The pair of twin-engine J-20s that put on a show for the crowds at Airshow China in the southern city of Zhuhai on Tuesday were equipped with the WS-10 engine. The WS-10 was developed by the People’s Liberation Army Air Force to replace Russian engines that featured in early versions of the J-20.
But Tuesday marked the first time the homemade jets were revealed to the Chinese public and overseas spectators.
In its June report, Global Times said the use of domestic engines showed that “the J-20 is becoming more and more technically mature.”
“More PLA units based in different parts of the country are expected to receive more J-20s, greatly improving the ability of the PLA air force to protect sovereignty, airspace and development interests of the homeland, “the report said, citing an anonymous military expert.
However, US officials have long said the J-20 cannot compete with US stealth fighters.
In 2016, General David Goldfein, then Chief of Staff of the US Air Force, said the technology of the J-20 was more like that of the F-117A, the first stealth jets introduced by the states. United in 1983 and withdrawn in 2008.
CNN’s Shawn Deng contributed to this report.