Skip to comments.Unmanned J-6 fighter jets put on Fujian air base
Posted on 01/08/2013 12:12:44 AM PST by sukhoi-30mki
Unmanned J-6 fighter jets put on Fujian air base
Hong Kong, Jan. 7 (CNA) A large number of old J-6 fighter jets that have been converted into unmanned attack aircraft are being stationed at Liancheng Air Base in Fujian province, according to the latest issue of Kanwa Defense Review.
China's Huanqiu.com cited the Canadian online magazine as saying that satellite photos taken on July 31, 2011 showed there were at least 55 of the J-6 aircraft on the base.
The magazine said the air base most likely has more J-6s than any other base in Fujian, showing that the Chinese Air Force attaches great importance to the capabilities of the unmanned fighter.
Reports said the J-6, the Chinese-built version of the Soviet MiG-19 "Farmer" fighter aircraft, was produced by Shengyang Aircraft Corp. and formed the backbone of the Chinese Air Force in the 1960s and the 1970s.
The J-6 fleet was retired in the late 1990s. But because of the J-6s' maneuverability, high thrust-to-weight ratio, and light weight and their suitability for close-distance combat, the planes have since been converted into unmanned attack fighters.
I wonder if they don’t actually mean target drones. We don’t even have unmanned fighters in use.
I think these are basically cruise missles.
By the end of a second Obama term, I doubt we will have an operational nuclear capability and if we do, Obama would rather use it on us than any of his fellow thinkers.
They are decoys, meant to soak up lot of missiles and deplete our magazines.
Drones on the cheap?
Exactly. These are MiG-19s, people, a design that came out in the mid-1950s. Hugely outdated. Little range, since they didn’t want pilots to be able to defect in them. The only reason keeping them running, for anything, works, is because labor is so cheap for the Chinese. For now.
Thanks for posting
To US not a significant development but particularly to Taiwan, concernable.
No “volunteers” stupid enough to fly these old buggies? ;-)
Yep. Kamikaze drones.
I fear a showdown is coming with China—in the next six months there could be war. These people are not our friends and they see Obama as unwilling to act against Chinese interests. They might move on Japan, or Vietnam or Malaya. These could be used to trap a US Carrier and sink her—One carrier lost would—they think—have us put up the white flag. The Chinese don’t really know us very well. Ever wonder why they want the US disarmed? To keep the people from storming the White House and pulling Obama out if he tries any treason.
I don’t think so, at least in the near term. China knows Obama is pro-anything Communist. Why force him to act, when you can get much through his passivity?
Obama is fearless in the application of ruthless legal and legislative manipulation, but I believe he’s a complete coward when anything real is involved. He won’t fight anything risky or significant (not that I want a war), and the Chinese must know this.
Well, here is the answer to the AEGIS/Standard combination. Simply have a large number of cheap airframes vectoring in on the ships. Now, the defending position is simple - either a) shoot down the oncoming targets, or b) do nothing. For the first option, it will probably take two missiles fired per target based on past AEGIS engagements (e.g. the shooting of the Iranian airliner by the USS Vincennes). That means that each incoming target will soak two missiles. For the second option, doing nothing, there is the danger that the plane will do damage to the ship.
How does this play into Chinese strategy?
Well, the first wave would be comprised of these drones ...which would primarily be meant to soak in any and all available missiles (be they from ships or planes). A secondary objective would be to do actual damage, but the main goal is to act as a missile sieve. Once that is done, the second wave of incoming cruise missiles from bombers (the Chinese are getting more TU-22M bombers, a design that would be obsolete were it not for the fact that it carries supersonic cruise missiles) and aircraft, as well as from D-E submarines. That is the real threat, and in the crazy milieu brought about by the drones and partially depleted missile magazines, there is a great chance the second/third saturation wave will be successful.
Does this mean sunk ships? Not necessarily, although that could happen to an Arleigh Burke. But it will most probably mean some level of mobility kill looking at what happened to the USS Cole, and will most definitely mean a capability kill due to damage to sensors.
These are not target drones. They are a cheap way of ensuring that some of the bite from USN AEGIS capability is muted a tad, and hopefully (to the Chinese) muted sufficiently to ensure a higher success probability against USN assets in the area.
I would say that as it stands right now, the only US tactical assets that can operate with total impunity in the S.China Sea are the Virginia Class SSNs and the Ohio-based cruise-missile carrying SSGNs. Even the F-22 Raptor cannot operate in the area (not because it would be shot down, but because, based on a study by RAND, there would be so many targets that after the Raptor's finished all their missiles, there would be enough Chinese Sukhois left to shoot down the refueling planes, and the Raptors would run out of fuel eventually and crash in the sea).
What about Phalanx systems?
Using the Phalanx against modern supersonic missiles (not to mention the in-development hypersonic ones) would be tantamount to trying to slice raindrops with a knife. This is why the USN and other leading navies are replacing their gun-based Phalanx/Goal-keeper type R2D2 type systems with systems that are missile based (eg the ESSM and the Rolling Airframe Missile). Simply because the efficacy of gun-based systems against modern supersonic cruise missile threats is basically nil.
I don’t believe these Mig 21 drones are capable of Mach 2+ speeds.
Pardon me, Mig19 based drones.
The drones? No, the MiG 19s can’t go that fast. I meant the supersonic cruise missiles that have terminal closing speeds somewhere between sizzling fast and searing quick. All the drones do is soak up missiles. I doubt any ship will let a MiG 19 sized UCAV get close enough to be engaged with a Phalanx or Goalkeeper type gun-system ...something that big that close could be carrying something, could be manned, could have missiles ....it would definitely be shot at from quite some distance, since the risk of doing nothing is too great, hence it’s utility as a strategy for soaking Standard and ESSM missiles. This gives the follow-on waves of Moskits/Yakhonts/Klub/(insert favorite supersonic cruise missile type here) a far greater chance of success than it might have otherwise had. There was a wargame that was done where the person acting as red force was sinking AEGIS ships with speed boats. Got so bad they rebooted the thing and had him stop ‘being clever.’ There are threats out there, and while my money should be on the USN I am at the same time not naive to believe the US will always have the good fortune of always fighting stupid poor enemies. Someday it might fight clever rich enemies, and that is why out of the box thinking is important becAuse you can bet such an enemy will not be riding a camel praying hard to Allah to save him from jdams. Looking at Chinese military spending it is easy to see where it is geared.
I was only talking about the drones, the particular threat of which I think is overstated. Don’t believe they would overcome basic anti-air defense, let alone be engaged by AEGIS. More probably use would be against Taiwan, maybe? Hypersonic cruise missiles, whole different story. I appreciate the depth of your knowledge and intelligent posts.
They don’t need to go fast. They need to make abrupt turns to draw off interceptors. It’s easy to shoot down something coming in a straight line. An unmanned jet fighter can out maneuver a missile. It’s the “crow chasing the butterfly” principle.
We could do the same thing with old F-8, A-4 and F-86 airframes.