A large civil utility AC313A helicopter lands on the ground after its maiden flight at an airport in Jingdezhen, east China’s Jiangxi Province, May 17, 2022. (Xinhua/Hu Chenhuan)
BEIJING, July 22 (Xinhua) — China’s booming general aviation industry has continued to make significant progress in both manufacturing and operating aircraft, with an increasing number of new models and a increased support which should stimulate the sector.
Joint efforts have been made to facilitate general aviation operations and popularize them in the socio-economic sphere, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).
The civil aviation authorities are committed to further accelerating the progress of the general aviation sector in major areas such as public service, emerging consumption, short-haul transport, drone application and conventional mining during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025). ).
The country has made steady progress in developing local general aircraft models, such as helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and in facilitating the operations of the general aviation industry.
During China’s 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-2020), the country’s general aviation industry completed 4.58 million hours of flight operations, with an average annual growth rate of 5.2% over the period, according to CAAC statistics.
Notably, China’s drone industry maintained rapid growth during the period, with 11,000 drone operating companies, 517,000 drones and 89,000 drone pilots.
General aviation normally refers to flight operations in civil aviation other than public air transport, such as air services for agriculture, medical rescue, disaster relief and rescue, combat fires and recreation.
China is facilitating the development of helicopters and other general aviation aircraft to better meet the country’s demands in a faster and more flexible manner.
China has built a complete family of helicopters through decades of tireless effort. AVIC has become one of the top seven helicopter manufacturers in the world, with more than 60 models across 12 helicopter series. The country’s top aircraft manufacturer, Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), predicts further progress.
The AC352 medium multi-purpose civilian helicopter is set to obtain certification from civil aviation authorities, according to AVIC.
Enriching the pedigree of China’s civil helicopter family in the 7-ton class, a mid-size multi-purpose twin-engine civil helicopter can carry up to 16 passengers with a maximum take-off weight of 7.5 tonnes.
The other new civilian helicopter model is also progressing. The AC313A Large Civil Utility Helicopter completed a successful maiden flight in May.
Specially developed to meet the country’s needs for air rescue missions, the AC313A can operate in various terrains and complex weather conditions such as highlands and high and low temperatures. It can carry up to 28 people and can also carry up to 5 tons of water for firefighting missions.
China will strive to have 3,500 aircraft registered for general aviation by the end of the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), according to a new plan on general aviation recently unveiled by the CAAC.
The plan includes the improvement of general aviation emergency rescue services, support for innovation in the use of drones and the continued modernization of general aviation services in the agricultural and industrial sectors. , among other measures. ■