China Focus: China accelerates development of advanced emergency-rescue equipment

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by Xinhua writer Hu Tao

BEIJING, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- China is gearing up to develop more advanced equipment to promote the modernization of the country's emergency management systems and capabilities.

Multiple new models of aircraft, smart robots and other equipment for emergency response are on the fast track of development and application, thanks to the joint efforts of government authorities and manufacturers.

The Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) is endeavoring to speed up the progress of key models of aeronautical equipment tailored to serve the country's emergency rescue demands, according to the AVIC, China's leading aircraft manufacturer.

Significant advancements are being made in the homegrown emergency-rescue aircraft, including the AG600 series of large amphibious aircraft, the Wing Loong series of large civil unmanned aerial vehicles, the MA60 firefighting airplane, the AC-series civil helicopters, and others.

The AG600M firefighting aircraft, a firefighting model belonging to the AG600 large amphibious aircraft family, is aiming to obtain its type certificate before the end of 2024, according to the AVIC.

The aircraft has entered the key phase of airworthiness compliance verification. It has recently completed the cold-weather flight tests and is now progressing to additional phases of flight testing, which is a crucial step in securing airworthiness certification.

The AG600 large amphibious aircraft family is tailored to carry out firefighting, maritime search and rescue, and other rescue missions in all terrains across the country.

China's MA60 firefighting aircraft, a new member of the Modern Ark multipurpose aircraft family, also initiated its flight tests in late January to verify its compliance with the airworthiness regulations of the Chinese civil aviation authorities, the AVIC said.

The AVIC added it is committed to facilitating the development and application of emergency rescue aeronautical equipment to sustain the country's capabilities in emergency management.

Robots are also playing increasingly important roles in the emergency rescue sector as they can be used for multiple purposes including search and rescue during emergencies.

China plans to accelerate efforts to produce a batch of sophisticated emergency response robots. In January, the Ministry of Emergency Management and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology jointly issued a guideline to boost the development and application of emergency response robot technologies.

The major goal is to develop a batch of advanced emergency response robots that are more professional, refined and intelligent by 2025, according to the guideline.

Emergency response robots are intelligent machines designed to carry out tasks such as monitoring and early warning, search and rescue operations, communication commands, and other critical functions in disaster prevention, mitigation and relief efforts.

Efforts will be made to develop emergency response robots for key tasks such as life search, material support, fire extinguishing, high-risk operations, and complex rescue during emergencies like floods, fires, earthquakes, geological disasters, and others.

The guideline also emphasizes the cultivation of bases and ecosystems to facilitate testing and pilot applications of these robots, while encouraging increased utilization and support for their use in emergency rescue operations.

The development and application of emergency-response robots are of symbolic significance to China's emergency management system and the capability modernization of the sector, according to the guideline. Enditem

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