Pakistan Air Force has launched the first batch of JF-17B dual seats JF-17 fighter aircraft

On Friday, December 27, 2019, Pakistan Air Force has launched the first batch of its JF-17 indigenous double-seat fighter jets dubbed JF-17B. An official ceremony was held at the Aircraft Manufacturing Factory, Kamra. This event was attended Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force as well as Mr. Yao Jing, Ambassador of People’s Republic of China, and Mr. Hao Zhaoping, Executive Vice President, Aviation Industries of China.

Pakistan Air Force has launched the first batch of dual seats JF 17 fighter aircraft 925 001New dual seats JF-17 fighter aircraft of Pakistani Air Force. (Picture source khaber Twitter account)

The Pakistani Air Force commander congratulated the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex and the China National Aero-Technology Import and Export Corporation (CATIC) on successfully fulfilling their 2019 production target, and completing the first 08 dual-seat JF-17 aircraft in a record time of five months. He also said that serial production of the dual-seat variant was a landmark development for the JF-17 program.

A prototype of the two-seat trainer variant of the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex/Chengdu Aerospace Corporation (PAC/CAC) JF-17 Thunder combat aircraft, dubbed JF-17B, has successfully conducted a maiden flight on April 27, 2017.

In comparison to the single-seat JF-17, the JF-17B variant features a dorsal fin that contains an additional fuel tank. The aircraft prototype also has a slightly larger wingspan and a marginally modified nose section to accommodate active electronically-scanned array (AESA) radar. It also sports a larger swept-back vertical stabilizer housing a new three-axis fly-by-wire system.

Like the single-seat variant, the JF-17B features seven hardpoints and presumably can carry external payloads of up to 3,650 kilograms. It can be armed with air-to-air missiles, anti-ship missiles, and various guided and unguided bombs.