Why Chinese J-20 Fighter Jets Pose A Direct Threat to India, Japan and Vietnam?

Why the J-20 Fighter Jets of China pose a threat to countries like India, Japan and Vietnam? While the Indian Air Force reemphasised the need for Rafale fighter jets, meanwhile China has accomplished a breakthrough in its J-20 Fighter Jet programme by developing and fixing flaws in its own indigenous engine. With this development, China joins the elite list of nations to have developed its own jet engines.

While China has developed a variety of indigenous fighter jet, the country has struggled to master the development of reliable engines that can match the US, French and Russian counterparts.

Earlier, Chinese engines had a reputation to have operating cycles serving only hundreds of hours before requiring complete overhaul compared with Western engines which could operate way beyond the Chinese engines.

Thus, a number of surviving aircraft of the Chinese Airforce use engines imported from Russia or developed in assistance with them. These fighter jets include the JF-17 fighter, which uses the RD-33 engine used on Russia’s MiG-29, and the J-10, which uses variants of the Russian AL-31 family.

The Indian defence establishment is familiar with both RD-33 and AL-31 engines, the former is used by the MiG-29s in service with the Indian Air Force and Navy, while the AL-31 powers the SU-30MKI fighter.

Even as the Indian Air Force reiterated the necessity of the Rafale fighter deal, China, on the other hand, has achieved a breakthrough in its J-20 stealth fighter programme by ironing out flaws in its indigenous engine.

This development could assist China to mass produce J-20 fighter jets without foreign assistance which could pose a direct threat to countries like India, Japan Vietnam besides the western block led by the US.

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