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PLAAF unveils YY-20 air-to-air tanker aircraft

2nd August 2022 - 03:15 GMT | by Gordon Arthur in Christchurch


A screengrab from a PLAAF video showing a YY-20 refuelling a pair of J-16s over the ocean east of China. (Chinese MND)

China's air force confirms it is operating the tanker variant of the Y-20, as the nation expands the reach of its military aircraft.

The People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has revealed the designation of its tanker variant of the Y-20 transport aircraft, the YY-20.

Commentators had previously christened the aircraft as Y-20U, but YY-20 (representing ‘tanker-transport’) has now been revealed as the official designation. The YY-20 has two refuelling pods on its outer wings and one more on the rear fuselage for hose and drogue fuelling missions.

This nomenclature was disclosed during a PLAAF press conference in Beijing on 31 July.

Snr Col Shen Jinke, a PLAAF spokesperson, said a YY-20 tanker aircraft and J-16 fighter had recently carried out over-water aerial

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Gordon Arthur


Gordon Arthur

Gordon Arthur was the Asia Pacific editor for Shephard Media. Born in Scotland and educated …

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