China has broadcast footage of its newest aircraft carrier Fujian on CCTV, a state-run television news station.
In the short clip aired on January 2, 2023, an unrestricted view of the aircraft carrier’s deck could be seen, with the electro-magnetic catapult system easily identifiable.
In total three catapult systems were visible in the footage, two in the middle of the deck and one to the side.
According to military website The War Zone, this footage is the first time that the hi-tech catapult system has been seen installed on the aircraft carrier.
Aside from the Gerald R. Ford-class nuclear-powered aircraft carriers being built by the United States, Fujian is set to be the only other carrier with an Electro-magnetic Aircraft Launch System.
The Chinese aircraft carrier was completing mooring tests and has now entered a dry dock before sea trials commence.
The video also showed a mock-up Shenyang J-15 fighter jet at the rear of the aircraft carrier as it was pulled along by two tugboats.
Latest image of China's third and most advanced aircraft carrier – Fujian, three electromagnetic catapults are very clearly to see.— Shen Shiwei 沈诗伟 (@shen_shiwei) January 2, 2024
China Central Television (CCTV) aired a latest interview about Chinese PLA Navy #Fujian #AircraftCarrier. pic.twitter.com/qR7CfKnwMl
The People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) currently operates two other aircraft carriers, Shandong and Liaoning, both of which use the ski-jump takeoff.
In November 2023, catapult testing on board Fujian was carried out at Shanghai’s Changxing Jiangnan shipyard, but footage published of the exercise was unclear due to it being recorded from a distance.
The launch of Fujian is part of China’s aim to strengthen its military forces and compete with the United States.