Air Transportation:China Less Way Behind

航空运输:中国直升机群落后

Date:2022-02-04 Source:strategypage By:strategypage Viewed:

January 31, 2022: The Chinese army currently has nearly a thousand helicopters. This includes 534 Attack/Recon helicopters and about 420 transports. This is up from 136 Attack/Recon and 210 transports in 2011.
2022年1月31日:中国军队目前拥有近千架直升机。其中包括534架攻击/侦察直升机和大约420架运输直升机。这比2011年的136架攻击/侦察和210架运输直升机有所增加。
 
The U.S. Army has nearly 4,000 helicopters, including 1,300 attack/reconnaissance helicopters, including about 800 AH-64 attack helicopters and over 500 OH-58C OH-58D observation helicopters, some of them armed. The army has been using helicopters since 1945, but the big expansion took place in the 1960s with the appearance of the gas-turbine powered UH-1 and AH-1. The heaviest use of these new models was during the Vietnam War, especially between 1965 and 1975. During this period the Americans developed effective tactics and the concept of large-scale airmobile operations. After Vietnam the army developed the aviation brigade, a standardized unit containing an efficient and proven mix of attack and transport helicopters. These helicopters provided essential transport for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
美国陆军拥有近4000架直升机,包括1300架攻击/侦察直升机,包括约800架AH-64攻击直升机和500多架OH-58C、OH-58D观察直升机,其中一些是武装直升机。陆军自1945年以来一直在使用直升机,但随着燃气轮机驱动的UH-1和AH-1的出现,大规模扩张发生在20世纪60年代。在越南战争期间,尤其是在1965年至1975年间,这些新型号的使用量最大。在此期间,美国人发展了有效的战术和大规模空中机动作战的概念。越南战争后,陆军发展了航空旅,这是一个标准化的部队,拥有高效且经过验证的攻击直升机和运输直升机组合。这些直升机为伊拉克和阿富汗战争提供了必要的运输工具。
 
China was late to the large-scale use of military helicopters. Initially China used a combination of Russian and French helicopters while they sought to develop the ability to manufacture their own helicopter engines.
中国在大规模使用军用直升机方面起步较晚。最初,中国使用俄罗斯和法国直升机的组合,同时他们寻求发展自己制造直升机发动机的能力。
 
The latest Chinese transport is a copy of the UH-60 and some aspects of the American AH-60 Battlehawk gunship variant. Battlehawk is used mainly by export customers. BattleHawk is basically a more advanced version of earlier efforts to add more and more weapons to UH-60s. That led to developing a stub wing kit and fire control system. With this a UH-60 could use rockets, guided missiles and autocannon pods. The U.S. Army also has UH-60 variants for EW (electronic warfare) and ELINT (Electronics Intelligence) and medevac (medical evacuation). The Chinese army is now expected to sample all of those variants and adopt some of them.
最新的中国运输直升机是UH-60和美国AH-60战鹰武装直升机改型的仿制品。战鹰主要用于出口客户。战鹰基本上是早期在UH-60上增加越来越多武器的更先进型号。这导致了一个短翼套件和消防系统的开发。有了这个,UH-60可以使用火箭、导弹和自动驾驶舱。美国陆军也有用于电子战(EW)、电子情报(ELINT)和医疗后送(medevac)的UH-60改型。中国军队现在预计将对所有这些改型进行抽样,并采用其中一些改型。


Z20
 
In 2018 China introduced the Z20, a competent copy of the American UH-60, which replaced the UH-1 in the 1980s while the AH-64 replaced the AH-1. China was able to purchase some S-70s, the civilian version of the UH-60, in the 1980s but that stopped after sanctions were imposed in 1989. Those sanctions remained and China had to rely on Russian helicopters and several attempts to develop their own.
2018年,中国推出了直-20,这是美国UH-60的合格仿制型,它在20世纪80年代取代了UH-1,而AH-64取代了AH-1。中国能够在20世纪80年代购买一些S-70,即UH-60的民用版本,但在1989年因西方封锁制裁后停止购买。这些制裁仍然存在,中国不得不依靠俄罗斯的直升机和多次尝试开发自己的直升机。
 
Chinese media described the Z20 as a helicopter with the same features and performance as the UH-60. China did not try to copy Russian designs because they recognized them as inferior to the American helicopters. Chinese dissatisfaction with Russian Mi-8/17 transports and earlier Chinese designs like the Z-8, based on the older French SA-321 helicopters, led to efforts to concentrate on American designs. Chinese manufacturers are relatively free to try anything and ignore foreign patents and copyrights, especially if they create something very useful. The Z20 was useful and China officially defends it as a unique Chinese development.
中国媒体将直-20描述为与UH-60具有相同功能和性能的直升机。中国没有试图复制俄罗斯的设计,因为他们认为它们不如美国的直升机。中国对俄罗斯的米-8/17运输机和基于较旧的法国SA-321直升机的直-8等中国早期设计的不满导致努力专注于美国设计。中国制造商可以相对自由地尝试任何东西,而忽略外国专利和版权,特别是如果他们创造了非常有用的东西。直-20很有用,中国官方将其视为独特的中国发展。
 
The U.S. Army currently has about 2,000 UH-60s and is upgrading the force with the new "M" model. So far, over 4,000 UH-60/SH60s (and variants) have been built. The UH-60 was introduced in 1979. The 11 ton UH-60M can carry 14 troops, or 1.1 tons of cargo internally, or four tons slung underneath. Cruise speed is 278 kilometers an hour. Max endurance is two hours, although most sorties last 90 minutes or less. Max altitude is 5,790 meters (19,000 feet).
美国陆军目前拥有大约2,000架UH-60,并正在使用新的“M”型号升级部队。到目前为止,已经制造了超过4,000架UH-60/SH60(和改型)。UH-60于1979年推出。11吨的UH-60M可搭载14名士兵,或内部装载1.1吨货物,或在下方悬挂4吨。巡航速度为每小时278公里。最长续航时间为2小时,尽管大多数出击持续90分钟或更短。最大海拔高度为5,790米(19,000英尺)。
 
The Z-20 is the same weight, size and shape as the UH-60 and S-70. The Z-20 also has two engines and can carry up to fifteen troops or max payload of five tons of cargo. The Z-20 can also carry up to four tons via a sling underneath. The Z-20 has different electronics and different engines. Helicopter engines, like high-performance jet engines, have long been a weak link for China, which has yet to produce models that are comparable with Western designs. For helicopters, China has obtained European models and has been able to build some of those under license and use them on non-military helicopters. The Z-20 is also using one of the latest Chinese helicopter engine designs, the WZ-10 and there are plans to install more powerful Chinese helicopter engines in the Z20 as those engines become available. Ultimately the Chinese want to create a copy of the UH-60 that is more advanced than the original.
直-20的重量、尺寸和形状与UH-60和S-70相同。直-20也有两台发动机,最多可搭载15名士兵或5吨货物的最大有效载荷。直-20还可以通过下方的吊索挂载多达4吨。直-20具有不同的电子设备和不同的发动机。直升机发动机和高性能喷气发动机一样,长期以来一直是中国的薄弱环节,中国还没有生产出可以与西方设计相媲美的机型。对于直升机,中国已经获得了欧洲型号,并且已经能够制造一些获得许可的型号并将其用于非军用直升机。直-20还使用了最新的中国直升机发动机设计之一,即武直-10,并且计划在直-20中安装更强大的中国直升机发动机,因为这些发动机可用。最终,中国想要制造比原版更先进的UH-60的仿制品。
 
The UH-60 Blackhawk and SH-60 Seahawk have been the standard American transport and utility helicopter since the 1980s. China has also developed a few navy versions of the Z20.
自20世纪80年代以来,UH-60黑鹰和SH-60海鹰一直是美国标准的运输和多用途直升机。中国还开发了一些海军版本的直-20。


Z8
 
While the Z20 is said to be in mass production it will be years before it replaces the unpopular Z8, much less the more popular, and familiar, Russian Mi-8/17. The manufacturer of the 13-ton Z8s revised that helicopter to make it more competitive with the Z20. That has resulted in the much-improved 13-ton Z18, but neither the Z-8 or Z-18 were as effective as the Z20. The Z20 has a competitive edge because of successfully copying the UH-60, which is seen as the gold standard for combat proven tactical transport helicopters.
虽然直-20据说正在量产,但它要取代不受欢迎的直-8还需要几年时间,更不用说更受欢迎和熟悉的俄罗斯米-8/17了。13吨直-8的制造商对该直升机进行了改进,使其与直-20更具竞争力。这导致了13吨大幅改进的直-18,但直-8或直-18都不如直-20有效。直-20之所以具有竞争优势,是因为它成功地复制了UH-60,这被视为经战斗验证的战术运输直升机的黄金标准。
 
Chinese efforts to develop an attack helicopter have been more difficult. Their first effort was the Z-9, which was introduced in 1994 and based on the French AS-365, which China imported and built locally for civilian users. The Z9 used a Chinese engine and was smaller (at 4.9 tons) than the AH-64 and more similar to the AH-1, which is still in use.
中国研发攻击直升机的努力更加困难。他们的第一个努力是直-9,它是在1994年推出的,以法国AS-365为基础,中国进口并在当地为民用用户制造。直-9使用中国发动机,比AH-64小(4.9吨),与仍在使用的AH-1更相似。


Z-10
 
In 2012 China introduced the 7-ton Z-10 gunship, as well as the 4.2-ton Z-19 armed recon helicopter. This was more similar to the original 4.3-ton AH-1 gunship of the 1960s. The AH-1 was upgraded over the years into the twin-engine 8.3-ton AH-1Z, which the U.S. Marines use and earlier twin-engine models that were exported to many countries. The most capable gunship is the 10.4-ton AH-64, which first appeared in the early 1980s. Since then, improved models have appeared and about 2,500 have been built so far. This is the most popular gunship export, with sixteen countries using them.
2012年,中国推出了7吨级直-10武装直升机,以及4.2吨级直-19武装侦察直升机。这与20世纪60年代最初的4.3吨AH-1型武装直升机更为相似。多年来,AH-1升级为双发动机8.3吨AH-1Z,美国海军陆战队使用该型号以及出口到许多国家的早期双发动机型号。最有能力的武装直升机是10.4吨重的AH-64,它最早出现在20世纪80年代初。从那时起,出现了改进的型号,到目前为止已经制造了大约2500架。这是最受欢迎的外销武装直升机,有16个国家在使用它们。
 
China still buys some Russian Mi-17 transports and the Z-20 is expected to eventually replace it. Right now, China only has about 30 Z-20s and it will be several years before mass-production begins. China needs a more powerful engine for the Z-20 and is experimenting with various Chinese made electronic features for flight control and navigation. China takes its time with new tech and will often take a decade or more before starting mass production.
中国仍在购买一些俄罗斯的米-17运输机,预计直-20最终将取代它。目前,中国只有大约30架直-20,量产还需要几年时间。中国需要为直-20配备更强大的发动机,并正在试验各种中国制造的用于飞行控制和导航的电子功能。中国在新技术上花时间,通常需要十年或更长时间才能开始大规模生产。
 
China has still not come up with a medium-lift helicopter design, like the American CH-47. They will, eventually, when they have the tech to make it work. China is patient and this is a virtue. They could build a crude copy of the CH-47 that would not be worth developing further.
中国还没有拿出像美国CH-47那样的中型直升机设计。最终,当他们拥有让它发挥作用的技术时,他们会的。中国有耐心,这是一种美德。他们可以制造一个不值得进一步开发的CH-47的粗制版。
 
The Z20 was described as ready for service in 2018 and “entering service” in 2019. But it was not until 2020 that Z20s were seen in use by Chinese troops of the 161st Air-Assault Brigade in a regular training exercise. By the end of 2020 the Z20s were seen in several new variants that copied existing American variants.
直-20被描述为在2018年准备就绪,并在2019年“投入使用”。但直到2020年,第161空中突击旅的中国军队才在一次常规训练演习中看到直-20的使用。到2020年底,直-20出现在几个新的改型中,这些改型复制了现有的美国改型。
 
All this Chinese interest in tactical transport helicopters is quite recent. It was only in 2017 that the first two Air-Assault Brigades were created by converting Light Helicopter Brigades to a western style air assault brigade equipped with transport and gunship helicopters. The army also has eleven aviation brigades that provide helicopter support to any units in one of the thirteen Group Armies the brigade is assigned to. The aviation brigade is a new concept for the Chinese army, which began organizing them in 2009. These were based on the organization and equipment of the current American Army Aviation Brigades. The U.S. Army developed helicopter-heavy aviation brigades during the 1960s and the first one was organized in Vietnam. Since then, the aviation brigades have been a standard feature of the U.S. Army.
中国对战术运输直升机的所有兴趣都是最近才出现的。直到2017年,通过将轻型直升机旅转变为配备运输和武装直升机的西式空中突击旅,才创建了前两个空中突击旅。陆军还拥有11个航空旅,为该旅所属的13个集团军之一的任何单位提供直升机支援。航空旅是中国军队从2009年开始组建的一个新概念。这些都是基于美国现役陆军航空旅的组织和装备。美国陆军在0世纪60年代发展了重型直升机航空旅,第一个旅是在越南组建的。从那时起,航空旅一直是美国陆军的标准配置。
 
China likes to adopt combat proven weapons, equipment and concepts, carefully studied American operations since the 1990 Iraq War, and published much of the official analysis in unclassified military media (magazines, newspapers and TV shows). That gives their analysis the widest possible circulation within the military. This generates lots of comments from officers, troops and civilian experts. This makes it easier to translate these foreign concepts into ones adapted to Chinese culture and current capabilities. This has worked. For example, over the last decade international competition events between special operations troops from many nations has often seen the Chinese teams finishing high in the final rankings.
中国喜欢采用经过战斗验证的武器、装备和概念,仔细研究了美国自1990年伊拉克战争以来的行动,并在非机密军事媒体(杂志、报纸和电视节目)上发表了大量官方分析。这使他们的分析在军队中得到了尽可能广泛的传播。这引起了军官、部队和文职专家的大量评论。这使得将这些外国概念翻译成适合中国文化和当前能力的概念变得更容易。这已经奏效了。例如,在过去十年中,来自许多国家的特种作战部队之间的国际比赛项目经常看到中国队在最终排名中名列前茅。
 
It’s one thing to copy tactics, organization and training routines. The Z-20 design was actually familiar to most Chinese because S-70s (the civilian version of the UH60) had been appearing in the news for decades and most Chinese thought it was a Chinese developed helicopter.
复制战术、组织和训练程序是一回事。直-20的设计实际上对大多数中国人来说很熟悉,因为S-70(UH60的民用型)已经出现在新闻中几十年了,大多数中国人认为它是中国研制的直升机。
 
Chinese army dissatisfaction with the Z-8A was intense and after six years of use the army issued an official “dissatisfaction notice” and news of this became public. The army was not happy with the Z-8A, a local design, and cited some serious problems, including poor performance, heavy maintenance needs and its tendency to stall in flight. While these problems were not featured in military media or the state-controlled media in general, there was still the Internet. 
中国军队对直-8A的不满非常强烈,在使用六年后,军队发布了一份官方的“不满通知”,相关消息公之于众。陆军对国产设计的直-8A不满意,并列举了一些严重问题,包括性能差、需要大量维护以及在飞行中失速的倾向。虽然这些问题没有出现在军事媒体或国家控制的媒体上,但互联网仍然存在。
 
When photos of the Z20 first appeared in 2013, Western observers nicknamed it the CopyHawk. The photos from China showed what appeared to be an American UH-60 helicopter landing at a Chinese military base. China did indeed reverse engineer the S-70 and apparently used some parts taken from the S-70s withdrawn from service to build prototypes of the Z-20 helicopter. China needed a new ten-ton class military transport and the CopyHawk would be consistent with other new Chinese aircraft and ship designs since the 1990s, which included complex modern Russian aircraft like the Su-30 and, of course, decades of work using the French SA321 Super Frelon. Since the 1990s China has been creating new vehicle, ship and aircraft designs that take more from the West than long-time source Russia.
当直-20的照片在2013年首次出现时,西方观察家给它起了个绰号叫“山寨鹰”(CopyHawk)。来自中国的照片显示,一架美国UH-60直升机似乎降落在中国的一个军事基地。中国确实对S-70进行了逆向工程,显然使用了从退役的S-70上取下的一些零件来制造直-20直升机的原型。中国需要一种新的10吨级军用运输机,CopyHawk将与20世纪90年代以来的其他中国新飞机和船舶设计保持一致,其中包括苏-30等复杂的现代俄罗斯飞机,当然,还有数十年来使用法国SA321“超级黄蜂”(Super Frelon)的工作。自20世纪90年代以来,中国一直在创造新的车辆、船舶和飞机设计,这些设计更多地来自西方,而不是长期来自俄罗斯。

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