China’s J-16 multi-role fighter jet is flawless and is much superior to other similar aircraft including, the Su-30, revealed a pilot who has experience flying it as well as other types of aircraft.
The J-16 has been a frequent flyer near the Taiwan Straits and has also been deployed to safeguard China’s western borders. Analysts said on Wednesday that the fighter jet is one of China’s core elements of air defense forces.
“In terms of performance, the J-16 is a superior to all types of aircraft I have flown. Speaking of the control capacity of the aircraft, the J-16 is a 3.5 generation plane with huge breakthroughs in radar and fire control systems in comparison with previous aircraft, said Wang Songxi, a flying instructor at the People’s Liberation Army Northern Theater Command Air Force, during an interview with China Central Television (CCTV) on Tuesday.
The J-16 has no flaws, because it is equipped with many types of weapons and can operate under all weather conditions, Wang said.
Explaining the strong combat capabilities of the J-16, Wang drew some comparisons with other well-known aircraft.
Normal people usually can’t tell the difference between a J-16 and a Su-30 from their appearance, but many things are difference from the inside, Wang said, noting that there is a gap that makes the J-16 a generation more advanced than the Su-30.
Recalling a training dogfight with China’s other 3.5 generation fighter jet, the J-10C, in 2020, Wang said that the J-16 and the J-10C had to call it a draw, but Wang felt that the J-16 had the upper hand because it has two engines and two pilots, while the J-10C only has one engine and one pilot.
Wang said he once had a chance to fly the JL-10 trainer jet and conduct ground attack exercise with rocket projectiles with remarkable results. When compared with the JL-10, the J-16’s land attack capability is even stronger, Wang said.
The J-16 has also been improved for better stealth capability, as Jiang Jiaji, the first pilot to win the PLA’s Golden Helmet competition three times, told CCTV in early 2019. He mentioned that the J-16 is now covered with silver-gray painting which makes it less visible to the naked eye and electromagnetic devices.
Fu Qianshao, a Chinese military aviation expert, told the Global Times that the aerodynamic design of the J-16 stresses maneuverability rather than stealth but the coating can make it more difficult to detect.
Since September 2020, the J-16 has become a frequent participant of PLA’s routine exercises near the Taiwan Straits, according to Taiwan island’s defense authorities. The J-16 is also deployed by the PLA Western Theater Command in a move to better safeguard China’s territorial integrity in the western regions.
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