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Y-8 (Yunshu-8, or Yun-8) - Variants

To meet different requirements from different customers, a series of improvements and modifications have been conducted and about 20 types of special aircrafts have already been developed, all of which have been given corresponding Type Certificates (TC) and Production Certificates(PC). Y8 series begin to enter domertic civil market and some of them have been exported abroad. This not only meets the need for realizing national defense modernization but also widens both international and domestic market. The development of Y8 pressurized aircraft promise a bright outlook of aircraft as well as enhances performance of whole aircraft.

Up to now, the Y8 aircraft has become a kind of transport with various types and great potentialities for improvement and modification and was awarded first prize for science progress. The Y-8 is a general purpose transport with a great potential for further development. In 1985 it was retrofitted into a maritime patrol version and a carrier version for Black Hawk helicopter by aircraft designer Xu Peiling and his colleagues. At least two airborne early warning [AEW] versions have been developed, with China modifying the Yun-8 air freighters into medium-size AEW aircraft. The PLAAF also developed a larger AEW platform that included an Israeli phased-array system on a modified a Il-76B airframe.

Y-815 Dec 1974 design prototypes from 1975 initially by Xi'an development. Production started in 1980. Tactical military transport aircraft "based on" An-12-Prototype initially developed by Xi'an and by Shaanxi since 1975. Production began in 1980.
Y-8 MPA1984 The maritime patrol version, the Y-8MPA or the Y-8MP, is the first long-range maritime patrol aircraft deployed by the Peoples Liberation Army Navy [PLAN]. Maritime patrol aircraft are fitted with surface search radar, electronic warfare suite, day/IR cameras, and sonobuoys The Chinese military is seeking a more advanced and larger-scale carrier platform for the development of these missions. With a range of 5,600km, it consists of the Y-8/An-12 transport aircraft, equipped with a Litton APSO-504(V)3 surface search radar in an enlarged undernose radome along with additional navigational systems. Thus it can not only search, reconnoitre and photograph the targets on the water surface or under the water but also rescue the people from perils of the sea. It has successfully performed patrol missions since it was technically certificated for operation in September 1985. About half a dozen Y-8Xs patrol aircraft are believed in service, and although the aircraft has the potential to carry a large load of weapons, it is believed at present to be un-armed. The Chinese Navy also acquired Skymaster AEW radars. While Chinese officials claim these radars will be used for search and rescue operations, they could be used in AEW and surface surveillance roles.
Y-8A03 Nov 1985In 1985 it was retrofitted into a carrier version for S-70C "Black Hawk" helicopter by aircraft designer Xu Peiling and his colleagues, specially designed for carrying the Black Hawk helicopter to Tibet. It can quickly and conveniently transport the helicopters to the border areas. In December 1985, the Y-8 carrier version aircraft successfully transported the Black Hawk into Tibet and made contribution in using the Black Hawk for timely rescue of soldiers and civilians who were trapped in a snow storm in Mote region.
Y-8B civil goods-Civil cargo variant
Y-8C17 Dec 1990Improved variant with a fully pressurised cargo compartment
Y-8CA airborne radar test platform
Y-8CIexport modification
Y-8CD / Y-8DZ

An improved Y-8CB called Y-8CD or Y-8DZ and similar to the naval Y-8JB has been seen in PLAAF service and two are already said to be in service. Images from Huitong's CMA-Blog.

Y-8CD or Y-8DZ Y-8CD or Y-8DZ

Y-8D1986Export variant of the Y-8. In service with Bangladesh
Y-8DII Improved Y-8D upgraded with Western avionics. Not in production
Y-8EOct 1988WZ-5 (CH-1) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) carrier
Y-8F19 Nov 1988 livestock transport
Y-8F100 upgrade Y-8, using advanced avionics equipment for commercial cargo flight
Y-8F2001997Modified variant based on Y-8F100 with fully pressurised cargo compartment. Also in service with Tanzania Air Force
Y-8F400Aug 2001 Improved variant with a solid nose replacing the original ' glass-in ' nose and a three-man cockpit
Y-8F60014 Jan 2005Latest variant jointly developed by Shaanxi, Antonov Aeronautical Scientific-Technical Complex (ASTC) and Pratt and Whitney Canada. Features re-designed fuselage, as well as Western-made avionics and engine
Y-8H Aerial survey aircraft
Y-8JMaritime surveillance and anti-ship missile targeting, with British Skymaster Surveillance radar
Y-8X Maritime patrol, tactical reconnaissance and surveillance
Y-8 EW Electronic warfare and intelligence (EW/ELINT) variant
Y-8 airborne command post
Y-8 Balance BeamNov 2001 Airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft
Y-8 AEW Rotodome airborne early warning
Y-8 "Gaxin No.1"Electronic warfare
Y-8 "Gaxin No.2"Electronic intelligence
Y-8 "Gaxin No.3"Communication relay
Y-8 "Gaxin No.4"Stand-off electronic countermeasures
Y-8 "Gaxin No.5"KJ200 - Airborne early warning and control (AEW&C)
Y-8 "Gaxin No.7"Unknown purpose EW/ELINT aircraft

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Page last modified: 01-08-2021 14:09:33 ZULU