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March 16, 2017

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China’s amphibious plane to fly soon

THE AG600 amphibious aircraft is expected to take its maiden flight over land in the first half of this year and on water in the second half, said its developer AVIC.

Similar in size to the Boeing 737, the AG600 will be the world’s largest amphibious aircraft, according to the state aircraft maker the Aviation Industry Corp of China.

The 37-meter AG600, with a wingspan of 38.8 meters, has a maximum take-off weight of 53.5 tons.

The aircraft has already received 17 orders due to its multiple roles in fighting forest fires and marine rescue, AVIC said.

The first AG600 was completed in Zhuhai in July and shown to the public at the 2016 China Airshow.

Chief designer Huang Lingcai said “the AG600 is like a ship that can fly” due to its advanced gas-water dynamic engineering and underwater corrosion resistance technology.

With four China-made turboprop engines, the AG600 has a “ship’s body” with high mounted single-cantilever wing.

It can collect 12 tons of water in 20 seconds and transport up to 370 tons of water on a single tank of fuel.

The AG600 is useful in marine resource exploitation, marine environmental monitoring, resource detection and transport.


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