Warplanes: China Teaches Old Dogs New Tricks


July 15, 2010: It was believed that China was retiring its 200 Q-5 attack aircraft over the last five years. But some have been spotted carrying a television guided smart bomb (a half ton KAB-500Kr). This is a late cold war Russian weapon which the Chinese copied. Equipping the Q-5 to carry this weapon, and GPS guided bombs (which the Chinese recently introduced) could extend the lives of the Q-5s.

Based on the Russian MiG-19, the 11.8 ton Q-5 has two engines and thus does not have the nose air intake characteristic of the early MiG jet fighters. China has produced over a thousand Q-5s since 1969. The single seat Q-5 is armed with two 23mm autocannon and can carry two tons of bombs and missiles, The navy has been using its Q-5s to carry anti-ship missiles. The Chinese have been upgrading the Q-5 over the years, and in the early 1990s began adding a lot of modern electronics (HUD, laser rangefinder) and even developed a version able to deliver laser and GPS guided bombs. One development version had a targeting pod. It was believed that these smart bomb versions were only experimental. Maybe they still are, but several have been seen carrying smart bombs at bases for regular, not experimental, aircraft.



Article Archive

Warplanes: Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close