PLAAF JH-XX / H-X bomber project


Deino

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Well perhaps I've ignored this thread for some time and missed the depth of developments but I've seen absolutely nothing to suggest what both of you are saying - 0.000000001% probability of LRIP by end of 2023. I don't understand the sensitivity over such a trivial thing since I've already explained that there is a history of prototypes and tests being performed and completed outside of public view and even CCP hinting. So why exactly is H-20 development having been hidden so unfathomable? Again I'm saying it's between very low chance and a coin toss. A coin toss is significant.


Probably we both have a 100% different perception of PLA watching, which IMO is always the weighting of probabilities and credibility of sources and NO, at least by my understanding there no "history of prototypes and tests being performed and completed outside of public view", at least not to such a scale like a stealth bomber. As such it is again IMO not that the H-20's "development having been hidden so unfathomable", it simply is indeed top-secret and hasn't progressed to a point of a finished prototype.

In consequence again for the "weighting of probabilities and credibility of sources": What is more likely, that it is simply a top secret project that so far has not reached a status of a finished prototype and as such all these hypes rumours especially a service entry 2023 is impossible since these rumours are unreliable or that there is indeed a secret facility that has a prototype done since years, this one is flying since years and available in numbers so it could enter service in 2023?
I feel I've stepped on some nerves without the intention of doing so and will leave this at that. These are just opinions on a rumour. No need to get angry since I haven't delivered it with arrogance and have mentioned plenty of concessions.

I get you two have your reputations to uphold and part of that is to err on the side of being conservative with these sorts of things. But just the one thing worth noting with this. The CCP has never hyped up a not even ready prototype for years before the prototype is even unveiled. It's so contrary to the norm.

And no, I have no fear to uphold any reputation nor do I fear of loosing one, but I have probably indeed some sort of allergic reaction to un-credible rumours, the hype around fan-boy theories and stupid discussions on semantics as if a chance of 0.00000001% would leave any chance to see an operational H-20 soon.
 

ougoah

Major
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Probably we both have a 100% different perception of PLA watching, which IMO is always the weighting of probabilities and credibility of sources and NO, at least by my understanding there no "history of prototypes and tests being performed and completed outside of public view", at least not to such a scale like a stealth bomber. As such it is again IMO not that the H-20's "development having been hidden so unfathomable", it simply is indeed top-secret and hasn't progressed to a point of a finished prototype.

In consequence again for the "weighting of probabilities and credibility of sources": What is more likely, that it is simply a top secret project that so far has not reached a status of a finished prototype and as such all these hypes rumours especially a service entry 2023 is impossible since these rumours are unreliable or that there is indeed a secret facility that has a prototype done since years, this one is flying since years and available in numbers so it could enter service in 2023?


And no, I have no fear to uphold any reputation nor do I fear of loosing one, but I have probably indeed some sort of allergic reaction to un-credible rumours, the hype around fan-boy theories and stupid discussions on semantics as if a chance of 0.00000001% would leave any chance to see an operational H-20 soon.

Well I think perhaps I've confused some crazy fanboy hype as coming from the CCP. There has been so much noise on the H-20 topic, much of which come from fanboy hype and predictions. I'm not sure what is from the CCP and what's not. I guess the major hints surrounding the whole "next" adverts are from the CCP but yes they have not given info beyond that.
 

silentlurker

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Does China has an Area 51 equivalent for secret flight tests somewhere in the Gobi or Talamakan? Seems like the places that could possibly hide an H-20.
 

Deino

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Does China has an Area 51 equivalent for secret flight tests somewhere in the Gobi or Talamakan? Seems like the places that could possibly hide an H-20.


Yes they have, both the PLAAF Dingxin Flight Test & Training Base and Cangzhou Flight Training Base, but at least by all know, each regular type was first tested at the factory, then at the CFTE at X#An-Yanliang and the both PLAAF Flight Test & Training Bases.

Thsi IMO however would never be unnoticed, since for XAC, where the H-20 is designed and built, this is both at Xi'an-Yanliang and I cannot think of a stealth bomber being secretly rolled out, secretly test flown only at night thru all the years at Yanliang without any rumour.

Now one could argue, the H-20 is not a regular type and maybe there is a secret XAC factory somewhere hidden under mountains far far away near a similar secret flight test facility, ... yes, there could also be already a secret moon base where the PLA Space Force tests cloaking devices and photon-torpedoes. ;)
 

ougoah

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Yes they have, both the PLAAF Dingxin Flight Test & Training Base and Cangzhou Flight Training Base, but at least by all know, each regular type was first tested at the factory, then at the CFTE at X#An-Yanliang and the both PLAAF Flight Test & Training Bases.

Thsi IMO however would never be unnoticed, since for XAC, where the H-20 is designed and built, this is both at Xi'an-Yanliang and I cannot think of a stealth bomber being secretly rolled out, secretly test flown only at night thru all the years at Yanliang without any rumour.

Now one could argue, the H-20 is not a regular type and maybe there is a secret XAC factory somewhere hidden under mountains far far away near a similar secret flight test facility, ... yes, there could also be already a secret moon base where the PLA Space Force tests cloaking devices and photon-torpedoes. ;)

But there is no equivalence between a believable secretive facility and comical hyperbole. Also considering China's ability to control leaks and wipe the internet (leaked images often get wiped on military forums within minutes). Let's not get back to pointless semantics but come on. Comparing the potential for secret test facilities that definitely exist in the US (so could also for China) to something like comical moon bases. There's reasonable doubt and reason to doubt. After all, many secretive American vehicles were tested without anyone knowing and whistleblowers and leakers might have an easier time revealing that stuff in the US (might!) but they managed to pull so many off without even the best foreign intelligence efforts gaining that much supposedly.

But then I should also mention that I'm totally onboard with the H-20 is still should be treated as vaporware even if the project is somewhere between design and prototyping. I'm also tired of shitty rumours but more tired of an almost stubborn need to justify bad logic. Sorry there is every possibility (IMO!) that China could pull off secretive testing if that was the intention.
 

Deino

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But there is no equivalence between a believable secretive facility and comical hyperbole. Also considering China's ability to control leaks and wipe the internet (leaked images often get wiped on military forums within minutes). Let's not get back to pointless semantics but come on. Comparing the potential for secret test facilities that definitely exist in the US (so could also for China) to something like comical moon bases. There's reasonable doubt and reason to doubt. After all, many secretive American vehicles were tested without anyone knowing and whistleblowers and leakers might have an easier time revealing that stuff in the US (might!) but they managed to pull so many off without even the best foreign intelligence efforts gaining that much supposedly.

But then I should also mention that I'm totally onboard with the H-20 is still should be treated as vaporware even if the project is somewhere between design and prototyping. I'm also tired of shitty rumours but more tired of an almost stubborn need to justify bad logic. Sorry there is every possibility (IMO!) that China could pull off secretive testing if that was the intention.


But does China's ability to control leaks include images by GoogleEarth, Airbus Astrium and other private agencies? I don't think.

You once again criticise me for "comical hyperbole" and again You are completely wrong. it was a post in full earnest.

Point is, I do not deny that secret bases might exist - in fact I'm quite sure - or that prototypes have been tested already - for fighter sized types and UAV, but IMO unlikely a true full-sized bomber - and indeed sometimes there is truth behind some rumours ... but not based on those rumours that are around leaked by those sources. If such a rumour would be leaked by a credible "big shrimp" I would agree, but a fancy CG in a PLAAF promotional video at the CCTV is IMO not such a "smoking gun".

Again, I may be wrong and in fact I would be happy to be proven wrong, but you mentioned my fear to ruin my reputation ... IMO this reputation (if in fact I have any) is most of all based on my curiosity but also my firmness against untrustworthy sources and the doubt until photo evidence is provided.

By the way, I don't rate the H-20 as vaporware - quite to the contrary - I only think it is too early to expect a prototype and instead of waiting to spin any hypothesis why and where it could be only to met unsubstantial fan-boy dreams. And to think the H-20 will be ready for service and in LRIP is nothing but a wet dream.
 

ougoah

Major
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Yes I share all your doubts and suspicions too. Almost identically. I suppose I like playing devil's advocate a little too much sometimes. You all deserve my apologies for rambling that way. It just seems so out of character for the CCP to be involved in several hint hint moments about H-20 "arriving". I suppose there is every possibility this is more a noteworthy shift in the CCP's attitudes and decision to choose moments to make symbolic gestures to those watching in and out of China about China "arriving" at the grand stage. Maybe they are feeling it is time to push a little further in that regard and play out of character moves like hinting at such militarily sensitive projects WAYYYYYYY before they are getting to LRIP and PLAAF hands.

Remember, this would be the equivalent of hinting at J-20's shape and overall design around 2006. That didn't happen. J-20 prototype reveal came out of nowhere for observers at our level. The 2010 reveal and following publicly shown test flights of J-20 were not preceded by five or so years of hinting at details. Anyway that's me rambling on the same note again.

Was just too out of character for me to say nothing while reading increasingly stubborn attitudes on "impossible" etc when all that needs to overcome this impossibility is some secrete test facilities and hiding from commercial satellites. All that is easy btw. If they wanted to avoid prying eyes in space, they could so easily achieve this. Google earth is the least of those worries. Probably easier than keeping random photographers from revealing too much on the forums in China... if there were any who caught clear snaps. Chinese people generally aren't in the habit of fabricating entire sets of fiction like I say UFO that could be xyz and so on... stealth bombers included.
 

Deino

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But does China's ability to control leaks include images by GoogleEarth, Airbus Astrium and other private agencies? I don't think.

You once again criticise me for "comical hyperbole" and again You are completely wrong. it was a post in full earnest.

Point is, I do not deny that secret bases might exist - in fact I'm quite sure - or that prototypes have been tested already - for fighter sized types and UAV, but IMO unlikely a true full-sized bomber - and indeed sometimes there is truth behind some rumours ... but not based on those rumours that are around leaked by those sources. If such a rumour would be leaked by a credible "big shrimp" I would agree, but a fancy CG in a PLAAF promotional video at the CCTV is IMO not such a "smoking gun".

Again, I may be wrong and in fact I would be happy to be proven wrong, but you mentioned my fear to ruin my reputation ... IMO this reputation (if in fact I have any) is most of all based on my curiosity but also my firmness against untrustworthy sources and the doubt until photo evidence is provided.

Yes I share all your doubts and suspicions too. Almost identically. I suppose I like playing devil's advocate a little too much sometimes. You all deserve my apologies for rambling that way. It just seems so out of character for the CCP to be involved in several hint hint moments about H-20 "arriving". I suppose there is every possibility this is more a noteworthy shift in the CCP's attitudes and decision to choose moments to make symbolic gestures to those watching in and out of China about China "arriving" at the grand stage. Maybe they are feeling it is time to push a little further in that regard and play out of character moves like hinting at such militarily sensitive projects WAYYYYYYY before they are getting to LRIP and PLAAF hands.

Was just too out of character for me to say nothing while reading increasingly stubborn attitudes on "impossible" etc when all that needs to overcome this impossibility is some secrete test facilities and hiding from commercial satellites. All that is easy btw. If they wanted to avoid prying eyes in space, they could so easily achieve this. Google earth is the least of those worries. Probably easier than keeping random photographers from revealing too much on the forums in China... if there were any who caught clear snaps. Chinese people generally aren't in the habit of fabricating entire sets of fiction like I say UFO that could be xyz and so on... stealth bombers included.

No need to apologise, such a discussion - even if harsh sometimes - is always interesting and worthy since one can reevaluate the own arguments and reconsider a different view. As such I'm sorry for any harsh words, none was meant in offence.

Best and take care my friend.
 

dankris

Junior Member
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No need to apologise, such a discussion - even if harsh sometimes - is always interesting and worthy since one can reevaluate the own arguments and reconsider a different view. As such I'm sorry for any harsh words, none was meant in offence.

Best and take care my friend.
I believe @ougoah just wants to emphasize that H-20 LRIP by 2023 is not absolutely impossible, even if it's highly unlikely.

As for your strong dislike of non-credible rumors, maybe the notorious Minnie Chan has something to do with it? ;)
 

siegecrossbow

Brigadier
Staff member
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I think people put too much faith into PLA watchers in China. First of all, reliable information has been scarce ever since military reform in 2016. They built higher walls and better security around air field facilities and photos/videos that do get released are either official or semi-official. Second of all, big shrimps were hit or miss even before tightened security. For every J-20, Type 055, or FC-31 there is also a JH-7B, Chinese Su-34, or stealthified flanker. There is a lot of confirmation bias at work here.
 

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