PLA AEW&C, SIGINT, EW and MPA thread


Tirdent

Junior Member
Registered Member
For tanker use, I see very few cases where the Y-9 is better than a Y-20.
Jets typically have trouble refueling helicopters because they can't safely fly slow enough. But it's a niche application at the best of times, and I don't think China even has any AAR capable helos at the moment.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
The C919 has too many American components which are embargoed against military use.

For tanker use, I see very few cases where the Y-9 is better than a Y-20.

Large vulnerable tanker aircraft are best based in the Chinese interior, so a faster and larger aircraft works out as more effective and efficient in delivering lots of fuel.
On point A I say never stopped them with Boeing 737s. Having the Line in China as well as many components means they have control. Additionally we know they have been working on Indigenous major components such as engines to replace imports. This would be an essential if they intend to go as the CCP wants to get Made in China 2025, or intends to profit from sales to nations like Iran.

Next China needs Tankers Quote unquote but specifically for use with rotary wing. It’s true China doesn’t have any in flight refueling Helicopters then again only one model they had was comparable the S70. Now with there own types emerging and expanded operations they may chose to expand the line.

It’s true for the tanker mission Y20 would be better yet those same notions work for AEW platforms. The Y20 being quad engine means more fuel consumption over longer range vs the twin engine that gives you both that range and efficiency. As such I again point to the Comac line for possible in the longer term. The 919 for tanker/ASW/JSTAR/lower VIP, 929 as Tanker/VIP/Freight.
 
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AndrewS

Major
Registered Member
On point A I say never stopped them with Boeing 737s. Having the Line in China as well as many components means they have control. Additionally we know they have been working on Indigenous major components such as engines to replace imports.
My understanding is that many of the major C919 subsystems are US origin.
The C919 and Y-9 have roughly the same payload and MTOW.
So why bother with the hassle of using the C919?

In comparison, the Y-20 is in a different weight class as it is 3x heavier than the C919 or Y-9.

Next China needs Tankers Quote unquote but specifically for use with rotary wing. It’s true China doesn’t have any in flight refueling Helicopters then again only one model they had was comparable the S70. Now with there own types emerging and expanded operations they may chose to expand the line.
In what scenarios would China need to refuel helicopters?

On the Chinese mainland or in the First Island Chain, it's better to use a tanker truck on land or a commercial ship with a helipad.
An airborne tanker is a very juicy target.

It’s true for the tanker mission Y20 would be better yet those same notions work for AEW platforms. The Y20 being quad engine means more fuel consumption over longer range vs the twin engine that gives you both that range and efficiency. As such I again point to the Comac line for possible in the longer term. The 919 for tanker/ASW/JSTAR/lower VIP, 929 as Tanker/VIP/Freight.
I do see the Y-20 being used as a future AWACs platform.
You need the additional speed and range to operate offshore in the waters past the 1st Island Chain.

But closer in, there isn't as much difference between a Y-20 AWACs and a KJ-500.

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Jet Fuel is actually pretty cheap when you think about it, and not really an issue.
Say a Y-20 carries 100 tonnes @ $4 per kg. That works out as $40K of fuel in total
 

sndef888

New Member
Registered Member
I think most armies worldwide use turboprop planes for early warning systems, since these planes are designed for range and endurance, not speed.
Does turboprop really have better range and endurance? I thought jets would have become more efficient by now. Afterall commercial jets have been pushing for better fuel economy for decades
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
Does turboprop really have better range and endurance? I thought jets would have become more efficient by now. Afterall commercial jets have been pushing for better fuel economy for decades
They are. In fact if we use the Comac 919 vs Y9 . One has 4 engines the other two. Comac our twin engine has a 4,075 km range 5,555 km for the er Y9 the quad engine has 2,200km range with cargo load Strip it down and max the fuel for 5,700 What the difference is that turbofans are better at speed turboprops for crawling. If you not I then debunk his point. Awacs station keeping doesn’t need to crawl or run a figure 8 track will do.
The main advantage it for the prop awacs seems is operating short field. Like C130 it’s designers built it for short and unprepared runways. 919 needs 2,200 m for take offs Y9 should need less than half that (based on An12)
I do see the Y-20 being used as a future AWACs platform.
You need the additional speed and range to operate offshore in the waters past the 1st Island Chain.

But closer in, there isn't as much difference between a Y-20 AWACs and a KJ-500
True but do you need the payload? As you point out.
My understanding is that many of the major C919 subsystems are US origin.
The C919 and Y-9 have roughly the same payload and MTOW.
So why bother with the hassle of using the C919?

In comparison, the Y-20 is in a different weight class as it is 3x heavier than the C919 or Y-9.
C919 payload 20,400 kg Y9 25,000kg but generally I doubt that the AEW package takes anywhere near the whole payload, and second it seems like the question should be do you need something that big? The Kj2000 has had only a small number built, based on what we know of the system it seems like it’s performance vs the Kj500 is a virtual 1 to 1 in tracking and scanning.
I may need to reassess my assumption on range of C919 for the job yet I still think it favors a Civilian bird perhaps the 929 vs the Y20. A twin jet will always be cheaper to operate vs a quad jet. Fuel might seem cheap but the bean counters are the deciding factor. That means a tank of fuel or what ever else you can use the money on like spare parts.
 

AndrewS

Major
Registered Member
They are. In fact if we use the Comac 919 vs Y9 . One has 4 engines the other two. Comac our twin engine has a 4,075 km range 5,555 km for the er Y9 the quad engine has 2,200km range with cargo load Strip it down and max the fuel for 5,700 What the difference is that turbofans are better at speed turboprops for crawling. If you not I then debunk his point. Awacs station keeping doesn’t need to crawl or run a figure 8 track will do.
The main advantage it for the prop awacs seems is operating short field. Like C130 it’s designers built it for short and unprepared runways. 919 needs 2,200 m for take offs Y9 should need less than half that (based on An12)
I see the main advantages of a Y-9 as being cost and availability.
The C919 is not available as a military platform, and the Y-20 is 3x heavier and more expensive.
Short-take off is just bonus.

True but do you need the payload? As you point out.
C919 payload 20,400 kg Y9 25,000kg but generally I doubt that the AEW package takes anywhere near the whole payload, and second it seems like the question should be do you need something that big? The Kj2000 has had only a small number built, based on what we know of the system it seems like it’s performance vs the Kj500 is a virtual 1 to 1 in tracking and scanning.
I may need to reassess my assumption on range of C919 for the job yet I still think it favors a Civilian bird perhaps the 929 vs the Y20. A twin jet will always be cheaper to operate vs a quad jet. Fuel might seem cheap but the bean counters are the deciding factor. That means a tank of fuel or what ever else you can use the money on like spare parts.
Payload is correlated with range and fuel.
I agree the C919 or C929 would be a better option for an AWACs plane than the Y-9 or Y-20.

But the purpose of the C919 and C929 is to build a world-class commercial airliner industry which will have a lot of benefits to the overall aerospace industry in China, and not to get sanctioned by the USA because it is being used for military purposes.
 

silentlurker

Junior Member
Registered Member
They are. In fact if we use the Comac 919 vs Y9 . One has 4 engines the other two. Comac our twin engine has a 4,075 km range 5,555 km for the er Y9 the quad engine has 2,200km range with cargo load Strip it down and max the fuel for 5,700 What the difference is that turbofans are better at speed turboprops for crawling. If you not I then debunk his point. Awacs station keeping doesn’t need to crawl or run a figure 8 track will do.
The main advantage it for the prop awacs seems is operating short field. Like C130 it’s designers built it for short and unprepared runways. 919 needs 2,200 m for take offs Y9 should need less than half that (based on An12)

True but do you need the payload? As you point out.
C919 payload 20,400 kg Y9 25,000kg but generally I doubt that the AEW package takes anywhere near the whole payload, and second it seems like the question should be do you need something that big? The Kj2000 has had only a small number built, based on what we know of the system it seems like it’s performance vs the Kj500 is a virtual 1 to 1 in tracking and scanning.
I may need to reassess my assumption on range of C919 for the job yet I still think it favors a Civilian bird perhaps the 929 vs the Y20. A twin jet will always be cheaper to operate vs a quad jet. Fuel might seem cheap but the bean counters are the deciding factor. That means a tank of fuel or what ever else you can use the money on like spare parts.
When I speak of effeciency, I am talking about the specific impulse or thrust per fuel unit, which will always be better for a turboprop at low speeds, since propellors move a larger mass of air at lower speeds compared to a turbofan of the same size.

Comparing range of different planes is not accurate since other factors like fuel capacity, drag, and engine designe efficiency apply.
 

sndef888

New Member
Registered Member
Anybody knows the endurance of a KJ-500 at cruising speed? Some websites say only 5 hours but some say over 10 hours lol
 

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