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China promotes aircraft development to serve emergency rescue missions

Xinhua | Updated: 2023-02-03 15:33
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BEIJING -- China's indigenously-developed aircraft continue to make new progress to serve emergency rescue missions and help strengthen the country's emergency rescue capabilities.

China has developed a series of aircraft with air rescue capabilities, including amphibious airplanes, helicopters and large unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), among others.

A vital aeronautical equipment in China's emergency rescue system, the AG600 large amphibious aircraft has recently entered the airworthiness flight-test phase, according to the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the country's leading plane-maker.

AG600M airplanes, the firefighting model of the AG600 aircraft family, have arrived at the flight-test center in Yanliang District in Xi'an, northwest China's Shaanxi Province.

Codenamed Kunlong, or "water dragon" in Chinese, the AG600 aircraft family is being developed to serve emergency rescue missions, such as forest firefighting, maritime search and rescue. A member of the AG600 family, the AG600M is specifically designed to combat forest fires.

This year is crucial for the development of AG600 aircraft. With the goal of making progress toward securing the airworthiness certification, the aircraft will undergo a series of tests in 2023.

It is expected that the firefighting model and emergency rescue model of AG600 aircraft will obtain certification in 2024 and 2025, respectively, the Chinese planemaker said.

A vast country with complex landforms, China has been continuously strengthening its capabilities in the air emergency rescue sector.

China's 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) has proposed the improvement of the national emergency management system by strengthening and improving air rescue system options and capabilities.

The Wing Loong large civil UAV family has tapped potential in the rescue and climate fields, by supporting telecommunications restoration for earthquake-hit regions and conducting cloud seeding operations over drought-affected areas.

The Z15, also known as the AC352, obtained certification from the Civil Aviation Administration of China last July. It can adapt to various environments and missions, and can play diverse roles such as delivering essential supplies and transporting injured people.

In the future, more configurations within this series are expected to be designed for tasks such as firefighting and medical rescue, according to the AVIC.

The AVIC is committed to meeting the needs of China's ever-improving emergency rescue capacities with independently-developed products, technologies and services to support people's livelihood, well-being and economic development of the nation.

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