Global Aircraft -- Q-5 Fantan
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Q-5 Fantan Specifications
Primary Function: Close-support fighter
Contractor: Nanchang Aircraft Company
Crew: One
Unit Cost: N/A
  Two Liming (LM) Wopen-6A turbojets each rated at 8,267 lb (36.78 kN) with afterburning
Length: 54 ft 10 in (16.74 m)
Wingspan: 31 ft 10 in (9.8 m)
Height: 14.8 feet (4.51 m)
Empty: 14,054 lb (6375 kg)
Maximum Takeoff: 26,080 lb (11830 kg)
Speed: Mach 1.12 (740 mph / 1190 km/h)
Ceiling: 52,000 ft (15850 m)
Combat Radius: 600 km hi-lo-hi
  Two internal 23-mm cannons with 100 rpg; max ordnance of 4,409 lb (2000 kg) including 250kg and 500kg bombs, rocket pods, and PL-5 AAMs
Service Life
First Flight: June 4, 1965 (first prototype)
October 1969 (updated prototype)
End of Service: N/A
Number Built: [1,000+ total]

Q-5 Fantan Achievements
No known major achievements

Q-5 Fantan Features
The MiG-19/J-6 became the starting point, but the new design, designated Qiang-5 (fifth attack design), had a longer fuselage, area ruled to reduce transonic drag and accommodate a 4 m (13-ft) long internal weapons bay. The air intakes were moved to the fuselage sides to make space in the nose for a planned target radar (which was never actually fitted). New wings with greater area and reduced sweep were incorporated. The Q-5 shares the J-6's Liming Wopen-6A (Tumansky R-9) turbojet engines. The redesign costs some high-altitude speed, but the Q-5 is as fast as the MiG-19/J-6 at low level, thanks largely to the area-ruled fuselage.

Fixed armament of the Q-5 was reduced to two Type 23-1 23 mm cannon with 100 rounds per gun, mounted in the wing roots. Two pylons under each wing and two pairs of tandem pylons under the engines were provided in addition to the weapons bay. A total of 1,000 kg (2,205 lb) of ordnance could be carried internally, with an additional 1,000 kg externally. On many aircraft the weapons bay is now used primarily for an auxiliary fuel tank.

About 1,000 aircraft were produced, 600 of them being the updated Q-5A. A small number, perhaps a few dozen, Q-5As were modified to carry nuclear weapons; these are believed to retain their internal weapons bay. A long-range Q-5I, introduced in 1983, added a fuel tank instead of the internal weapons bay, compensating for that with the provision of two additional underwing pylons. Some of these aircraft serve with the PLA Navy, and have apparently been equipped with radar to guide anti-ship missiles. They can also drop torpedoes. Subsequent minor upgrades include the Q-5IA, with a new gun/bomb sighting system and avionics, and the Q-5II, with radar warning receiver (RWR).

Plans for an upgraded Q-5/A-5 with Western equipment and new navigation and attack (nav/attack) systems were largely aborted following the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, but the 'Fantan' continues in service. It is a capable light attack aircraft, although its limited navigation and weapons-delivery systems are inferior to more modern aircraft.

In more recent years, the PLAAF has begun to field newer models of the Q-5, that take in some of the technology that was learned about during the cancelled Q-5M and Q-5K projects. The Q-5 introduces a nose-mounted laser rangefinder, and a laser designator is also likely to be fitted due to the fact that the aircraft is said to be able to deliver laser-guided bombs.It is also believed to be capable of delivering nuclear munitions. The Q-5D also has new avionics, including a HUD and a new navigation system. The Q-5E and Q-5F are also two more models which are reportedly being worked on, though little is known about them at this time. One of them could potentially be the new two-seater that has been seen in a few photographs. Alternatively, this two-seater could be designated Q-5J.

Q-5 Fantan Background
The PRC was an enthusiastic user of the MiG-19, which it manufactured locally as the Shenyang J-6 starting in 1958. In August 1958 the People's Liberation Army requested development of a jet attack aircraft for the air support role.

The first prototype was completed in 1960, but the Chinese political situation resulted in the project being cancelled in 1961. A small team kept it alive until it was re-opened in 1963, when production was shifted to Nanchang. The first flight finally occurred on 4 June 1965. Series production began in 1969, with squadron delivery starting in 1970.

In the 1980s, the 'Fantan' was exported to nations such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and North Korea, and is often known as the A-5 in those nations.

Q-5 Fantan Photos
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Q-5 Fantan

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