Tuesday, March 26, 2013

J-20 Captive Carries Short Range (?) Missiles

Note.  Its an external mount.  Not terribly stealthy.

Better pix now.  You get to see the internal bay to some extent.

Hat tip China Defense Blog.


mithril said...

it's not an external mount, it is stored internally. the fighter does seem to have a unique feature, in that the hatch for the side missile bay has small ports, so that it can close while the launch rail is extended. presumably this is an attempt to preserve stealth when firing. the Short Range AAM's china has available require a missile seeker lock before firing, and have a fairly narrow seeker view. this means the missile will need to be positioned outside the bay for some time before firing. by letting the bay door close while the missile is held outside the bay, the radar signature can stay reduced compared to when the bay door is open, and the missile can still be employed. rather clever.

on the F-22, and presumably the PAK-FA, the same restriction was solved by developing missiles with wireless computer links so that the missile can be ejected and then lock on after launch, with sensors on the aircraft providing the targeting information until the missile itself locks on. it seems likely that china has not obtained this ability with its AAM's yet, given the unique feature of the J-20's bays.

Will Baird said...

Already acknowledged with the strike that there's an internal bay. :)