07:06 GMT +311 December 2017
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    This photo taken on January 2, 2017 shows Chinese J-15 fighter jets on the deck of the Liaoning aircraft carrier during military drills in the South China Sea

    China Creates Advanced Catapult for Planes 'Outperforming' the US

    © AFP 2017/ STR
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    It is expected to significantly improve the country’s aircraft carrier fleet's combat capacities.

    Chinese engineers have achieved a major military breakthrough by developing an advanced catapult for planes that was previously possessed only by the United States as the process of manufacturing has been very complex and sophisticated, China Daily reports.

    According to Rear Admiral Yin Zhuo, director of the People's Liberation Army Navy's expert consultation committee, the catapult that is aimed at helping planes take off from an aircraft carrier could be considered a great achievement in Chinese military industry.

    READ MORE: New! Super! Go! Fast! China Teases Hypersonic Military Attack Aircraft Designs

    The new system has already undergone a series of tests with J-15 carrier-borne fighter jets, which have made "thousands of takeoffs," Zhuo said as cited by the newspaper.

    In his opinion, China has even outperformed the US in certain aspects, in particular in the development of ship-based power systems.

    "Compared with the US, we have better technologies in key parts, such as motor-control devices and power distribution software. We are leaders in the research and development of integrated electric power systems."

    The use of catapults helps an aircraft carrier launch large fixed-wing planes as aircraft taking off from the warship need an external force to drag them because flight decks are often too short for them to gain sufficient speed.

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