Chinese Engine Development


Hendrik_2000

Brigadier
Seems China's MechE accomplishments trail ChemE and Electric/Electronic Engineering. Lack of consumer goods using MechE perhaps?
Not really mechanical engineering machinery are subjected to high temperature, friction and high centrifugal forces, vibration, fatigue, creep, wear and tear. So it depend on material science, precision machining, skill, design ingenuity , access to precision machinery like CNC. Trial and error over time. Which take a long time to master. No wonder only old tech country like Germany, Japan, US, UK, French are the leader in this field.

There is no way of skipping the process So China has to go thru the same learning curve that take time. But now it seem they overcome all the challenge and produce a mature maybe not the best But very good Gas Turbine
 

ougoah

Colonel
Registered Member
It's materials engineering when it comes to engines and manufacturing engineering. It is truly impressive, exclusive sciences that are not taught. Most of it is proprietary technology held only by a few suppliers in maybe 5 nations. The US and UK are the main top dogs when it comes to this (both the materials and manufacturing of GT and turbofans). Russia, Ukraine, and France are overall second tier compared to US/UK. China is a recent arrival and trying hard to reach that second tier category. It has more funding than Russia and Ukraine but not the vast decades of experience and building those industries like the other five nations. It has now got 10 years running record for WS-10 which is good and iterations of that base platform. The platform's core design is an American/French engine CFM which China produced components for? correct me if I'm wrong. But no one shows the materials and it cannot be reverse engineered unless you have the production methods. Even then you may not have the same production machinery and tools.

That was 1990s to early 2000s China. Now if it can put into service the WS-20 and CJ-1000 along with WS-15 and WS-19, it would be easily in that second tier category. No one taught China how to build the WS-10, how to fabricate its components, the tools and machinery used in the processes. It was all an iterative improvement on past lessons. The WS-10 wasn't China's first turbofan although it was the first domestically engineered and made one despite its core having a similar design based on a CFM HBR engine.

Japan may have an overall better technology base than China when it comes to this. They're particularly good at GTs but military turbofans haven't been given much attention. Ukraine was the centre of military propulsion industry in USSR outside of Russia. It accommodated tank engine design bureaus and manufacturers, helicopter engines, rocket engines, and of course fixed wing aircraft engines.

Materials science and manufacturing engineering is often quite a lot more iterative and demands time invested, experimentation, failures from experimentation/testing, and breakthroughs. No one shares a shred of information, rarely even to allies. Sold finished products don't count and reverse engineering a finished engine in terms of materials is like uncooking an egg. With China's mastering of single crystal blades, then hollow blades, super alloys used in engines, and various manufacturing technologies, it's really not missing anything from Ukraine in the materials and manufacturing side. The Motor Sich purchase could secure a particular small turbofan for China's trainer jet but Russia has an alternative product which can be bought. If not, China would just need to spend the time to develop one. It's not a matter of whether or not it could but a matter of how much time it would cost. Motor Sich's helicopter engines and HBR turbofans could also hold benefit for China since those fields seemingly have not been given as much resource as engines for fighters.
 

gelgoog

Captain
Registered Member
Japan does ok with engines. Not stellar but ok. They have a pretty modern regular combustion engine industry. For example they designed and produced the Type 10 tank engine and transmission. With regards to aircraft engines, they made the engines for the Kawasaki P-1, and the IHI XF-9 engine prototype for the F-3. They make their own rocket engines like the LE-5 and LE-9.
They also produce a lot of engines under license or just straight out acquire them but they could be doing worse.

In the civilian sector they produce large gas turbines for power plant applications - among the best in the world.
 

ougoah

Colonel
Registered Member
Japan does ok with engines. Not stellar but ok. They have a pretty modern regular combustion engine industry. For example they designed and produced the Type 10 tank engine and transmission. With regards to aircraft engines, they made the engines for the Kawasaki P-1, and the IHI XF-9 engine prototype for the F-3. They make their own rocket engines like the LE-5 and LE-9.
They also produce a lot of engines under license or just straight out acquire them but they could be doing worse.

In the civilian sector they produce large gas turbines for power plant applications - among the best in the world.

Yep. I think Japan still has an overall better industrial base for engines than China does but its military engine programs are not as well funded and spread out as China's. If Japan didn't have a military budget cap, they would be tier 1 for sure.
 

voyager1

Captain
Registered Member
Yep. I think Japan still has an overall better industrial base for engines than China does but its military engine programs are not as well funded and spread out as China's. If Japan didn't have a military budget cap, they would be tier 1 for sure.
Offtopic but jumping in to say that Japan is dropping its budget cap
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“We must increase our defense capabilities at a radically different pace than in the past,” considering China’s increased capabilities,
"We will properly allocate the funding we need to protect our nation" without considering outlays in relation to GDP, he said.
 

ougoah

Colonel
Registered Member
Offtopic but jumping in to say that Japan is dropping its budget cap
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Yep. Which is why I noted that.

Would be interesting to see how well Japan does in a few decades time as it goes into these military propulsion fields without hands tied. It would be in all east asian nations interest if Japan and China develop a working relation which means lower threat of destabilising forces like war or trade wars, but a friendly Japan China would mean at least resolving island dispute and Korean tensions. If the Korean war was to become officially over and there is reduced threat of war from either side, Japan doesn't need to be a threat to China and vice versa. Although I doubt either side will settle island dispute and concede. Hopefully a mini arms race brings out the best and further boosts China. Japan's economic woes are not exactly on its way to being over yet. It is putting people into poverty while China's still a per capita fraction of Japan's productivity, it still has population advantage (workable and productive population) and it is going to be on an economic upswing for the next 20 years.
 

davidau

Junior Member
Registered Member
Yep. Which is why I noted that.

Would be interesting to see how well Japan does in a few decades time as it goes into these military propulsion fields without hands tied. It would be in all east asian nations interest if Japan and China develop a working relation which means lower threat of destabilising forces like war or trade wars, but a friendly Japan China would mean at least resolving island dispute and Korean tensions. If the Korean war was to become officially over and there is reduced threat of war from either side, Japan doesn't need to be a threat to China and vice versa. Although I doubt either side will settle island dispute and concede. Hopefully a mini arms race brings out the best and further boosts China. Japan's economic woes are not exactly on its way to being over yet. It is putting people into poverty while China's still a per capita fraction of Japan's productivity, it still has population advantage (workable and productive population) and it is going to be on an economic upswing for the next 20 years.
Enjoy your hypothesis, however there is too much bad blood between the two before and after the WWII. Would not see the issues of Taiwan, Diaoyu [spelling] island will be solved in anytime soon as Japs and yanks support each other to frustrate China. Recently, Japs have proposed to have 500 armed soldiers to stay on the island and to defend it. Unless these two allied antagonists face reality that these islands belong to China, there is little hope for peace. Historically and geographically the Diaoyu island chain belongs to China and Taiwan is part of China. Face reality. Period.
 

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