‘Not a pound for air-to-ground’: Inside the J-20 weapons bay

UPDATE: Stand down! Looks like this one is more of a toy than a representative model. Apologies for the rush to judgment!J20 weapons bay.jpgIt appears the Chengdu J-20 may be an eight-shooter: six PL-12s in the main internal bay and one PL-9 in each of two side weapon bays. In non-stealthy mode, the J-20 may also carry more air to air or air-to-ground weapons on external hard points.

It is hard to judge definitively from this photo of a scale model, but there doesn’t appear to be room for air-to-surface missiles like the bulky YJ-12 or smart bombs inside the internal bays.

Is this evidence to support the theory that the J-20 is designed to perform as a stealthy air-to-air interceptor, or is there still reason to believe the aircraft could swing-role into a long-range penetrator?


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11 Responses to ‘Not a pound for air-to-ground’: Inside the J-20 weapons bay

  1. John S. 23 July, 2011 at 11:48 pm #

    Judging by the photograph and the angles, I’d say there’s eight PL-12s in the main bay, four on each side.

  2. RickJoe 24 July, 2011 at 2:48 am #

    J-20 is basically an F-22 with longer legs. It can hold chinese JDAM and SDB equivalents along with its standard air dominance weapons (not PL-9 and PL-12 incidentally). Besides it’s only a cruddy model, we can’t expect accuracy.

    Also why is it people keep thinking this aircraft is dedicated strike or interceptor? Clearly it’s optimized for air superiority and long range.

  3. Moose 24 July, 2011 at 6:57 am #

    Actually I think it’s 7. Looks like a single large bay with an odd number of PL-12s, including one missile on centerline.

    Then again, it’s only a model.

  4. puppethead 24 July, 2011 at 2:21 pm #

    Comparing the distances between the outer missiles’ noses and the door hinge lines, I’d say that 6 MRAAMs is all you’re gonna fit.

  5. sferrin 24 July, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    Looking at those “PL-12s” they look smaller than the PL-9s. My guess is something is amiss here. Notice the mid-body fin interference there as well?

  6. TLAM Strike 24 July, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

    This is a kitbash of a commercial 1/144 scale Dragon Models diecast model J-20 and a 1/72 scale IR AAM. Don’t take it seriously as Dragon Models is not the most accurate model manufacturer.

    Some photos of the J-20s from Dragon and another manufacturer here:

  7. pat 24 July, 2011 at 8:21 pm #

    Exactly what is the source of this model? It looks like it was built by an enthusuastic modeler, and not as an official scale representation.

  8. sferrin 25 July, 2011 at 12:00 am #

    Looks like somebody might have got burned by a kitbash. :-)

  9. OT Wag 25 July, 2011 at 3:23 am #

    It’s speculative writing based on a scale model, and a short one at that. No need for too much analysis in the comments. It was nice, however, to see some not take it as far Solomon on his blog. It’s almost as if Trimble kicked his puppy.

  10. Gigi 25 July, 2011 at 4:40 am #

    I always like the idea on the J20 being the long-range penetrator. There’re political reasons behind such design and its potential functions. Let’s say; even with the lamest configuration available and the J-20 can only manage to carry one precision guided weapon but still keeping its promised stealthy capabilties. Then the game theories of the pacific will have to change.What if it penetrate the air space of Taiwan time and time again? That means that the Chinese have had secure the dominate role in the region and the U.S. must back off(On the table, somewhat). And what happens if it can reach Guam and without being detected? It’s got the potential to settle some overly-due disputes. ( Again, on the table)

  11. Stephen Trimble 25 July, 2011 at 5:37 am #

    Well, you win some, and you lose some — especially when cruising the Chinese blogs. I appreciate getting the record straight., so thanks for all of your input.

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