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CAIC Z-11

China (1998)
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Origin: China
Year: 1998
Type: Multirole Light Utility / Attack Helicopter
Manufacturer(s): Changhe Aircraft Industries Corporation (CAIC) - China
Production: 46
Status: Active, In-Service


The CAIC Z-11 light helicopter became the first Chinese helo to be entirely designed on CAD systems - it is based on the French Eurocopter Ecureuil.


Detailing the development and operational history of the CAIC Z-11 Multirole Light Utility / Attack Helicopter.  Entry last updated on 5/15/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

The French-originated Eurocopter (Airbus) Ecureuil forms the basis of the relatively new Chinese-designed and -developed CAIC 'Z-11'. The Z-11 is a light utility helicopter developed for both military and civilian markets and is showcased with a broad spectrum of inherent capabilities. It is similar in role and function to the American MD Helicopters MD500 (Hughes Model 500) light series helicopters which has proven a global favorite (over 4,500 having been built).

Development of the Z-11 was started in 1989 and involved heavy reliance on CAD systems (indeed the Z-11 is billed as the first all-CAD/CAM designed Chinese helicopter). The prototype achieved a first-flight on December 22nd, 1994 and, by late October of 2000, the helicopter had completed the requisite testing and certification phases. The Z-11 was introduced in September of 1998 and is manufactured by the Changhe Aircraft Industries Corporation (CAIC).

As completed, the Z-11 features a length of 11.25 meters, a diameter (rotor included) of 10.7 meters and a height of 3.15 meters. Its empty weight is 1,120 kilograms against an MTOW of 2,200 kg. Power is from a Chinese-built WZ-8D series turboshaft engine developing 684 horsepower and driving a three-bladed main rotor and two-bladed tail rotor (set to starboard).

The frontal section of the fuselage is largely windowed for excellent vision out-of-the-cockpit. The pilot(s) enter and exit by way of automobile-style doors along the fuselage sides. The passenger cabin is fitted directly aft of the cockpit with the engine compartment along the roof. The undercarriage sports a simple twin skid arrangement connecting to the underside of the aircraft at four points. The empennage is slender and houses the drive shaft for the tail rotor.

Armed versions of the helicopter have been featured with wingstubs for mounting variable armament including Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs). Door positions have also been outfitted with either machine guns or Automatic Grenade Launchers (AGLs) atop pintle mounts. A chin-mounted optics set is also noted on these armed birds.

There are several variants of the base Z-11 design planned and this includes the civilian market 'Z-11' itself. The Z-11J is a militarized form modified for the rigors of service. The Z-11W is an armed version designed to undertake various roles including reconnaissance, suppression and MEDEVAC. The Z-11WA is a lightened scout platform. The Z11MB1 features the Arriel 2B1A series engine from France. The Z-11ME1 is another noted variant. The CZ11W is a dedicated light-attack form carrying either Chinese or French engines and supports the usual attack ordnance including guided missiles, rocket pods and gun pods. The Z-11WB is an attack-reconnaissance platform with all-new cockpit, weapons stations and increased mission equipment.

Any available statistics for the CAIC Z-11 Multirole Light Utility / Attack Helicopter are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).






Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 200mph
Lo: 100mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (173mph).

    Graph average of 150 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the CAIC Z-11W's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
46
46


  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
  Compare this entry against other aircraft using our Comparison Tool  
Global Operators:
China
Historical Commitments / Honors:

Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.
Measurements and Weights icon
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the CAIC Z-11W model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
2


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
36.91 ft


Meters
11.25 m


Dimension
WIDTH


Feet
35.10 ft


Meters
10.7 m


Dimension
HEIGHT


Feet
10.33 ft


Meters
3.15 m


Weight
EMPTY


Pounds
2,469 lb


Kilograms
1,120 kg


Weight
LOADED


Pounds
4,850 lb


Kilograms
2,200 kg

Engine icon
Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
1 x WZ-8D turboshaft engine developing 684 horsepower driving a three-bladed main rotor and two-bladed tail rotor.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
173 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
278 kph


Knots
150 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
373 mi


Kilometers
600 km


Nautical Miles
324 nm


Performance
CEILING


Feet
17,192 ft


Meters
5,240 m


Miles
3.26 mi

Supported Weapon Systems:

Graphical image of an air-to-air missile weapon
Graphical image of a short-range air-to-air missile
Graphical image of an aircraft Gatling-style rotating gun
Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft heavy machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft machine gun pod
Graphical image of an aircraft air-to-surface missile
Graphical image of an aircraft rocket pod
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Graphical image of an aircraft guided bomb munition
Armament - Hardpoints (2):

OPTIONAL (role dependent):
CS/LM12 minigun, LGS3 40mm Automatic Grenade Launcher (AGL), 7.62mm/12.7mm machine gun pods, rocket pods, Air-to-Surface Missiles (ASMs), Air-to-Air Missiles (AAMs), conventional and precision-guided drop bombs.
Variants: Series Model Variants
• Z-11 - Base Series Designation; civilian market form.
• Z-11J - Militarized variant of the Z-11.
• Z-11W - Armed military variant for multirole use.
• Z-11WA - Military scout platform
• Z-11MB1 - Outfitted with alternative French-based Arriel 2B1A series turboshaft engine.
• Z-11ME1 - Variant
• CZ-11W - Armed light-attack platform with either Chinese or French engine; revamped over-battlefield capabilities and systems.
• Z-11WB - Armed attack-reconnaissance variant; all-new cockpit; revised weapons support and capabilities; multirole functionality.