Clone of America’s Top Jet Spotted on Chinese Airfield

What is China doing with a replica of the F-22 Raptor?
February 18, 2016 Updated: February 21, 2016

An apparent copy of America’s top jet has been spotted via satellite parked at Pucheng Neifu Airport, in Shaanxi province in central China.

The jet can be seen with, which uses Google Maps, but the jet doesn’t show up when viewed with Google Maps directly.

While the airport has no clear links to the People’s Liberation Army Air Force, Popular Mechanics notes that it’s located near the Xian Aeronautics Flight Experience Center, which doesn’t turn up any results when searched online.

What’s curious is that nearby are what appear to be replicas of other foreign military planes, including what looks like an American SR-71 Blackbird reconnaissance aircraft, and what looks like an American E-2 Hawkeye early warning aircraft.

Replicas of U.S. planes are seen on a Chinese airfield. (Google Maps)
Replicas of U.S. planes are seen on a Chinese airfield, including an E-2 Hawkeye (center, left) and a SR-71 Blackbird (center, right). (Google Maps)

The Chinese regime previously stole more than 50 terabytes of data from U.S. defense and government networks, revealed NSA documents disclosed in January 2015.

Among files stolen were radar designs and engine schematics for the F-35. It also said China had compromised the weapons systems of the F-22.

It wasn’t clear if the Chinese hackers had obtained models for the complete versions of either aircraft, but several experts have noted some remarkable similarities between the F-35 and China’s J-20 fighter jet.

Follow Joshua on Twitter: @JoshJPhilipp