World’s Largest Amphibious Aircraft Successfully Conducts Maiden Flight

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BEIJING – The world’s largest amphibious aircraft, Chinese AG600, designed to extinguish fires, successfully completed its maiden flight on Sunday, according to the broadcast conducted by the CCTV channel.

The plane code named Kunlong took off from the airport of the city of Zhuhai in the southern province of Guangdong at 9.38 a.m. local time (01.38 GMT) and has spent 64 minutes in the air, the maximum flight altitude was 3,000 meters. AG600 was accompanied by another aircraft with a team of technical staff.

China completed the assembly of the AG600 in July last year on the assembly line in Zhuhai.

The aircraft is the largest of its kind not only in China, but also in the world. It is designed to extinguish fires and carry out rescue operations on the water. In addition, AG600 can use additional equipment for monitoring the marine environment, passenger and freight traffic, as well as exploration of mineral deposits.

The aircraft is equipped with four turboprop engines and is able to receive on board 12 tonnes of water in 20 seconds. According to its developer, the state-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), AG600 has 130-feet-long fuselage, 127-feet wingspan, maximum flight range of 2,800 miles and maximum take-off weight of 53.5 tonnes.