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FANTAN Q-5 / A-5 [DF-106 - Dong Feng] - Design

The East Wind 106 design was a twin engine supersonic speed jet plane, which could both conduct close air support with formidable firepower to support ground forces, and can undertake low altitude high speed penetration of air defenses, to attack deep targets far behind enemy lines, carrying many kinds of weapons. After weapon load delivery, it had some air combat ability. The new machine's combat techniques and target choices were quite reasonable. It both guaranteed the new function of close air support effectively, and the deep interdiction duty. And considering China's technology ability at that time, it had not imitated the TSR.2 or B-58, which sought to reach a maximum speed of Mach 2.

Despite the desirability of very high speed low altitude supersonic performance, the designers avoided pursuing a course which would blindly aim too high, and thus avoided many technical difficulties. This provided the guarantee for the new machine's successful development, unlike the other purely domestic East Wind aircraft projects. The Q-5 basically imitates the J-6 [Mig-19], apart from the radically altered fuselage forward of the wing root, which replaces the J-6 [Mig-19] axial nose air inlet with air intakes on the sides of the fuselage. The Q-5 thus had significant design heritage from a proven Soviet design, unlike the other purely domestic East Wind aircraft projects, which remained paper planes.

The Q-5 basically imitates the J-6 [Mig-19], apart from the radically altered fuselage forward of the wing root, which replaces the J-6 [Mig-19] axial nose air inlet with air intakes on the sides of the fuselage. Essentially a MiG-19, the Q-5 has two lateral air intakes and a solid nose replacig the old through-fuselage air intake, allowing room for the installation of various navigational aids and weapon-delivery systems.

Based on the J-6 which was being developed at that time the general configuration of the Q-5 was finalized. Its features were as follows:

  • The engine air was taken from the inlets on each side of the fuselage, therefore the length of the air-intake was shortened and the efficiency of the inlet air was improved.
  • The use of a conic nose improved the pilot's vision, facilitated the horizontal bombing and saved the space for the installment of radar and other avionics.
  • A coke-bottle fuselage was designed according to transonic area rule to reduce transonic drag.
  • A sweptback wing with bigger area and smaller sweptback angle was chosen to improve its lift characteristics and, hence, turning characteristics.
  • A bigger area tailplane was chosen to increase its longitudinal stability.
  • A rear hinged and upward open canopy and a bigger and better streamlined dorsal spine were used.
  • The aircraft could carry a number of ground attack weapons and attack ground targets in a number of different ways, etc.
This distinctive general configuration embodied the wisdom and painstaking labour of the Chinese aircraft designers. The preliminary analysis of the configuration showed that the Q-5 would have good performance. The designers selected a high level starting point for the development of the domestic attack aircraft.

The Q-5 [Qiang-5 Attack-5, the export version being designated A-5] is a single-seat, twin-engine supersonic fighter developed by the Nanchang Aircraft Company of China. The Q-5 wings are mid-mounted, sharply swept-back, and tapered with blunt tips and wing fences. Two turbojets are located inside the body with semicircular air intakes and two exhausts. The fuselage is thick, flattened, with an upward taper to the rear section. The tail flats are high-mounted on the body, swept-back, and tapered with square tips. The sharply swept-back tail fin has a blunt tip.

The Q-5 has two WP-6 after burning type of turbojet engines, a fuselage 15,65 meters long, a height of 4.33 meters, and a wingspan of 9,68 meters. Its maximum takeoff load is 11,300 kg. It carries a cannon in each wing, mounted near the fuselage, and it can be loaded with air to air weapons. It can carry bombs and canisters in its hold and various kinds of bombs, rockets and spare fuel tanks in the racks under its wings.

In the late 1950s and the early 1960s, the J-6 (Mig-19) was an advanced fighter aircraft, with a low-altitude performance that was especially splendid, which could be improved into a supersonic attack plane. In the transformation of the design, to provide good observation of ground target conditions, the original nose air inlet design was altered to the side mounted air ducts, which at that time were of a very advanced design. Simultaneously, cabin armor was installed. Therefore, the final stage composition of the Q-5 was in fact was a brand-new fuselage added onto the Mig-19 wings. Lu Xiaopeng also used the novel area rate design, namely "waspwaist" contour. On air operated systems and operation, they also used many improvements. The pilot's downward angle of view amounted to 13.5 degrees, which was advantageous in attacks on ground targets, but the rear field of vision was bad. Generally speaking, in the 1960s the Q-5 was already the most advanced supersonic attack airplane compared with many of those then in Soviet Union, or the US at that time.

Certainly, the actual revisions caused the Q-5 performance relative to the J-6 to inevitably drop. The Q-5 bare weight increased approximately 1,360 kilograms, the non-external connection weight increased approximately 2,130 kilograms, in addition the air drag increased, causing its maximum level speed to reduce M0.23 compared to the Mig-19. Moreover, the Q-5 take-off and landing speed and the distance increased, and climb rate and ceiling was reduced. Because of additional internal weapon stores as well as on-board installation places, the interior fuel-tank capacity reduced, and therefore the combat radius was reduced along with it. Although large-scale external auxiliary fuel tanks may offset the fuel mass reduction, its basic fuel on board was reduced to 2,275 liters. Hardpoints on the wings can mount a pair of auxiliary fuel tanks with a capacity of 760 liters.

The Q-5 fuselage is pure metal semi-monocoque, the aft body installed with two of the same turbojets used on the J-6. These turbojet engines have thrust augmentation, with a normal static thrust of 25.5 kilo Newton (2600 kilograms), thrust augmentation thrust of 31.87 kilo Newton (3250 kilograms). The wing is the swept back in the monoplane wing formula, theangle of sweep-back 55, the top airfoil has a big wing fence. The tail plane and the fin sweep are respectively 55 and 57, the stabilizer is an all moving type for the drift mandrel. The body structure consists of aluminum alloy and high strength alloy steel as the primary materials. The landing gear is retractable, the front wheel and the main wheel are loaded with the disc braking and the automatic braking device.

The Q-5 main onboard installations include the high frequency direction finder, radio altimeter, beacon receiver, fire bomb sight and so on. The ejection seat is the same as that on the Mig-19, operating in the low speed range, ranging from 250 to 850 kilometer/hour speed. In an emergency the pilot may operate the emergency ejection handle which is in the chair arm rest. Machine hydraulic system works at a pressure of 210 kilograms/centimeters2. The air conditioning system is divided into main systematic and the emergency system, the working pressure of 110~130 kilograms/centimeters2. The cabin wind shield glass uses the ethyl alcohol anti-icing. Suppression system including carbon dioxide extinguisher and fire alarm signal installment.

The Q-5 primary armament is the 250/500/1000-3 series low drage demolition bomb which was independently developed by China. This series may also be delivered by the Q-6, Q-7, F-8 and other aircraft. This series of bombs shell body is tall and slender, the trajectory characteristic is good, the aerodynamic configuration resistance is small, suits the equipment on the high speed battle airplane. The brief performance parameter is as follows:

  1. 250-3: a length of 2.1 meters, the body diameter 0.28 meter, the bomb weight is 217 kilograms, with 91 kilogram TNT
  2. 500-3: a length of 2.87 meters, the body diameter 0.371 meter, the bomb weight is 469 kilograms, with 220 kilogram TNT
  3. 1000-3: a length of 3.5 meters, the body diameter 0.5 meter, the bomb weight is 980 kilograms, with 431 kilogram TNT
In addition in 250/500/1000-3 series foundations, developed 250/500/1000-4 series retarded bombs, the minimum altitude level bombing performance enhanced, has equipped the Q-5.

The Q-5 was a crystallization of Chinese aircraft designers' wisdom. It was being gradually perfected by continuous improvements. The following unique and novel designs of the Q-5 attack aircraft can still be used for reference today:

  • The conical nose and the intakes on sides of the fuselage were first used on Chinese fighter;
  • The transonic area rule was resolutely applied to the fuselage design and it set an example of boldly applying advanced technology;
  • The ingeniously constructed canopy and the way of its automatic opening were copied by other newly developed Chinese aircraft; and
  • The unique design of the nose wheel which retracted, rotated and laid flat in fuselage set a new approach for landing gear designs of other aircraft.

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Page last modified: 11-07-2011 02:46:48 ZULU