In the People's Republic of China (PRC), preparations are underway for the upcoming sea trials of the new aircraft carrier of the Navy of the People's Liberation Army of China (PLA) "Fujian". This is reported by the South China Morning Post.
During the tests, it is planned to carry out test flights of the deck aviation. Lu Lishi, a former instructor at the Taiwan Naval Academy, claims that electromagnetic catapults were installed on the aircraft carrier a few months ago, and now it is planned to fly J-15T fighter jets.
According to some reports, carrier-based aviation flights will take place in August-October 2023. They can be timed to coincide with one of the significant dates for China - on August 1, the country celebrates the Day of the Foundation of the People's Liberation Army of China, and on October 1, the Day of the Foundation of the People's Republic of China.
Recall that the J-15T fighters are a modification of the J-15 fighter, developed on the basis of the Su-33 prototype. These aircraft were specially adapted for electromagnetic catapults. As for aircraft carriers, the PLA Navy currently has two such ships, the Liaoning and the Shandong.
In 2022, the third Chinese aircraft carrier, the Fujian, was launched. The ship will enter the PLA Naval Forces after the completion of the cycle of all tests, including tests of carrier-based aircraft. In China, the aircraft carrier is called the largest ship ever built by an Asian country.