Reducing aero engine technology reliance on Russia, China appears to have fitted its indigenously developed turbofan engines onto its carrier-based fighter jets, according to reports.

In released footage via the Chinese-owned media last week, the J-15 Flying Shark was spotted with what seemed to be the latest variant of its domestically made Shenyang Liming WS-10 Taihang engine on its rear view.

According to the assessment done by Janes, the newest feature could be a ‘B’ variant with a more powerful capability than the WS-10A. With little to no formally released information on the Chinese aircraft, experts could only speculate based on the available data on the development timeline and what the potential installation of the WS-10 engine meant for the future of the J-15s. Some analysts pointed out the impressive maturity of the indigenous powerplant if it is indeed being integrated from initially intended land-based aircraft to carrier-based platforms.

The J-15 is an all-weather, twinjet, carrier-based fourth-generation multirole fighter aircraft developed by Shenyang Aircraft Corporation and 601 Institute based on the former Soviet Union Su-33 Flanker for the People’s Liberation Army Naval Air Force. It is also the last known aircraft to utilize the AL-31F Russian powerplant still, as most of the Chinese fleet has already received domestically-made engines.