Connect with us

Aviation

Comparison between Boeing C-17 Globemaster and the China Y-20 Kunpeng

Comparison between Boeing C-17 Globemaster and the China Y-20 Kunpeng

The Boeing C-17 Globemaster III and the China Y-20 Kunpeng stand out as significant contenders in the domain of military transport aircraft, playing pivotal roles in bolstering the strategic airlift capacities of their respective nations. Both aircraft serve as indispensable components, contributing to the seamless mobility of troops and cargo for a range of operational scenarios.

In this video, we will conduct an in-depth comparison between two formidable aircraft, showcasing their versatility and reliability in meeting crucial logistics and transport needs on a global level. Join us as we explore the distinctive features and capabilities of both aircraft providing insights into their respective roles in military transport and strategic airlift operations.

Advertisement

y-20 kunpeng

Xi’an Y-20 Kunpeng, is a substantial military transport aircraft developed by the Xi’an Aircraft Industrial Corporation. The inception of the Y-20 project in July 2007 marked the commencement of an ambitious initiative. On January 26, 2013, it made its first flight, showcasing years of hard work and development. One of the distinctive features of the  Y-20 is its utilization of composite materials in various components.

Advertisement

Boeing C-17 Globemaster III is a large military transport aircraft developed by McDonnell Douglas for the United States Air Force (USAF) during the 1980s and early 1990s. It inherits its name from two predecessors with piston-engined designs. Renowned for its outstanding short takeoff and landing (STOL) capability, the C-17 excels in operating from airfields with restricted runway lengths, including those with austere or unpaved surfaces.

Length and Dimensions:

Advertisement

The China Y-20 Kunpeng boasts a length of 47 meters (154 feet 2 inches), while the Boeing C-17 Globemaster III is longer, measuring 174 feet (53 meters).

The Y-20’s wingspan stands at 50 meters, while the C-17’s wingspan is marginally wider at 169 feet and 9.6 inches.

Advertisement

Crew and Capacity:

The Y-20 accommodates a crew of three and boasts a cargo capacity of 66,000 kg (145,505 lb). In comparison, the C-17 features a crew of three and has an impressive cargo capacity of 170,900 lb (77,519 kg).

Advertisement

Weight and MTOW

The Y-20 exhibits an empty weight of 100,000 kg (220,462 lb) and a maximum takeoff weight of 220,000 kg (485,017 lb).

Advertisement

Conversely, the C-17 is notably heavier, with an empty weight of 282,500 lb and a maximum takeoff weight of 585,000 lb.

Engine

Advertisement

Y-20 powered by four Shenyang WS-20 turbofan engines, each generating 140 kN (31,000 lbf) thrust. C-17 is powered by four Pratt & Whitney PW2000 turbofan engines, each delivering 40,440 lbf (179.9 kN) thrust.

Performance and Range:

Advertisement

In terms of speed, the Y-20 achieves a maximum speed of Mach 0.75 and a cruise speed of 630 km/h (390 mph). On the other hand, the C-17 operates at a cruise speed of 450 knots (520 mph)

Y-20 range extends up to 7,800 km (4,800 mi) and a ferry range of 10,000 km (6,200 mi). On the other hand, C-17 has a range of 4,480 km (2,780 mi) demonstrating a difference in both speed and operational range.

Advertisement

Service Ceiling: The Y-20 Kunpeng boasts a service ceiling of 13,000 meters (43,000 feet), while the C-17 Globemaster III reaches a higher service ceiling of 45,000 feet (14,000 meters)

The Y-20 incorporates composite materials in various components, showcasing its commitment to advanced engineering. Developed by Guilin Aerospace Co., the aircraft features eight distinct relay types tailored for its systems.

Advertisement

Its internal configurations are versatile, including an option for a separate passenger deck above the cargo bay. To enhance offloading efficiency in challenging terrains, the Y-20 is equipped with ceiling-mounted rails, especially useful when the rear ramp is inaccessible.

C-17 boasts an exceptionally spacious rear cargo opening and a robust ramp, surpassing even the strength of the C-5’s ramp while offering a significantly larger aperture. C-17 stands out for its extensive airdrop capabilities. The C-17 can execute diverse airdrop missions, accommodating troops through both static line and free fall methods, along with various equipment airdrop systems such as CDS, LVAD, dual row pallets, door bundles, and more.

Advertisement

The Y-20 integrates a distinctive design featuring a shoulder wing, T-tail configuration, rear cargo-loading assembly, and robust retractable landing gear with three rows, each consisting of a pair of wheels, totaling six wheels on each side. Equipped with four large LCD Electronic Flight Instrument System (EFIS) displays, enhancing the aircraft’s avionic capabilities and providing advanced visual information for the flight crew.

C-17’s cargo floor is equipped with rollers for palletized cargo, but it can be flipped to provide a flat surface suitable for vehicles and other rolling stock. Cargo is loaded through a spacious aft ramp, accommodating various rolling stock such as a 69-ton (63-metric ton) M1 Abrams main battle tank, as well as other armored vehicles, trucks, trailers, and palletized cargo.

Advertisement

On the other hand, Y-20 features a spacious four-meter tall cargo hold capable of lifting up to 66 tons and transporting either 2 Type 15 tanks or 1 Type 99A tank over an impressive distance of 7,800 km. The aircraft offers versatile internal configurations, including an option with a separate passenger deck positioned above the cargo area. To facilitate efficient offloading in scenarios where the rear ramp is inaccessible, the Y-20 incorporates ceiling-mounted rails.

Advertisement
Advertisement