A J-31 fighter in test flight. (Photo/Screenshot)
Recently, pictures of the improved edition of China's stealth fighter J-31 were posted online, indicating a new stage of development for the aircraft. However, Chinese military expert Yin Zhuo told CCTV that it would still be some time before the design is finalized.
The J-31 is a fourth-generation fighter developed by China. It completed its first test flight on Oct. 31, 2012. With the development of the new model, China became the second country testing two models of fourth-generation flights at the same time, after only the U.S.
Compared with the earlier model, exhibited at Airshow China 2014, the improved version has a more aerodynamic design and an expanded weapons bay. Yin said five to seven prototypes are usually tested before a design is finalized.
Yin believes it is possible for the J-31 to be deployed on aircraft carriers in the future, saying that the aircraft's capability to carry out sea and land attacks would be a major asset for carriers.