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SAC FC-31 Stealth Fighter: News & Discussions

FuturePAF

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NO NO NO
Pakistan can't afford the project alone. It is much much more expensive than the project of JF-17/FC-1.

And IMO, the development model like JF-17/FC-1 is impossible in the future.
They key are the engines. Once the WS-19 engines reach a level of maturity and reliability, building the platform is relatively easier for Chinese industry these days. Also, as China ramps up production of the J-20 and possibly J-35, the per unit cost of components will drop, which is where a purchase/investment for co-production would make the most sense. Pakistan has to focus nowadays ok maximizing the JF-17 as the design evolves, while at the same time the J-35 develops with PLANAF funding. Then, the PAF will probably make a purchase (after it has reached the limit of what it can do with the JF-17) when the J-35 design is deemed mature, similar to PAF probably purchasing the J-10CE, now that the design is seen as mature enough.
 
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LKJ86

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They key are the engines. Once the WS-19 engines reach a level of maturity and reliability, building the platform is relatively easier for Chinese industry these days. Also, as China ramps up production of the J-20 and possibly J-35, the per unit cost of components will drop, which is where a purchase/investment for co-production would make the most sense. Pakistan has to maximize the JF-17 as the design evolves, while at the same time the J-35 develops with PLANAF funding. PAF will probably make a purchase when the J-35 design is deemed mature, similar to PAF probably purchasing the J-10CE, now that the design is seen as mature enough.
The engines are not the key issue. WS-13E is ready, just like WS-10 to J-20.

And you just miss the key point: The needs of PLAAF/PLAN are not the same as those of PAF.

That is also why PLAAF/PLAN would never consider JF-17/FC-1 that is developed according to the needs of PAF.

SAC and CAC focus on the needs of PLAAF and PLAN.
 

CIA Mole

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The engines are not the key issue. WS-13E is ready, just like WS-10 to J-20.

And you just miss the key point: The needs of PLAAF/PLAN are not the same as those of PAF.

That is also why PLAAF/PLAN would never consider JF-17/FC-1 that is developped according to the needs of PAF.

SAC and CAC focus on the needs of PLAAF and PLAN.
Hmm what are their needs? Is it similar to US doctrine?
 

FuturePAF

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The engines are not the key issue. WS-13E is ready, just like WS-10 to J-20.

And you just miss the key point: The needs of PLAAF/PLAN are not the same as those of PAF.

That is also why PLAAF/PLAN would never consider JF-17/FC-1 that is developed according to the needs of PAF.

SAC and CAC focus on the needs of PLAAF and PLAN.
I didn’t mean the needs are the same for the PLANAF and the PAF, rather the PAF with its limited budget can’t afford to go through the development process at a relatively early stage. Obviously the CAC and SAC design for their primary customer.
 

Ali_Baba

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If Pakistan dump in money, this project can kick start much earlier. Shenyang desperately need investment since during early stage of this project when PLAAF and PLANAF not interested. SAC flies this plane(FC-31) in Airshow trying hard to get investor for this project.
The FC-1 / JF17 project was meant to be a 50%/50% cost share model between Pakistan and China.

China pulled out of the cost-sharing of the JF17 when it decided it did not meet its "requirements".

Pakistan had to fund the entire project on its own - this affected the speed of the development programme and the overall cost to Pakistan. This affected Pakistan defence, as Pakistan can now only afford fewer units of the JF17 that it originally planned to as it spent so much developing the plane. In addition, most of the core Intellectual propery (IP) ownership for the project is owned by China even though Pakistan paid for the development for almost all of it.

Pakistan only gets a profit share - and ownership of IP is limited.

That is why Pakistan is doing project Azm ... that experience left a sour taste in Pakistan's mouth .. Pakistan will pay and develop its own IP where possible.

Pakistan is not going to 100% fund another fighter where China owns all of the intellectual property rights and manufacturing rights. Profit share is not enough ....

China needs to fund the J31 to J35 and if J35 turns out to be a good product - then Pakistan will review it as a common off the shelf purchase only under those circumstances.
 

siegecrossbow

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If Pakistan dump in money, this project can kick start much earlier. Shenyang desperately need investment since during early stage of this project when PLAAF and PLANAF not interested. SAC flies this plane(FC-31) in Airshow trying hard to get investor for this project.
Has Pakistan collaborated with SAC post F-6 (J-6)?
 

Daniel808

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The FC-1 / JF17 project was meant to be a 50%/50% cost share model between Pakistan and China.

China pulled out of the cost-sharing of the JF17 when it decided it did not meet its "requirements".

Pakistan had to fund the entire project on its own - this affected the speed of the development programme and the overall cost to Pakistan. This affected Pakistan defence, as Pakistan can now only afford fewer units of the JF17 that it originally planned to as it spent so much developing the plane. In addition, most of the core Intellectual propery (IP) ownership for the project is owned by China even though Pakistan paid for the development for almost all of it.

Pakistan only gets a profit share - and ownership of IP is limited.

That is why Pakistan is doing project Azm ... that experience left a sour taste in Pakistan's mouth .. Pakistan will pay and develop its own IP where possible.

Pakistan is not going to 100% fund another fighter where China owns all of the intellectual property rights and manufacturing rights. Profit share is not enough ....

China needs to fund the J31 to J35 and if J35 turns out to be a good product - then Pakistan will review it as a common off the shelf purchase only under those circumstances.
But China develop J-35 as 5th Gen Carrier-Based Stealth Fighter

images - 2021-06-13T211720.893.jpeg
images - 2021-06-13T211712.049.jpeg
 

CrazyZ

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The engines are not the key issue. WS-13E is ready, just like WS-10 to J-20.

And you just miss the key point: The needs of PLAAF/PLAN are not the same as those of PAF.

That is also why PLAAF/PLAN would never consider JF-17/FC-1 that is developed according to the needs of PAF.

SAC and CAC focus on the needs of PLAAF and PLAN.
100% agree. PLAAF/PLAN don't need JF-17/FC-1. Light fighters meet most of PAF's tactical needs...but not the best for fighting in the pacific theatre. There is more overlap with J31,IMO. PAF needs a medium sized advanced fighter to replace the F-16 as the high end of its fleet. A finished J31 is the best potential replacement.

Taking the F-35 as a comparison, I expect after models for PLAAF/PLAN are designed and in production an export version will be offered to Chinese client states. Also, I think China is proceeding quickly on J31...especially when compared to the USA F-35 program. which took a decade to get to the point J-31 is in a few years. For me its just a matter of being patient and waiting.
 

CrazyZ

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The FC-1 / JF17 project was meant to be a 50%/50% cost share model between Pakistan and China.

China pulled out of the cost-sharing of the JF17 when it decided it did not meet its "requirements".

Pakistan had to fund the entire project on its own - this affected the speed of the development programme and the overall cost to Pakistan. This affected Pakistan defence, as Pakistan can now only afford fewer units of the JF17 that it originally planned to as it spent so much developing the plane. In addition, most of the core Intellectual propery (IP) ownership for the project is owned by China even though Pakistan paid for the development for almost all of it.

Pakistan only gets a profit share - and ownership of IP is limited.

That is why Pakistan is doing project Azm ... that experience left a sour taste in Pakistan's mouth .. Pakistan will pay and develop its own IP where possible.

Pakistan is not going to 100% fund another fighter where China owns all of the intellectual property rights and manufacturing rights. Profit share is not enough ....

China needs to fund the J31 to J35 and if J35 turns out to be a good product - then Pakistan will review it as a common off the shelf purchase only under those circumstances.
The development and production of a globally competitive 5 gen stealth fighter will require the backing from the military of a major global power with a history of making combat AC (that means China, USA, EU or Russia). We need to keep an eye on J31/35.....even if we continue with AZM silently in the background. We must be pragmatic.
 

Ali_Baba

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The development and production of a globally competitive 5 gen stealth fighter will require the backing from the military of a major global power with a history of making combat AC (that means China, USA, EU or Russia). We need to keep an eye on J31/35.....even if we continue with AZM silently in the background. We must be pragmatic.
Agree for sure - I think PAF will wait and see what becomes of both TF-X and AZM.

I would be suprised if PAF thinks it can develop its own 5th Generation airframe from scratch with the corresponding FBW system. Truly suprised, given there has been no experience of designing a simple plane in Pakistan of any type for military purposes, or civilian ( there is the occasional one report about license manufacture of civilian planes in Pakistan ). To design a flybe wire that matches the needs of the airframe is very complex. You have to look how long it took the FBW for the Eurofighter, and even how long it took India to develop one for Tejas.

Even if China has given the source code and hardware design of the FBW for the JF17 to Pakistan, that would not be enough as any 5th Gen platform with stealth, will most likely be unstable. It is of course now actively working on UAVs/UCAVs etc.

Pakistan has designed cruise missiles, and ballistic missiles in house and from scratch, so part of the engineering talent is there.

Pakistan has not really defined clearly what Azm is interms of both the platform or the programme, so it is difficult to measure how they will get there. Based on PAF timelines for Azm, it will not be a greenfied new platform from scratch, but a derivative of either TFX or J35.
 

CrazyZ

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Agree for sure - I think PAF will wait and see what becomes of both TF-X and AZM.

I would be suprised if PAF thinks it can develop its own 5th Generation airframe from scratch with the corresponding FBW system. Truly suprised, given there has been no experience of designing a simple plane in Pakistan of any type for military purposes, or civilian ( there is the occasional one report about license manufacture of civilian planes in Pakistan ). To design a flybe wire that matches the needs of the airframe is very complex. You have to look how long it took the FBW for the Eurofighter, and even how long it took India to develop one for Tejas.

Even if China has given the source code and hardware design of the FBW for the JF17 to Pakistan, that would not be enough as any 5th Gen platform with stealth, will most likely be unstable. It is of course now actively working on UAVs/UCAVs etc.

Pakistan has designed cruise missiles, and ballistic missiles in house and from scratch, so part of the engineering talent is there.

Pakistan has not really defined clearly what Azm is interms of both the platform or the programme, so it is difficult to measure how they will get there. Based on PAF timelines for Azm, it will not be a greenfied new platform from scratch, but a derivative of either TFX or J35.
Correct. You must also consider unit costs. If a big buyer like PLAAF/PLAN is buying many 100's of J-31/J35 unit costs for client states will be lower just due economies of scale. Similarly, client state purchases will lower the unit costs for the PLAAF/PLAN as well (but to a lesser extent). Its win win.

A from scratch AZM would have to import engines and electronics from China anyway. Unit costs could be higher then J-31/J35 that is bought cooperatively by PLAAF/PLAN, PAF, and a few other China client states....due to economies of scale.

Best approach may be to work SAC on a tailored J31/J35 for PAF's needs. That may ultimately be what AZM turns out to be.
 
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kungfugymnast

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Correct. You must also consider unit costs. If a big buyer like PLAAF/PLAN is buying many 100's of J-31/J35 unit costs for client states will be lower just due economies of scale. Similarly, client state purchases will lower the unit costs for the PLAAF/PLAN as well (but to a lesser extent). Its win win.

A from scratch AZM would have to import engines and electronics from China anyway. Unit costs could be higher then J-31/J35 that is bought cooperatively by PLAAF/PLAN, PAF, and a few other China client states....due to economies of scale.

Best approach may be to work SAC on a tailored J31/J35 for PAF's needs. That may ultimately be what AZM turns out to be.
FC-31 will likely be sold to PAF to get combat proven like JF-17. China navy would need larger longer range stealth fighter with side internal bays to meet criteria. The FC-31 will only serve as test bed for aircraft carrier EMALS launch and take off research. WS-13 & WS-19 engines could fit JF-17 which means it is practical for PAF to buy even just few FC-31 for strategic interdiction air strikes and high asset value interception sorties if there's budget constraints.
 

waja2000

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FC-31 will likely be sold to PAF to get combat proven like JF-17. China navy would need larger longer range stealth fighter with side internal bays to meet criteria. The FC-31 will only serve as test bed for aircraft carrier EMALS launch and take off research. WS-13 & WS-19 engines could fit JF-17 which means it is practical for PAF to buy even just few FC-31 for strategic interdiction air strikes and high asset value interception sorties if there's budget constraints.
I for see PAF need alot FC-31 (or other 5 Gen fighter) since need to facing india AMCA start 2027.
 

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