This is an exciting piece of good news! The Global Times released a video on November 22, exposing the latest J-15T carrier-based fighter of the Chinese navy. According to the report, the J-15T carrier-based fighter is the first advanced carrier-based fighter with ejection take-off capability in China.
This video has a lot of information. Because this aircraft is China’s large aircraft carrier, it may also be the standard configuration of domestic ejection carrier-based fighter equipment equipped with nuclear aircraft carriers, so the American media also published an article saying that China’s new generation of aircraft carriers is about to emerge. According to reports, the J-15T fighter used the domestic WS-10 “Taihang” engine, replacing the original Russian-made AL-31FN engine.
It has always been the dream of all Chinese people to build a large ocean-going fleet with aircraft carriers as the core. In September 2012, China purchased the basically completed Soviet aircraft carrier “Varyag” from Ukraine. After years of exploration and modification, it was named Liaoning and joined the People’s Navy, becoming China’s first aircraft carrier.
However, China’s aircraft carrier plan is far more than simply modifying and upgrading Russian semi-finished products. Soon, China’s first aircraft carrier “Shandong” independently developed and built was also completed and delivered, and since then entered the era of dual aircraft carriers.
Aircraft carriers rely on the carrier-based aircraft they carry to give full play to their combat effectiveness. Since Liaoning began to upgrade and refit in 2002, China has begun to explore aircraft carrier-based aircraft. Because Liaoning is a modified product of the Soviet Union’s Varyag, it is naturally the best configuration to directly match the Russian fighter.
During this period, we purchased a carrier-based fighter technology verification aircraft, T-10K-03, from Ukraine, and independently explored and developed the J-15 on this basis.
The appearance of the J-15 fighter is based on Russia’s mature Su-33 carrier-based fighter, but due to the large-scale use of new domestic materials, it is about 1 ton lighter than the Su-33. This means that the J-15 fighter can carry about 1 ton of fuel or weapon ammunition than the Su-33 at the same take-off weight.
Especially in recent years, China’s progress in avionics technology has equipped the J-15 fighter with more advanced radar and operating systems. At the same time, China’s new generation of air-to-air missiles, air-ship missiles, air-to-surface precision strike weapons, etc., have surpassed Russia in terms of technology and type, second only to the United States. .
Although the J-15 is a fourth-generation fighter, its performance is no less than that of the U.S. Navy’s active carrier-based fighter F/A-18E/F “Super Hornet”. Because the J-15 fighter is upgraded and developed by the J-11 fighter, its fuselage itself is relatively redundant and can be upgraded on a large scale.
Although the U.S. Navy’s carrier-based aircraft began to develop into stealth-in fifth-generation fighter jets, the fourth-generation carrier-based fighter aircraft are still very useful.
Especially with the progress of science and technology, the mode of combat with manned fighter jets and long-range command of stealth drones began to appear. Heavy non-stealth fighters like the J-15 are likely to last longer.
There is no doubt that the J-15T fighter with ejection function will be the capital ship-based fighter of the Chinese navy for a long time to come. The installation of this aircraft allows the Chinese naval aviation in one step and has similar technical performance as the U.S. Navy aviation. It is an important milestone in the development of China’s naval carrier-based aviation.
Time has never been a measure of technological advancement. Thanks to technological progress, China has been able to abandon the early through-deck aircraft carrier and piston-engined carrier-based fighters and directly develop modern aircraft carriers equipped with jet fighters. We started with a large aircraft carrier of the 60,000-ton class, and the carrier-based fighter is also a double-engine heavy J-15 fighter. That’s why the Chinese navy can overtake in corners in less than 20 years.
The emergence of the J-15T fighter aircraft implies that China’s next generation of aircraft carriers with catapults on the deck are basically in place. Relying on catapults, in the future, in addition to carrying J-15T fighter jets, China’s aircraft carriers can also carry early warning aircraft, anti-submarine aircraft and other auxiliary aircraft, thus forming a perfect naval and air combat network, thus multiplying the combat effectiveness of the entire aircraft carrier.
Although the J-15T fighter cannot fully compete with the fifth-generation stealth fighter, globally, besides the U.S. Navy, which navy has carrier-based functions that fight against the J-15T.