AG-600, the world's largest amphibious aircraft, takes its maiden flight in Zhuhai, Guangdong province on Dec 24, 2017. [Photo by Zhao Lei/chinadaily.com.cn]
The aircraft can take off and land on both ground and water. It has an operational range of more than 4,000 kilometers and is capable of carrying 50 people during a maritime search-and-rescue mission. To extinguish forest fires, it can collect 12 tons of water from a nearby lake or sea within 20 seconds and then use the water to put out fires in an area of around 4,000 square meters, information from the company shows.
AVIC said the aircraft will be of great importance to the country's emergency rescue system and the building of strong sea power, noting tens of thousands of researchers and engineers from nearly 200 domestic institutes, universities and enterprises took part in the project.
The State-owned aviation giant also said that 98 percent of AG-600's over 50,000 components are supplied by Chinese companies, explaining the project has extensively boosted the nation's civil aviation manufacturing industry.
Next, the aircraft will continue to make flight tests and will start certification process, according to AVIC.