Built by China Aviation Industry General Aircraft (CAIGA), the TA "Dragon" 600 amphibious aircraft will boast an estimated 53.5 tonne maximum takeoff weight and upper operational range of 5,000 kilometres (more than 3,100 miles), making the aircraft ideal for emergency operations—including firefighting and humanitarian relief efforts—where short takeoff and landing (STOL) capabilities are required. Plus, its seafaring abilities enable the plane to land in remote areas where lakes and other bodies of water are present but where landing strips or airfields may not be.
The plane is still under development, though CAIGA officials are confident that it will be ready for initial flight testing by the end of 2015. Should the Dragon 600 pass its tests, it should enter service shortly thereafter, dethroning Japan's ShinMaywa US-2 (shown above) as the world's largest operational amphibious aircraft. [Aerospace Tech - India Today]