineers who came out in the open reported several blueprints of Lavi in Hebrew!!! Russians who were cash strapped at this point agreed to help and also offered their engine. After a lot of reverse engineering and a few prototype crashes, J-10 finally flew. The chinese fan boys were instantly captivated by the "beautiful" Israeli fighter and began over hyping it's performance. The fighter was so secretive that only recently did china accept it's existence. The first battle for this fighter was against the JF-17 which was a cheap project built on the Super-7(Super J-7) project. The J-10 clearly came out winning on the specs, which lead the PLAAF putting all it's money on J-10 and ditching the JF-17, which at this point was referred as JunkFighter-17 by the aviation community. After the triumphant domestic win, J-10's first real competition outside its motherland was in its neighbourhood, Myanmar. There it was pitted against the Mig-29, Soviet Union's first Fourth Generation fighter.

    Inspite of the other advantages heaped on the chinese fighters, the result is that only the superior fighter wins.
    J-10 with it's single engine was more risky compared to the twin engined Mig-29. It losses out on Thrust to Weight ratio to the Mig-29. It's G-limits are unknown, as is its range, while Mig-29Ms data is well known. It shares 95% commonality with Mig-29K(hence the Fulcrum-D designation) & can share or have a constant flow of spares & after sales support with the IN. It's stall performance and recovery is unknown, while Mig-29 is known for breath taking stall maneuvers in airshows... hence getting out of a stall for a Mig-29 is a piece of cake. It has 9 hardpoints which can be increased to 13 with multi locks, while J-10's said to be 11. It can carry 6.5 tonnes in weapon tonnage while J10's unknown. However some chinese fan boys claim 4.5 tonnes and some even 6 tonnes. In avionics, there is the clear Russian superiority over Chinese copies. Taking all these facts into consideration, it's no wonder that the Mig-29M fulcrum was chosen over a Chinese plane. Apart from the desperate and poor PAF, which has no reliable & cheap suppliers, it seems there is no one else who is willing to take this Chinese fighter.

    There is little doubt now that the J-10s has suffered a blow to its prestige with its first overseas defeat!


    Ref:
    http://migavia.ru/eng/military_e/MiG_29_M_M2_e.htm
    http://www.roe.ru/cataloque/air_craft/aircraft_20-24.pdf
    http://www.defensenews.com/story.php?i=4431181
    http://www.domain-b.com/defence/general/20091223_chinese_fighters.html
     
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  3. prahladh

    prahladh Respected Member

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    Inspite of the other advantages heaped on the chinese fighters, the result is that only the superior fighter wins.
    some good points here. Good post sir.
     
  4. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    Thanks.
    After all this time the chinese didn't even release the official specs of that plane. Makes you wonder on the true, perhaps inferior, capabilities of that fighter other than popularized by the fan boys. The link for the official specs of the Mig is the ref RAC-Mig Bureau's links above.
     
  5. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    PLaying the Devil's advocate.
    The Burmese are not really known for their stringent technical requirements. Perhaps

    1. Russians gave them the better deal
    2. Chinese wanted their hands on some Mig 29s through Myanmar
    3. They were more comfortable using an already inducted platform.
     
  6. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    Maybe before, but with recent near war situations with Bangladesh, this is not the case. They are also upgrading their navy, IIRC.

    Nah.. it was the chinese who were offering monetarily "favorable conditions" in their contract.

    They wouldn't have pitched in the J-10 in this case. It would be too embarrassing for them to intentionally make their front line Fighter lose face. They could have just offered the JF-17 in this case.

    This is a possibility. It means their Fulcrums had good service record with them, and they went for them inspite of the bad publicity it received recently in Malaysia and Algeria.
     
  7. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    i think there could be just another angle to it. just like the burmese are playing the chinese with indians in their backyard who are both ready to dole out candies for each yes the general says they might also be testing the waters with the russians and see how much could they pit russia against the chinese and extract some sort of a leverage in bargain, they are smart, that’s for sure.

    and if this is purely technical as is claimed, good going then.
     
  8. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Fulcrum, some good points there. I will come back later to this thread. In the meanwhile Bdesh is the 2nd largest customer of Chinese defence equipment. probably that was a factor as well ?
     
  9. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    I don't know if that is a factor, but you have to take into account, this is not Brazil or Madagascar we are talking about where external conflicts are unlikely. This is a country which almost went to war just recently with bangladesh not once but many times. The sticking point between those 2 are Arakan and billions and billions of dollars worth of Natural gas just lying off-shore. When a neighbourhood as on-the-edge as that, war is a very real possibility and the means to fight that war are real war machines. There is no way J-10 can match Mig-29 in case of both Raw power and avionics. If war is a very real possibility, I'd go on a buying spree to get the best equipment to my forces, that's what any General would do. Politics and all others takes a second place to War fighting capabilities in this Scenario.

    And even if the decision wasn't purely technical and other factors played a role, you can bet that the technical aspect was the KEY factor among the all other factors, to opt for the Fulcrums.

    Those Migs will come with state of the Art Zhuk-ME(same as our Mig-29k) with BVR missiles & AG munitions, almost on par with MKIs. Given the size of bangladesh, Sukhois range is unnecessary. Those Migs can cover the whole of Bangladesh with no problems. Also the standard plus point of Migs to operate from rough airfields near forward bases is another huge plus point for Myanmar since it would be a largely shore & border conflict lasting only a couple of days before the International community steps in to halt the war. Operating from rough airfields is something the sukhois & it's engines can't perform. And given the state of Chinese engines, I don't think J-10 can either.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  10. gogbot

    gogbot Regular Member

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    WELL what you say is technically true, you are underestimating the Chinese. And failing to see the underlying complexity behind the whole deal.

    -first of, whatever the origins of the J-10 may be we have to understand that the Chinese have the J-10 and the technical skills to design and build an aircraft of its nature. J-10 is still a single engine 4th generation fighter. Their Military Complex even if it was built on reverse engineering is very advanced, capable of dishing out a wide range of tech. Even reverse engineering requires a massive amount of skill, As of now China chas reverse engineered the Su-30, That is a very advanced air craft. we should realize the threat their capabilities pose

    -Second, Even though the Chinese have the J-10 they dont have an engine to use it with, they have to import Saturn engines from Russia, This give the Russians control over the J-10 and its exports, As they control the engines and its spares. Meaning it is always going to have a competitive disadvantage against Russian Products. This hurts the J-10 even more as by their nature any single engine plane is designed to be the economical alternative, to the Twin engine high performance aircraft. You cant compete with an economical model when your opponent controls the economics of your offer.

    -You dont realize how annoying the JF-17 is, even if it is less capable fighter it is still a contemporaneity economical fighter at 15 million a piece , its existence means that The PAF with its measly budget. Can now afford to not only phase out the vast array of 3rd and 2nd generation aircraft they have, with lets face it the more capable JF-17, But not only that they can also now afford to increase the number of planes they have. Otherwise they would have had to but a more expensive western plane and reduce their force levels. But the worst part is since the capabilities of the plane are largely supplemented by the RADAR and Missie's, As long as the dam Jf-17 has a decent set of those, They pose a very potent threat to our pilots.
    Overall the JF-17 has resulted in an increase in the overall capabilities of the PAF. Which i am sure you would agree is annoying.
     
  11. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    They are indeed advanced than Indian counterparts, but to bluntly say they are advanced gives the false impression that they are in the league of the big boys. I'm not underestimating anybody, just pointing out the facts. In any case, I'll stop "underestimating" them when they dish out something truly Chinese which is world class.

    Maybe for the JF-17, but they already had some of their engines up on the J-11s recently. By the time delivery starts to Myanmar, they would have put together a engine, by their rickety standards ofcourse. This would have been the reason why they pitched their fighter in.

    Annoying yes, but a game changer, clearly No. Infact, this could prove counter productive taking into account the morale of PAF pilots when they face IAF fighters with inferior Chinese avionics and missiles in them. Pilots are not chicken sent to the broiler. As for the French avionics, those french were charging exorbitant amounts for our Mirage upgrade, and even WE are looking for other sources like the Israelis. Pakistanis are too poor to afford french Radars and missiles.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  12. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Really? Lets examine those statements...

    The origins of the J-10 are the Lavi... proof is in the pictures.

    [​IMG]

    Chinese hardly have the technical skills to copy a plane they not only have the blue prints for, but the actual sample itself! J-10 had to be redesigned by the Russians after they screwed it up.

    They didn't reverse engineer the Su-30,they copied the Su-27SK. The Russians taught them everything except the engines/ avionics and they still have engineless planes. Most of what China has are rip-offs of licensced copies or asking Russia for help when they screw up.

    It won't always have a disadvantage, once the WS-10A is fixed they will be sticking it on future J-10s. Russia is helping the very ones who will steal their market share.

    If JF-17 had gotten the French upgrades I would agree, but France is refusing to sell them in order to appease India for MMRCA. As it stands now, JF-17 is a piece of junk flying the same Grifo radars the F-7Ps use. If I had to go into battle today with an F-7P or a JF-17, I would choose the F-7P. The MiG-21 frame is a proven combat aircraft. PLAAF doesn't even want the FC-1 it is so bad.
     
  13. gogbot

    gogbot Regular Member

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    to be Blunt

    Key point cHINA ahead of India, That is all that concerns me and that should be for you as well.

    Just wanted to make that clear


    The Chinese WS-10A can only be used on the J-11. Using it on a single engine platform has some challenges they have been unable to overcome. something to do with not being able to generate enough acceleration in the single engine set up.

    as of now China has placed fresh orders to the Russians for more engines for J-10 and JF-17.

    A varriant of the WS-10 can possibly be one day used for J-10, but i give more bets that the KAveri will fly on the Tejas before the WS-10 is ever fitted to the JF-17.

    The JF-17 is just a cheap plane and cheap way to build an aircrafce that actually works, The way i look at the JF-17 is the Tata nano of the air world.


    Not a game changer by any standard, Its PAk attempt to remain a Military power

    but i see American missiles and French radars. They pose a threat ot our pilots regardless, Had they not upgraded they would have 3rd gen obsolete planes,
    Overall it increases the number of planes they have, Increasing their foce levele

    They still have more Tech they our scientists when they started the LCA project, or the MCA project.

    with their larger technological base they have a significant advantage on their own projects of the same type

    Luckily for us no, The Chinese WS-10A can only be used on the J-11. Using it on a single engine platform has some challenges they have been unable to overcome. something to do with not being able to generate enough acceleration in the single engine set up.

    as of now China has placed fresh orders to the Russians for more engines for J-10 and JF-17.

    A varriant of the WS-10 can possibly be one day used for J-10, but i give more bets that the KAveri will fly on the Tejas before the WS-10 is ever fitted to the JF-17.



    That's the funny part if they got French systems the the price of the plane would double, making it truly the Junk fighter -17 because at that price the plane's economical 4th generation no longer stands up against other more capable and similarly priced planes
     
  14. Agantrope

    Agantrope Senior Member Senior Member

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    I really doubt he reverse engineer work everywhere else, when REing the product it is utter stupid is what i feel. It is ok to RE the product which comes with the blue print. Unless or until the product cant be accepted as coparable to the original ones. Thats the reason why russians havent provided the engine secrets to the chinese, ven avionics chinese are advanced since they are handling the LAVI aka J-10 with its blueprint and it has the scope of development
     
  15. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Who is comparing India? I am letting you know the Chinese have not been very successful in 'from scratch' to development cycle. Unless the Chinese actually have their hands on something or foreign engineers to help, they aren't likely to be able to develop it. India is the clear leader in the developing world.


    Doesn't really matter for India does it? J-10 is flying en mass and you can thank the Russians for that. As far as export potential, the J-10 will eventually be fitted with a Chinese engine, 3-5 years likely. LCA isn't going to be headed for export in that time frame. J-10B will be a cheap competitor for Russian fighters and will edge them out of the developing market. MiG-35 may be better, but it won't be cost effective and if it doesn't win MMRCA will lose funding.

    True, but the BVRAAM capability would put it on par with their block 50 F-16s. It would be a serious threat to IAF, one of which India would be wise to avoid.
     
  16. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    Yes it is ahead, but not as much as it needs you glorifying them.


    Not only be used on J-11, but also J-10. Like I said, by the time deliveries start to Myanmar, they would have put together an engine by their rickety standards. And that's not "enough acceleration" but faster RPM increase from Idle to Full. It has nothing to do with single or double engine. The reason it's on J-11 is because that is a standard practice to fit such new engines with a second backup engine... in case of a engine failure, the other engine can make the plane land safely. Once it gains enough flying hours it will be approved to be used on J-10s.


    WS-10 cannot be fitted to JF-17. You're confusing WS-10 with WS-13.

    JF-17's intended cost is around 20 million for Chinese avionics. With French avionics, except it to exceed 35 million.


    Like I said, French radars & other avionics don't come cheap. They are too poor to afford that.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2010
  17. gogbot

    gogbot Regular Member

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    I am not glorifying any one , i only give credit where credits due

    I hate being the devils advocate on this but, you guys are setting a serious double standard, While i am usually a willing participant of India Jai hind. we have to accept the reality on the matter that the Chinese are far ahead of India in weapons development.

    Their weapons programs matured in a different way from ours, they were preparing for vastly different war scenario.
    (on of my posts on an older form)

    Key fact we need to accept they have significantly larger amounts of money than India, They spend ridiculous sums of cash on R&D. Why ? because they are trying to be a big player in weapons development, They Have the resources and Skill needed to accomplish the task in record time.

    I can only hope we can get there as fast if not faster, India is well on the way as well, but we need more spending, we need some reform in the R&D practices in India so we can close the gap with the Chinese.

    I am strong believer That equal public and private sector participation in Defence deals will give us a advantage over the largely government run agencies in China.

    India's Russian allies have their own national interests, They have their own Independent bilateral relationship with China,
    either way they have been very cooperative with India on China, every engine China buys from our Russian friend sis conformation of how many J-10's or J-11's the Chinese have, In another wise more secretive program.

    Secondly India and China are not enemy's, We see China as a potential threat yes but not an adversary to be openly fought. Moscow has the same thinking. Teaming up with Moscow on China will just make the, will just create a scenerio where confrontation is more and more likely.

    Neither of the three nations need a war right now, let not operate in a war time environment. Just because there is possibility of it happening



    Its wasted product really, JF-17 will never see any export, if the LCA is offered as counter bit, you get a lot more for you money on the LCA

    Ty for info sir, but is still ordering more engines from Russia.
     
  18. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    See , this is why I said you are glorifying them. Both J-7 and J-6 had Soviet support in the form of both whole delivered planes as well as blueprints. Give India that and even we would be reverse engineering them, only we aren't pirates. You are basically glorifying something like copying during exams and saying even copying requires effort. While it is true copying is not easier, whether in exams or fighter jets, both are not something which should be flaunted as a Pride for a country the size & resources of China. The only thing they are advanced in Aircraft manufacturing now(compared to India) is in the field of Engines.

    Yes they are, but that's not for future production but for current production and spares for their already existing fleets. Remember their Su-30MKKs, J-11a, J-11b and J-10s would need spares and production engines now. All of them have the same engine, that's basically their entire 4th generation fleet.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2010
  19. gogbot

    gogbot Regular Member

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    I am not glorifying anyone.

    US senate suspects China's defense spending to be some where near 100 billion plus.
    They spend mountains of R&D and use their deeper pockets to muscle India from every angle.

    Even without their own innovative weapon systems, as it stands today, They have reverse engineered them selves to the point where it is almost as if they have received full ToT on a huge number of products. From J-11 to Nuclear submarines.

    On top of that, if read my last post about the fallout of the Soviet Union. On of the things the Chinese acquired during its fire sale was the designers and engineers of the soviet war machine, Rather than live in mediocrity in Russia or Ukraine right after the collapse China offered them exuberant sums of money to come and work in China.

    They gave the Chinese huge bonus in their effort for to be a big player,
    The Israelis did the same thing, a lot of soviet engineers hoped over to work for Israeli firms.

    They have their own weapons program that came out due tot he circumstances of their own threats. No one would seel to China, their only choice was to gun it by them selves

    India has vastly different threats and circumstances, We could only focus on indigenous weapons development after we Neutralized Pakistani threat with nukes in the 70's.

    Basically they have had more time and more money as well more tot(reverse engineering). for a longer period of time.

    India has only woken up to this disparity after the soviet fallout some 15 years ago, We realized the consequences of reliance on another power, and only then set out on the serious path to 70% self reliance.

    As it stands we have to understand tha facts .

    We are behind china and need to catch up. there is no uniform disparity on all field, But there is no uniform equality either.

    The fact you fail to understand is, The Chinese as it stands today have the tech and the money to do develop any kind of weapons system they wished.

    we are also on the same boat but our boat is not ging as fast as the Chinese boat. nor is it as big.

    !0 years down the line then we could have developed enough to not only match them at every turn but also overtake.
    But there ae things that have to happen in India and its R&D practices before that can happen. And people need to focus on that issue, and not on what China may or not be capable for doing as even today they are highly secretive and hidden organization.

    To say China can only reverse engineer and it will continue to only do so give its increased stature and power is folly.
    In the same it was folly to assume
    India has had delays and cost over runs for its weapons and it will only continue as we move forward.
     
  20. fulcrum

    fulcrum Regular Member

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    I'm not taking about the future of Chinese Aerospace, I'm talking about their condition today & the very near future. As it stands you were just praising their copying skills and implicitly equating their J-10s with Mig-29s when clearly J-10 is inferior to Mig-29M. When talking about threats, even a J-7 equipped with better radars & BVR is a threat, as Mig-21Bisons proved. Threats are always present... but equating threat and superiority, those are 2 different things.
    As of today and the very near future, the Chinese Aerospace is a tiny dwarf compared to the Big boys out there, which was the essence of my Article. What they might be doing in the future is all subject to speculation, theories and thesis, which is not the scope of this thread.
     
  21. gogbot

    gogbot Regular Member

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    Just because its reverse engineered it does not detract from its lethality or its capability, On that note all Jet fighters and rockets are reverse engineerd German tech.

    You speak as if RE is the worst thing in the world, But if tomorrow India Announces its successfully RE the F-22, I would stand there applauding that achievement. IF that were to happen hypothetically of course It would immediately establish India as one of the most prominet aero space powers yes or no. Or will you same argument that we are just applauding copying still aplly ?

    You look at the Lever of technology available and the new Level fo tech after the RE. there is a huge jump in capabilities, experience and confidence to build something of that nature, That is what is happening in China, they are catching up to the Big players, RE is giveing them a huge boost to do it in record time.

    Well this is a point where you and differ.

    when i look at chines aero space, I see the J-11, WS-10, KJ-200 KJ-2000 and the vast array of Chinese missiles like the PL-12, all those items primarily reverse engineered.

    That is a formidable combination of technology. That they have now.

    The J-10 i dont consider as for starters its a single engine plane, Single engine means economical in favor of more performance based twin engine planes. The J-10 is economical.
    Its performance and Roles vary drastically from the Su-27 and its smaller cousin the Mig-29, which are easily better.
    It is still a confidence and experience boost to the industry

    But the situation is thus that china i its own way has acquired a great deal of technology from Israel, Russia and US. then they implemented it.
    development is not a static item to be looked at only from the present, you have to look ahead. So now i look at what the China can do with all their tech and resources, and what i see is an aerospace power with strong financial backing and technology biding its time working on new projects which will let it come out on to the world stage in big way some time this decade.

    India is in a similar position but a position not as strong. we only recently have put an emphasis on Domestic development. they already have a number of projects on the field whilst ours are still in trials.

    Interesting point.

    J-11 vs Su-20 MKI
    KJ-200 Vs DRDO AECW aircraft
    Kj-2000(reverse engineeded Phalcon) Vs IAF Phalcon
    PL-12 vs ASTRA BVR

    Key point there whiile we can match them, we dont do so completely, and even when we do most of the time its using equipment we buy from foreign suppliers.
     

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