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JF-17 Thunder (One)

Saturday, May 5, 2012

JF-17 Thunder Wallpaper 1
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The PAC JF-17 Thunder is a light-weight, single-engine, multi-role combat aircraft developed jointly by the Chengdu Aircraft Industries Corporation (CAC) of China, the Pakistan Air Force and the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC). Its designation "JF-17 Thunder Wallpaper 1" by Pakistan is short for "Joint Fighter-17", while the designation "FC-1 Xiaolong" by China means "Fighter China-1 Fierce Dragon". The JF-17 was primarily developed to meet Pakistan Air Force's (PAF) requirement of the for an affordable,[9] modern multi-role combat aircraft as a replacement for its large fleet of Dassault Mirage III/5 fighters, Nanchang A-5 bombers, and Chengdu F-7 interceptors. It was also to have export potential as a cost-effective and competitive alternative to significantly more expensive Western fighters. In 1999, Pakistan and China signed the contract to jointly develop the FC-1/Super 7. Initial difficulties in acquiring an avionics and radar package from Europe led to many problems, which was solved in 2001, when design of the airframe was "de-coupled" from the avionics. In 2003, the maiden flight of the first prototype occurred in China. The Pakistani designation "Super-7", meanwhile, were replaced with "JF-17". Later test flights with a modified design occurred in 2006. Deliveries to the PAF for further flight testing and evaluation began in 2007 and the aircraft's first public aerial display took place that year in Islamabad. The PAF officially inducted its first JF-17 squadron, No. 26 Squadron, on 18 February 2010 with fourteen aircraft. The JF-17 is expected to cost approximately US$15 million per unit and the PAF has a confirmed order for 150 JF-17s, which may increase to 250 aircraft. Azerbaijan and Zimbabwe had placed orders for the aircraft while Bangladesh, Myanmar, Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, Sri Lanka and Algeria showed interest. By 1989, Pakistan had abandoned Project Sabre II, a design study involving Grumman and China to re-design and upgrade the Chengdu F-7, due to economic sanctions by the U.S. In the same year, China and Grumman started a new design study to develop the Super 7, another re-designed Chengdu F-7. Grumman left the project when sanctions were placed on China following the political fallout from the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests. After Grumman left the Chengdu Super 7, the Fighter China project was launched in 1991. Pakistan, meanwhile, required a new fighter to replace its fleet of Dassault Mirage III/5s, Chengdu F-7s, and Nanchang A-5s. JF-17 Thunder Wallpaper 1. In 1995, Pakistan and China signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for joint design and development of a new fighter, and over the next few years, the two countries worked out the project details. In June 1995, Mikoyan joined the project to provide "design support" and had "seconded a team of engineers to CAC." In October 1995, it was reported that Pakistan was to select a Western company by the end of the year to provide and integrate the avionics for FC-1, which was expected to go into production by 1999. The avionics were stated to include radars, INSs, HUDs and MFDs. Competing for the contracts were Thomson-CSF with a variant of the RDY radar, Sagem with avionics similar to those used in the ROSE upgrade project and GEC-Marconi with its new Blue Hawk radar, but FIAR (now SELEX Galileo) was expected to win the radar contract with the Grifo S7 because the company had earlier ties with the PAF. In mid-February 1998, Pakistan and China signed a letter of intent covering airframe development. Russia's Klimov offered a variant of the RD-33 turbofan engine to power the fighter. In April 1999, South Africa's Denel offered to arm the PAF's Super 7 with the T-darter beyond-visual-range (BVR) air-to-air missile (AAM), rather than the R-Darter as reported previously. In June 1999, the contract to jointly develop and produce the Chengdu FC-1/Super 7 was signed. The project was to be a 50–50 partnership with the air forces of both countries being committed to ordering the fighter. After GEC-Marconi had abandoned the bidding to supply an integrated avionics suite, FIAR and Thomson-CSF proposed a number of avionics suites based on the Grifo S7 and RC400 radars, respectively despite previously hoping to use the PAF's Super 7 to launch its new Blue Hawk radar. Due to sanctions placed on Pakistan after the country's 1998 nuclear tests, design work progressed very slowly over the next 18 months, preventing delivery of the Western avionics to the PAF. JF-17 Thunder Wallpaper 1
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