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PLAAF Xian H-6M Over Changzhou
The Xian H-6 is a Chinese under license built variant of the Soviet Tupolev Tu-16 bomber.

In the year 1959 was the first delivery of two Tupolev Tu-16, the license production agreement was signed in the late 1950´s by Xi'an Aircraft Industrial Corporation (XAC), and single parts were delivered to China and were assembled in Harbin. The aircraft resulting were first flown in September 1959. After the relations between China and the Soviet Union got broken, license production at Xi´an Aircraft Company slowed down, so that the first flight of the H-6A was on 24th December 1968. One year later production of the first (in comparison to the Tu-16 modified) version began; at least 120 aircraft were built.

Variants Edit

  • Xian H-6: Tupolev Tu-16 Kits. One of the two aircraft launched Chinas first nuclear bomb at Lop Nor on 14th May 1965.
  • Xian H-6A: Chinese Nuclear bomber
  • Xian H-6C: Upgraded H-6A with enhanced ECM equipment
  • Xian H-6D: Bomber with anti-ship missiles, armed with two YJ-6 anti-ship missiles, which were later replaced by supersonic missiles (two C-301 or four C-101). An upgraded variant , able to carry four YJ-8-missiles, is still in development
  • Xian H-6E: Strategic Nuclear bomber, introduced in the 1980s
  • Xian H-6F: Modified variant of the H-6A and H-6C from the 1990s, upgraded avionics
  • Xian H-6H: Ground attack missile carrier, developed at the end of the 1990s, armed with two KD-63 cruise missiles. First successful flight test was in 2002, it is operational since 2004/2005.
  • Xian H-6U: Tanker aircraft
  • Xian H-6U: Modified H-6D tanker aircraft
  • Xian H-6M: Cruise missile carrier, without internal weapon bay (to reduce weight), under-wing hardpoints were used, able to carry up to four YJ-83 anti-ship cruise missiles or YJ-62 long-range ant-ship cruise missiles (with terrain following system). In production since 2006.
  • Xian H-6 Testbed: Test aircraft

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