Experts from The National Interest shed new light on developments surrounding China’s new fifth-generation warplanes.
The focus will be on the People’s Liberation Army Air Force’s (PLAAF) new heavy subsonic stealth bomber, with the reported capacity to strike US military assets in Hawaii.
Called the “JH-XX,” the stealth bomber remains somewhat of a mystery, though The National Interest points out through a recent edition of the Chinese magazine “Aerospace Knowledge,” a possible rendering of the plane was displayed.
“The JH-XX may feature an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, but little is known of its avionics package beyond that. The fighter will reportedly have a combat radius of roughly 3,000 kilometers and be capable of supersonic flight.
“JH-XX appears to fill a regional role—the medium-range bomber is poised to help Beijing deter competitors and contest airspace in the East and South China seas and the Yellow and Japan seas to China’s northeast.
“To this end, the JH-XX will likely carry the PLAAF’s latest side-mounted, beyond visual range air-to-air missiles,” The National Interest wrote.
Frontpage of Aerospace Knowledge
Previously reported, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) noted in an annual report on Chinese military power about the developments of Chinese stealth bombers.
“The PLAAF is developing new medium- and long-range stealth bombers to strike regional and global targets. Stealth technology continues to play a key role in the development of these new bombers, which probably will reach initial operational capability no sooner than 2025.”
The DIA revealed China is working on the Xian H-20, a subsonic stealth bomber design that looks similar to the B-1 Lancer, along with the JH-XX.
It remains unclear if the JH-XX design concept ever made it into the development phase, let alone pre-production.
New developments about the JH-XX comes as its first stealth fighter jet, J-20, entered mass production this past summer. It also comes as the US and its allies surround China with stealth fighters, called “F-35 friends circle.”