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Chinese J-31 stealth Fighter Spotted In Zhuhai Ahead of Air Show

Photos of  China’s latest stealth fighter 
landing in the southern city of Zhuhai have revived speculation that the
jet will be publicly unveiled for the first time at an air show there
next month.

The unconfirmed photos,
first published on a military enthusiasts’ forum, show a fighter jet
landing in Zhuhai, Guangdong province earlier this week with the same
markings as previous leaked photos of the Shenyang J-31 aircraft.

 China's stealth fighter J-31
 China’s stealth fighter J-31

 The Shenyang Aircraft Corporation is listed as an exhibitor
at the 10th annual China International Aviation and Aerospace
Exhibition, which begins on November 11 in Zhuhai, but a spokesman for
the air show would neither confirm nor deny that the J-31 will be
unveiled at the event.

The stealth fighter, which has been in development for a number of years and made its maiden flight in October 2012, is a twin-engine jet that military analysts said could potentially fly missions from an aircraft carrier.

In August, the Shanghai-based Jiefang Daily reported that China’s aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, will house 36 aircraft, including 24 Shenyang J-15 fighters.

“The overall line-up certainly looks plausible, as the mix of
helicopters and fighters is similar to how the Russians outfit their
example of this carrier,” Roger Cliff, a senior fellow with the Asia
Security Initiative at the Atlantic Council, told Defence News.

China's stealth fighter J-31
China’s stealth fighter J-31

“The striking thing about this carrier and aircraft line-up
is that every single item is based on a foreign system. The Liaoning is a
Russian-built ship fitted out with Chinese systems. The helicopters are
based on Eurocopter designs. And the J-15 fighters are based on the
Russian Su-33 design.”

Andrei Chang, editor-in-chief of the Canada-based Kanwa Asian Defence Monthly, told the South China Morning Post
in 2012 that as well as borrowing features from Russian aircraft, the
J-31 provided further evidence that Shenyang jets were proving
increasingly adept at cloning US planes.

China's stealth fighter J-31
China’s stealth fighter J-31

Chang said the J-31 appears to have borrowed features from
the US Air Force’s twin-engine F-22 and the US Navy’s single-engine

The J-31
isn’t the only new Chinese aircraft to be spotted this month. Photos of
the larger fourth-generation stealth fighter J-20, Airborne Early
Warning and Control System aircraft KJ-500 and Y-20 large military
, reportedly conducting test flights, were published on a popular military forum on Saturday.

China's stealth fighter J-31
China’s stealth fighter J-31