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China’s New Two-Seat J-20: Trainer or Manned-Unmanned Teaming Platform?

November 2, 2021

From the Air Force Magazine website

A short video of a Chengdu J-20 Mighty Dragon that circulated on the internet October 28 shows a taxiing new two-seat version of the stealth fighter, still in primer and untreated composite. It could indicate at least a trainer version of the airplane or possibly China’s future approach to manned-unmanned air combat teaming.

China has hinted at the existence of a two-seat J-20—possibly known as the J-20B or J-20S—in social media videos and trade show presentations, but the new images, if authentic, indicate the airplane has reached the fabrication stage. China has leaked or allowed videos to be circulated of Mighty Dragons taxiing at the same test facility since the J-20’s existence was first revealed during former Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ visit to that country in 2011.

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