F-117A Nighthawk in China?

I was checking out Sean Lawson, Ph.D.’s blog and found an interesting link to IMINT & Analysis – “Open source military analysis, strategic thinking, and Google Earth imagery interpretation.”

I really enjoy open source intelligence and all things military, so you know I just had to investigate. And here is what caught my eye immediately:

The image above, captured in March of 2010, depicts an F-117A mockup. Normally, a mockup of the F-117A wouldn’t be a very big deal, but this one is in the middle of Luoyang, China. First spotted by the intrepid members of the China Defense Forum, the mockup appears to be partially completed, apparently missing the forward fuselage.

Now what would an F-117A Stealth Fighter be doing in China? According to the article, the F-117A mockup is sitting at the Electro-Optical Technology Development Center in Luoyang, China. Apparently the center does R&D for Chinese air-to-air missiles.

Check out the IMINT & Analysis site for more information.

The picture above is from Google Earth. You can still see the stealth fighter  at coordinates 34.662363′ Lat, 112.429356′ Long.


11 thoughts on “F-117A Nighthawk in China?”

  1. On a more serious note, they’re probably trying to build a stealth fight/bomber fleet the same way they’re trying to build their 5th gen Mig fighter fleet: by stealing an reverse engineering it…

    1. You know I am really getting kinda fed up with that. The Russians copy our space shuttle, and the F-22, now China might be trying to copy the F-117.

      Is nothing sacred anymore?

      I know, we should make a new fighter and stick a washing machine on the back, just bolt the dang thing on and say it’s a new “cyber weapon” platform. Leak it out see how long it takes for Russia and China to copy it!

  2. Russians copy F-22? F-22 is basically smooth F-15. F-15 is basically smaller MiG-25.Shuttle? Shaping is the most useless and simpliest thing in shuttle. Materials and overall delivery system are way more important and it is different for Buran. This “copy” happened to be superior. How about F-35 designers bying Yak-141 engine tech?

    1. Eeeeeh, come one, look at pictures of them side by side. Or better yet look at the American and Russian space shuttle side by side. Both are almost direct copies, the biggest difference being the engines.

      As for the F-35, the engine design is like the Russian Yak-141 and German VJ 101D/E, compared to other STOL engines, but it uses the Rolls-Royce LiftSystem which is a creature all it’s own.

      I guess my point is Russia has some great engineers, I would rather see something “new” than just a copy. Just look at the KA-50 attack copter with co-axial rotors. Very unique and very intimidating looking.

  3. The F117a that crashed in Yugoslavia in ’99 was never returned to the US. Rumor has it the jet was tracked into China. The photo could be the actual aircraft. China has since come out with their own version of a stealth. Figures!

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