It is great that we finally have confirmation that the Z-20 is using domestic engines (almost certainly WZ-10).
Z-20 chopper features powerful homemade engine
By Liu Xuanzun and Liu Yang in Tianjin Source:Global Times Published: 2019/10/10 22:28:40
China's latest commissioned and domestically-manufactured military helicopter, the Z-20, is equipped with a homemade engine powerful enough for it to fly in low-oxygen plateaus and features world-leading innovative technology, said the chopper's makers prior to the 5th China Helicopter Expo on Thursday.
The Z-20 is making its first exhibit appearance at the 5th China Helicopter Expo in Tianjin, which runs from Thursday to Sunday.
The Fenglei aerobatics team of the People's Liberation Army performed on Thursday, where the chopper also made a static display.
Joining the Z-20 at the expo are the Z-19 attack helicopter - with an extra millimeter wave fire control radar at the top of its main rotor - the Z-8G transport helicopter and the Z-10 attack helicopter.
Crowds took photos with the helicopters, and were captivated by their flight performances on Thursday.
The Z-20 made its public debut at the National Day parade on October 1. At the 2019 China Helicopter Development Forum in Tianjin on Wednesday, Wang Xibao, the chief engineer of the Harbin Aircraft Industry Group under the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), told the Global Times that it is "of an advanced level in the 21st century."
"It uses technologies that are considered advanced in the world, including the active vibration control, fly-by-wire, low-noise rotor design and high performance rotor aerodynamic design," Wang said.
Li Linhua, the chief technology expert at the China Helicopter Research and Development Institute of the AVIC, said that during its development, many technological innovations were applied. Li also noted that only a few countries have helicopters with advanced fly-by-wire technology.
The Z-20 was entirely made in China, Chen Guang, a vice general manager of AVICOPTER, the helicopter branch of AVIC, told the Global Times.
As China's latest utility helicopter, the Z-20 will operate in plateaus, Chen said, noting that despite the lack of oxygen in high-altitude areas, the homemade engine is powerful enough, thanks to technological breakthroughs.
The Z-20 will contribute to China's future helicopter development as new models can learn from its advanced technologies, Chen said.
The craftsmanship of the helicopter's fuselage is excellent, as the surface seems smooth even at its joints. The large cockpit windows take up over half of the space of the aircraft's nose, with two extra windows on the floor of the cockpit, giving pilots a very wide view, the Global Times reporters observed on Wednesday.
Traditional, complicated dashboards are not found in the cockpit. Instead, the control panels use multifunctional screens. The helicopter's interior is wide and can store more equipment.
The Z-20 is a medium-lift utility helicopter that can adapt to different terrains and weathers, and can be used on missions involving personnel and cargo transport, search and rescue, reconnaissance and anti-submarine operations, experts said.