Shenyang FC-31 / J-31 Fighter Demonstrator

Lol how does Inst know that YF-23 is stealthier than F-22? I mean it's never progressed beyond prototyping. While it may be possible that the shaping is indeed stealthier, there are MANY elements to VLO and even if we assume those are equal or superior to that of F-22, you need to PROVE to us that the shaping gives the YF-23 lower RCS alone if all other factors equal. This has always been internet rumour type quality content. Was never proven or officially disclosed.
Actually I believe the design teams acknowledged that the YF-23 was not only a lower RCS design, but faster as well, however the YF-22 had larger weapons bays, (and actually launched weapons, though not a requirement), the YF-22 also employed OVT which along with the conventional layout, drove maneuverability way up.

While not the only factors, LockMart was ready to roll on the YF-22, while the YF-23 would have required more work, had smaller bays, etc, etc.
 
Shaping-wise, the YF-23 was superior to the YF-22. But the YF-23 was a prototype and the F-22 was a finished product, which implies that the F-22 should be stealthier than the YF-22 and probably the YF-23.

But if the YF-23 were fully developed, unlike the F-22, the YF-23 had V-tails instead of tailfin / tail combo, and its edge-alignment was better.
The YF-23 and the YF-22 were both proto-types...
 

longmarch

Junior Member
Registered Member
I'm nobody too but J-31 is just a twin-engined 35, with underpowered engines. That's what it is. The big difference between v1 and v2 shows that the designers didn't spend enough time study the what and how. There is a need for a cheaper and medium sized option to counter the proliferation of stealth fighters. Regional power also have this need. For example when Singapore gets its hands on F-35, Malaysia would want to have something to counter it. Or when India has its stealth aircraft, Parkistan would want to have something. But these needs are not urgent ones and 601 can take their time to tinker and figure out what they are doing, while waiting for an advanced engine.

I'm more interested in carrier based version. I hope it'll be a heavy, long range one, not something based on J-31.
 
I'm nobody too but J-31 is just a twin-engined 35, with underpowered engines. That's what it is. The big difference between v1 and v2 shows that the designers didn't spend enough time study the what and how. There is a need for a cheaper and medium sized option to counter the proliferation of stealth fighters. Regional power also have this need. For example when Singapore gets its hands on F-35, Malaysia would want to have something to counter it. Or when India has its stealth aircraft, Parkistan would want to have something. But these needs are not urgent ones and 601 can take their time to tinker and figure out what they are doing, while waiting for an advanced engine.

I'm more interested in carrier based version. I hope it'll be a heavy, long range one, not something based on J-31.
Actually the FC-31 went through similar changes to the J-20 in clipping the tips etc from the prototype.. I understand your desire for a heavy fighter to fly off the carriers, but lets not throw the baby out with the bath water, the FC-31 is a very fine airplane. What SAC eventually does with it? depends on demand by the military, and you're right, there are no doubt foreign customers for such an airplane.
 

Deino

Lieutenant General
Staff member
Super Moderator
I'm nobody too but J-31 is just a twin-engined 35, with underpowered engines. That's what it is. The big difference between v1 and v2 shows that the designers didn't spend enough time study the what and how. There is a need for a cheaper and medium sized option to counter the proliferation of stealth fighters. Regional power also have this need. For example when Singapore gets its hands on F-35, Malaysia would want to have something to counter it. Or when India has its stealth aircraft, Parkistan would want to have something. But these needs are not urgent ones and 601 can take their time to tinker and figure out what they are doing, while waiting for an advanced engine.

I'm more interested in carrier based version. I hope it'll be a heavy, long range one, not something based on J-31.
I really don't understand all this lamenting! :mad::(

IMO the FC-31 is a great concept and all it lacks is a decent modern engine and - and here the rumours are quite varying - a hard confirmation from the PLA. But hey, maybe there is already one and they only do not want to unveil their true intentions ...
 

Deino

Lieutenant General
Staff member
Super Moderator
Why do people say this, the WS-19 has been all but confirmed (we even have a picture of it). It's not ready now, but neither is the plane.
But that's exactly the reason, why peoples are so impatient and think it is a bad design. Yes, the RD-93 is in no way an option to enter service in the same way as an interim the PLAAF adopted with the AL-31FN and now WS-10C for the J-20 but when the WS-19 is done, it could be a great fighter.
 

Biscuits

Junior Member
Registered Member
Honestly since China already has a top class small engine, it would be a waste not to make J-31 a reality. Otherwise, the WS-19 will be limited to drones only.

Biggest issue is whether J-31 would overlap too much with J-20.

Once finished, the J-31 will also be an a2a close range focused fighter with strong BVR options, aka no different to J-20, except being smaller and slightly less expensive.

To prevent overlap, China could try to make one of them into a strike focused stealth fighter while the other retains air superiority/high end interceptor roles.
 

taxiya

Major
Registered Member
Honestly since China already has a top class small engine, it would be a waste not to make J-31 a reality. Otherwise, the WS-19 will be limited to drones only.

Biggest issue is whether J-31 would overlap too much with J-20.

Once finished, the J-31 will also be an a2a close range focused fighter with strong BVR options, aka no different to J-20, except being smaller and slightly less expensive.

To prevent overlap, China could try to make one of them into a strike focused stealth fighter while the other retains air superiority/high end interceptor roles.
It would be an even bigger waste of resources just to make use a good engine IF PLA does not need a mid or small sized aircraft.

At the end, the question remains, what does PLA need FC-31 for? I am not speaking for PLA, but just want to remind us not to forget that the very reason of FC-31 in PLA is not its engine, but PLA's need.

It is akin to daily life, you find a very nice cloth at good price but not your size, buying and wearing it would be a waste even if it is cheap.
 

defenceman

Junior Member
Registered Member
Hi isn’t it possible that in near future j31 can take off from a catapult ACC this way both the organisations have time
To develop catapult & a decent engine for J31 as I’m sure with at least 4-6 ACC China will be looking for a stealth
Plane on these future ACCs
So I think we can revisit J31 development around say another 3-4 years time period or may be less
Thank you
 
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