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China’s homegrown jumbo passenger jet takes to the sky

CHINA TAKES ON BOEING

SHANGHAI, May 5 (Xinhua) — China took a major step toward becoming a global aviation powerhouse as its homegrown large passenger plane, the C919, took to the sky on Friday.

The flight makes China the fourth jumbo jet producer after the United States, Western Europe and Russia. It also marks a milestone for the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), the Shanghai-based manufacturer of the C919.

The twin-engine plane departed from Shanghai Pudong International Airport with a crew of five on board but no passengers.

The “C” in the aircraft’s name stands for both China and COMAC, while 9 symbolizes “forever” in Chinese culture, and 19 represents the 190 seats at maximum capacity.

With a standard range of 4,075 kilometers, the narrow-body jet is comparable with updated Airbus 320 and Boeing’s new generation 737 planes, signaling the country’s entry into the global aviation market.

The successful flight moves China one step closer to transforming itself from a manufacturer of low-cost goods to a creator of advanced technology.


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