70th Anniversary – PLAAF Claims Third Generation Air Force with Fourth Generation Backbone | Security Risks Asia Made with Humane Club

70th Anniversary – PLAAF Claims Third Generation Air Force with Fourth Generation Backbone

Published Nov 29, 2019
Updated Feb 18, 2020

Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), attended an event to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force.

Xi said the PLA Air Force stand at a new historical point. “We must bear in mind the initial mission, carry forward the glorious tradition, be brave in innovation and transcendence, and s

 Xi Jinping called for efforts to fully build the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force into a world-class air force.

 Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), made the requirement while attending an event celebrating the 70th founding anniversary of the PLA Air Force in the northern outskirts of Beijing.

On the anniversary it was stated that symbolic of the country’s military strength, the air force has taken part in wars, when needed, to ensure victory. And during peacetime, it mainly safeguards China’s territorial airspace while also dealing with non-traditional security threats.

 PLAAF is accelerating the transition of its tasks from territorial air defense to both offensive and defensive operations, and constantly improves its capabilities for strategic early warning, air strikes, air and missile defense, information warfare countermeasures, airborne operations, strategic projection, and integrated support.

Fixed Wing Aircraft

With J-10B /C fighter jet, J-16multirole fighter, J-20stealth fighter, Y-20 heavy transport aircraft , H-6K bombers, KJ-500 early warning aircraft and other new indigenous aircraft being commissioned one after another, the PLAAF aviation force has initially formed an integrated force structure with the third-generation aircraft as its main body and the fourth-generation aircraft as its backbone, covering early warning aircraft, fighter jets, bomber aircraft, reconnaissance aircraft and transport aircraft.

In recent years, the PLAAF aviation force has continuously advanced its capabilities in strategic early warning, air strikes and strategic projection. The J-20 fighter jets have been deployed in real combat training at sea to further enhance their comprehensive combat capability. The paratroopers boarded the Y-20 large strategic transport aircraft and conducted airdrop mission, which marks a major step forward in strategic delivery capability. China unveiled its new generation aircraft such as KJ-500 early warning aircraft, H-6N long-range strategic bomber in the National Day military parade on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). All these achievements have demonstrated that the PLAAF aviation force is becoming the landmark power of the strategic transformation of the PLAAF.

Driven by the PLAAF strategic transformation, the aviation force is constantly honing its combat training capability. The PLAAF is continuously deepening joint training exercises with its counterparts such as Russia, Pakistan, and Thailand, etc. It has continuously organized such competitive assessment dubbed as Golden Helmet and Gold Darts, regular SOS combat exercises such as Red Sword, as well as systematic and practical training exercises. The proportion and frequency of actual combat training has been gradually increased, and tactical confrontation training at high seas and on the plateau has also been organized on a regular basis.

In the new era, the PLAAF aviation force has conducted patrols in areas over the East China Sea, the South China Sea, the West Pacific and around the Taiwan island, and carried out extending high-sea training in a regular, systematic and practical manner. In May 2018, the PLAAF aviation force dispatched bombers and reconnaissance aircraft to fly around the Taiwan island in both directions, which was a breakthrough in mode of cruising around the island. In July this year, the PLAAF and Russian air force conducted joint air strategic patrol for the first time, further enhancing their strategic coordination and joint operational capability.

Since China announced its establishment of the East China Sea air defense identification zone (ADIZ), the PLAAF aviation force has been tasked with routine control, flying hundreds of combat sorties every year.

PLAAF Training Aircraft Capability

China’s full set of domestically developed basic, intermediate and advanced trainer jets put on their first joint flight performance, showcasing the Chinese military’s capability to constantly develop pilots for the country’s advanced warplanes including the J-20.  

This is the first time the three types of trainers, all developed by the Hongdu company, have flown together in public, the company said, noting that the aircraft have built a three-level pilot development mechanism for the Chinese Air Force and Navy’s aviation troops, and will contribute to the Chinese military as the military gains more combat capabilities.

Pilot cadets can start learning flying from the CJ-6, then the more sophisticated K-8 and graduate when mastering the L-15, an anonymous military expert told the Global Times on Sunday.

The three trainers are designed so cadets could gradually understand how an aircraft works, how to control and make maneuvers and then apply the techniques in combat, the expert said.

 A full set of trainers can help China constantly develop pilots as China builds more fourth and fifth generation fighter jets, the anonymous expert said, noting that the new L-15 could play important roles in developing pilots for the J-20, China’s most advanced fighter jet, and other advanced fighter jets, as it is equipped with many advanced technologies that other trainers do not.

 As a result, the three trainers have become popular on the international market claims China Military Online

[Source China Military Online].

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