China has started using indigenously developed WS-10A Taihang turbofan engines instead of Russian Saturn AL-31FN turbofan engines on its newly developed version of the J-10 Vigorous Dragon fighter jet (J-10B prototype1035). The People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) is already using the WS-10A turbo Fan engines on its J-11B Flanker.
The first prototype of the improved J-10B fighter was powered by a Russian Saturn AL-31FN turbofan engines and it flew for the first time on December 23, 2008. The J-10B fighter jet uses a chin mounted Diverterless supersonic inlet (DSI) to reduce weight and its overall frontal Radar cross section (RCS).
The J-10B also features a new Infra-Red Search / Track (IRST) for passive detection and a X-band Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar. The Chengdu Aircraft Corporation (CAC) has also integrated an electronic warfare system in the J-10B’s redesigned vertical tailfin.
China is currently facing a production capacity issues as to limited production of the WS-10A turbofan engines is hampering the production rate of the new build J-11B, J-11BS, J-15 and J-10B fighter jets which are ordered in large numbers by the People's Liberation Army Air Force and People's Liberation Army Navy.
Chinese government has also placed an order for the purchase of additional 123 Russian Saturn AL-31FN turbofan engines for the continuous operations of the J-10A, J-10S, Sukhoi Su-30MKK, Su-30MK2, Shenyang J-11A and Sukhoi Su-27s.