China Lands First Jet on Its First Aircraft Carrier

Underscores China's naval ambitions

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Nov 25, 2012 10:11 AM CST

(Newser) – China has successfully landed a fighter jet on its first aircraft carrier, which entered service two months ago, the country's official news agency confirmed today. The Liaoning aircraft carrier underscores China's ambitions to be a leading Asian naval power, but it is not expected to carry a full complement of planes or be ready for combat for some time. Xinhua News Agency said the landing exercise marked the debut of the J-15 fighter jet, a carrier-based fighter-bomber developed by China from Russia's Sukhoi Su-33.

The Defense Ministry's website carried photos of the jet taking off from and landing on the carrier. Citing unnamed naval sources, Xinhua said that the carrier platform and J-15 capabilities met all requirements and achieved "good compatibility." Xinhua says the J-15 is able to carry anti-ship, air-to-air, and air-to-ground missiles, and precision-guided bombs.

In this undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet takes off from China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.
In this undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet takes off from China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.   (Zha Chunming)
This undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, shows a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet on China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.
This undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, shows a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet on China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.   (Zha Chunming)
In this undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet lands on China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.
In this undated photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, made available on Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, a carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet lands on China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning.   (Zha Chunming)
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