The World’s Largest Seaplane
This world’s largest amphibious plane which will soon enter service. Made by the state-owned aircraft maker Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the AG600’s size is comparable to that of a Boeing 737. The company says this aircraft will be used to sail low during forest fires and rescue people in danger offshore.
This mega structure measures 37 m (121 ft) in length and has a wingspan of 38.8 m (127 ft). This beast of an aircraft is capable of taking off and landing both on dry runways and the stretches of water, with the requirement that they are more than 1,500 m long, 200 m wide and 2.5 m deep.
The plane has a maximum take-off weight of around 53.5 tonnes, and can tear the skies with a top cruising speed of 500 km/h (310.7 mph). It has a range of 4,500 km (2,800 mi), and can fly for up to 12 hours at a time according to AVIC.
This mega plane took around seven years to be completed, and it has the capacity to collect and save up to 50 people from the ocean at once. Despite company’s insistence, plane’s applications may extend beyond search and rescue scenarios. The Chinese news agency called Xinhua reported that the plane is also equipped to carry environmental monitoring in marine settings, and can also be used for the detection and transportation of resources.
With advanced gas-water dynamic engineering and underwater corrosion resistance technology, it is nothing short of a mammoth ship that can also fly. As per AVIC, the AG600 is currently aimed mostly at the domestic market and already has 17 orders placed for the giant plane.
The completion and successful testing of AG600’s can be termed as the latest breakthrough in China’s aviation industry, which demonstrates an overall improvement of China’s national strength and research capacity.