Editorials International News China delivers its domestically developed AG600, world's largest amphibious aircraft by 2022
China delivers its domestically developed AG600, world's largest amphibious aircraft by 2022
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Beijing sources reported that China's state-run news agency reported citing the plane's manufacturer that "They are endeavoring to get the airworthiness certification from the civil aviation authorities by 2021, and deliver it to the customers by 2022". Xinhua quoted Huang Lingcai, the plane's chief designer at state-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), as saying that China developed the AG600 as part of a drive to modernize its military; in places like the South China Sea that has rattled nerves in the Asia-Pacific region and the United States.
Meanwhile it made its maiden flight in China in December. Huang also said the aircraft would make more flights in 2018, including its first takeoff from water. Accordingly AVIC has spent about eight years developing the aircraft, which is roughly the size of a Boeing Co 737 and is designed to carry out marine rescues and battle forest fires, which has a range of up to 4,500 kms (2,800 miles) and is designed to be able to take off and land in two metre (six feet) waves.
Furthermore it is powered by four turboprop engines; the AG600 can carry 50 people during maritime search and rescue missions, and can scoop up 12 metric tons of water within 20 seconds for firefighting trips, according to state media. Previously in December, state media said that the aircraft had received 17 orders so far from Chinese government departments and Chinese companies.