Chinese Wing-in-Ground Effect Vehicles - Ekranoplans in PLA service

Discussion in 'Air Force' started by Deino, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. Deino

    Deino Brigadier
    Staff Member Super Moderator

    Sep 15, 2005
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    In fact I'm not entirely sure if this is the correct location since WIGs are barely true aircraft but also not really ships ...

    Anyway, one of the probably most unique - and barely known in the West - type in PLA service is the XTW-5 WIG (XTW = 信天翁 XìnTiānWēng = Albatros). From what I know - most of all from this site: - it entered service in 2003 within the PLA Border Defence Troops, 1 Patrol Boat Squadron/Jiamusi based at Dangbizhen at the Xingkai Lake in the former Shenyang Military Region; now Northern Theater Command.

    But all i know are images of two different serial numbers ... nothing more. Are they still in service, how many were in service and most of all the Scramble coordinates at Dangbizhen do not (at least for my eyes) show a true military base?? Also, does anyone have more information or additional images ?


    XTW-5 WIG operational - 1xs.jpg XTW-5 WIG operational.JPG XTW-5 - 1.jpg
  2. taxiya

    taxiya Major
    Registered Member

    Dec 24, 2006
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    Because it is not part of PLA? So no military base? See the national flag instead of army flag and no army insignia.

    From 1983 to 2018, the border guard units are part of PAP, not PLA. Although PAP is under the command of CMC, and a para-military formation which is essentially a light infantry, it is officially gendarmerie. Except the division sized provincial troop, other PAP units like border guard units are small and scattered along the border, they don't really have their barracks or facilities that are large enough to resemble a military base.
  3. Air Force Brat

    Air Force Brat Brigadier

    Dec 7, 2011
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    These are indeed a classification of aircraft known as "flying boats", and more specifically "air cushion" aircraft,, they have a much greater useful load because they are operated in "ground effect".. in other words operating in "ground effect" maintains the high pressure cushion under the aircraft...

    I would bet they would fly out of ground effect, albeit at a very reduced load, and control could well be slightly compromised as the stability of the "ground effect cushion" would disappear as soon as you lifted out of that ground cushion...

    these a low horsepower "recips" and as such, were not really militarily significant in any regard, but made very handy "run-a-bouts" for patrol usage...

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