China Test Flies Airship for Tourism Sector, Urban Services

China Tests Flies Airship for Tourism Sector, Urban Services
China Tests Flies Airship for Tourism Sector, Urban Services
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Written by Harry Johnson

Potential customers across different sectors, including the tourism industry, have already shown interest in the AS700 airship.

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China’s domestically-built AS700 civil manned airship recently completed its inaugural ferry flight in Hubei Province, central China. The initial air vehicle is set to be delivered before the year concludes. The Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the developer, reported that the airship departed from Jingmen Zhanghe Airport and safely arrived at an airport in Jingzhou after a flight duration of one hour and 46 minutes.

The airship project’s chief designer stated that the airship showcased excellent maneuverability and that the flight successfully confirmed the AS700’s flight communication, facility loading, take-off, and landing capabilities. This establishes a solid groundwork for future longer distance and endurance flights.

Potential customers across different sectors, including the tourism industry, have already shown interest in the AS700 airship.

After obtaining the type certificate in China last year, the AS700 has received orders for 18 airship units. The majority of customers come from the low-altitude sightseeing tourism industry. The development team behind the airship intends to enhance it to broaden its range of uses, such as emergency rescue, urban public services, and other sectors.

AVIC stated that the AS700 is a state-of-the-art civilian airship designed in accordance with the airworthiness regulations of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). Furthermore, the developer possesses exclusive proprietary rights over this piloted airship.

The manned airship, which consists of a single capsule, can accommodate up to 10 individuals, including the pilot. Its maximum take-off weight is 4,150 kg, it can cover a distance of up to 700 km during a flight, and it can remain airborne for a maximum duration of 10 hours.

The AS700 project witnessed numerous technological advancements achieved by the development team. Notable breakthroughs included the design of a light and cost-effective capsule airship configuration, as well as the development of associated flight control technologies. Moreover, it holds the distinction of being the first thrust-vector-control airship in the country to obtain type certification from civil aviation authorities.

The CAAC stated that China’s low-altitude economy exceeded 500 billion yuan in 2023 and is projected to reach 2 trillion yuan by 2030, thanks to its vast market and dense city clusters. Consequently, the AS700 airship is experiencing favorable prospects in this strategic emerging industry. AVIC affirms that the development team will prioritize the growth of low-altitude sightseeing services and other demonstration scenarios to expand the future commercial applications of this new airship.

WHAT TO TAKE AWAY FROM THIS ARTICLE:

  • The Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the developer, reported that the airship departed from Jingmen Zhanghe Airport and safely arrived at an airport in Jingzhou after a flight duration of one hour and 46 minutes.
  • AVIC stated that the AS700 is a state-of-the-art civilian airship designed in accordance with the airworthiness regulations of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).
  • Its maximum take-off weight is 4,150 kg, it can cover a distance of up to 700 km during a flight, and it can remain airborne for a maximum duration of 10 hours.

About the author

Avatar of Harry Johnson

Harry Johnson

Harry Johnson has been the assignment editor for eTurboNews for mroe than 20 years. He lives in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is originally from Europe. He enjoys writing and covering the news.

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