Swift win: Chinese military aircraft show links to Western technology

by Akhil Kadidal & Akshara Parakala

Two Chengdu J-20 stealth fighters perform during Airshow China 2022 at Zhuhai on 8 November. (Zhou Guoqiang/VCG via Getty Images)

China's development of military air platforms continues to show strong links to designs and concepts originating from the West.

During Airshow China 2022, 121 aircraft (including models) and 54 types of ground equipment were displayed by more than 740 companies worldwide, according to Chinese state-owned media. Out of this, 55% of exhibits were unveiled for the first time, according to the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC). The corporation added that 43 exhibits were domestically developed unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

In addition, about 50 aircraft and associated weapons and equipment displayed at the air show were developed by domestic industry and operated by the People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF), AVIC said.

Janes assessment of 14 technology demonstrators, in-service aircraft or models exhibited at the air show found design or capability similarities with platforms in other countries.

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Singapore Airshow 2024: Terrex s5 to receive MUM-T capabilities

by Akhil Kadidal

The Terrex s5 infantry fighting vehicle is likely to incorporate a small unmanned aerial vehicle as a MUM-T capability to assist with waypoint navigation. (Janes/Akhil Kadidal/ST Engineering)

A range of manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T) capabilities are being planned for Singapore's recently unveiled Terrex s5 infantry fighting vehicle (IFV).

The Terrex is an 8×8 IFV with six distinct operational roles such as a troop carrier, command vehicle, anti-tank guided-missile (ATGM) vehicle, fire-support vehicle, mortar vehicle, and an amphibious assault vehicle, according to information published by ST Engineering. The vehicle was unveiled during Singapore Airshow 2024, which is being held from 20 to 25 February.

An ST Engineering spokesperson told Janes during the show that a range of MUM-T capabilities will be added to the IFV. These include the integration of a capability to co-ordinate with autonomously operating unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and the new Taurus unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), which was also unveiled for the first time at the show.

“Tests have been conducted for autonomous operations after the Terrex s5 programme began two to three years ago,” the spokesperson said, adding that the IFV is being subject to multiple MUM-T-type mission scenario testing.

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Singapore Airshow 2024: Kawasaki progresses with KJ300 engine development

by Prasobh Narayanan

A full-scale Kawasaki KJ300 turbofan engine displayed at the Singapore Airshow 2024. (Janes/Prasobh Narayanan)

Japan's Kawasaki Heavy Industries displayed its KJ300 turbofan engine at the Singapore Airshow 2024 held from 20 to 25 February.

Speaking to Janes , a company official said the engine completed its high-altitude testing in 2023 at a test facility in Japan and further testing is under way.

The KJ300 is the latest addition to the KJ engine series developed by Kawasaki and is primarily intended for unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) applications. It is a small turbofan engine with a two-spool configuration that can generate a thrust of 3.58 kN (365 kgf) at sea-level static conditions.

The engine has a length of 950 mm and a diameter of 350 mm, and weighs 90 kg. It is of all-metal and metal-alloy construction.

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Hungary increases Gripen fleet

by Gareth Jennings

Hungary is to bring its Gripen fleet up to 18, with the addition of a further four aircraft announced on 23 February. (Janes/Patrick Allen)

Hungary is to increase the size of its fleet of Saab Gripen combat aircraft, with a deal announced on 23 February for an additional four airframes.

With 14 Gripen C/D aircraft having been leased from Sweden in 2001 and entering service in 2006, Saab has said that it has signed an agreement with the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) for four additional Gripen Cs for the Hungarian Air Force (HuAF).

“This order follows an amendment to the contract between [the] FMV and the Hungarian government signed in December 2001 regarding 14 Gripen C/D fighters for the Hungarian Air Force. The contract amendment for the four additional aircraft was signed by the Hungarian Ministry of Defence and FMV on 23 February. With this new contract amendment, Hungary will operate a total of 18 Gripen C/D aircraft to protect and defend the Hungarian and NATO airspace,” Saab said.

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