J-10 B and P.A.F
|J-10 in P.A.F colors|
Pakistan Air Force aka P.A.F is one of the worlds best air force. Well capable to defend its homeland P.A.F pilots are respected all over the world. Its current inventory contains air crafts of U.S and Chinese origin whereas the French Mirage retired this year. With the F-7 and Mirage gone ground P.A.F is looking forward to J-10, JF-17 and F-16 as its future combat air crafts. In late February 2006 the President of Pakistan Pervez Musharraf toured the JF-17 and J-10 production facilities in China during which P.A.F was offered J-10 by Chinese govt as the future part of P.A.F and the purchase of 36 J-10 air crafts modified according to the requirements of P.A.F was approved on 12 April 2006.
Export version to the Pakistan would be called FC-20(J-10B). P.A.F plans to purchase 36 to 100 FC-20 air crafts. China will start exporting FC-20s to Pakistan from 2014 to 2015 period . FC-20 is going to be equipped with :
(1) Increased radar absorbent material
(2) Increased composites
(3) New generation avionics
(5) Divert less supersonic inlet (DSI)
(6) Infrared search and track (IRST)
(7) Upgraded WS-10B engine
FC-20 prototype has passed all of its technical and aerial tests, proven its IFR capabilities and will be coming to the P.A.F with an advanced Chinese engine which will undergo serial production in 2013. There are only minor delays in supposed variant of WS-10 which has been tossed, is currently being tested. Airframe is made with more composite materials and the payload has increased. Also CFTs have been successfully tested and will also be a part of the initial 36 FC-20 package which will come with air to ground and air to air munitions such as new P.L.A.A.F Ramjet and of course SD-10. FC-20 is coming with ToT and there will be maintenance facilities and also some production capabilities which will keep this bird in air for atleast 30 years.
It has also been confirmed that FC-20 is not J-10A and China will be taking a MLU close to FC-20 standards in about 10 years when the P.L.A.A.F will have seriously ramped up J-10 production as they want in ideal terms atleast 600 J-10B flying and all their old J-10A will have undergone the same upgrade as P.A.Fs FC-20 except for certain Western components which the P.A.F will supposedly obtain.
Also the radar was decided to be high performing PESA than AESA which makes sense as these would increase the cost of each fighter by atleast 20-25%. There will already be Chinese AWACS providing long range coverage. Pakistan is not the size of US or Russia so the P.A.F will 99% not get AESA.
It is supposedly going to be marketed against Rafale, Typhoon and other Western 4.5 generation fighters in a way which China says it has not done before and many air forces who would have bought MiG or Lockheed will get J-10A export variants. P.A.F and P.L.A.A.F will be the only nations flying the J-10B for foreseeable future.