Inside look at China’s highway strips

Source:Globaltimes.cn Published: 2014-06-10 18:00:00

              Latest News

China test flies warplanes on highway strip
China's air force for the first time test flew warplanes on a highway strip in Central China's Henan Province on May 25.

Flight tests of military aircraft including the third generation of warplanes were held on the Zhengzhou-Minquan highway, according to the military.

A fighter jet takes off from a highway in Central China’s Henan Province on Sunday, the first time that China’s air force test-flew warplanes using highways for take-offs and landings. Ji’nan Military Area Command, which conducted the test, said it enhanced the air force’s capabilities of emergency landing and coordination between military and civilian forces. Photo: CFP

More photos: PLA jets land at combination runway-highway for 1st time
              Stripped down

Highway Strip

Photo: PLA Daily

Length Highway strips are generally more than 2,000 meters long. According to a report from the transport ministry in 2014, China’s highways cover a total 104,400 kilometers as of 2013.
Foundation Highway strips are usually built on foundations tens of centimeters thick and made of high strength material. The foundations for regular highway are five centimeters and made of stone or cement.
Water absorbencyUnlike regular highway asphalt, highway strips are covered with a special bituminous concrete, which is highly absorbent during rain and snow.
SurroundingsHighway strips should be cleared of surrounding obstacles that may impede landings, such as tall buildings or trees.

Highway strip should not be lined with fences, and any traffic barriers should be equipped with wheels for easy removal.

Service zoneAreas for turn-around aprons and service zones are reserved. The service zone on the highway strip is more than three times of the size of a regular service zone, and it can accommodate more than 20 large aircraft. Planes can be refueled, maintenanced and turn in the service zone. The mobile control tower and aircraft navigation radar platform are designed to be used at both ends of the strip.
Road surfaceThe surface should have no cracks and free of stones or metal particles that may get into engines.
AppearanceThe appearance of highway strip looks no different from other highways. The locations of roads used for airstrips are classified information kept by management authorities.

Source: The Beijing News, Nanfang Daily, Ministry of Transport, Globaltimes.cn

For use in case of:

Disaster relief: Aircraft can take off and land on highway strips in case airport runways are inaccessible or destroyed.

Wartime: Highway strip can serve as an alternative airport in case military airports are destroyed.
Source: The Beijing News

          History of Highway Strips

A J-7 fighter jet parks on the Shenyang-Dalian highway on September, 1989, during China’s first highway strip landing drill. The Shenyang-Dalian highway is China’s first long-distance highway. File photo: Xinhua

According to the Nanfang Daily on June 7, China has built more than ten highway strips in recent years in provinces such as Liaoning, Shandong and Fujian. The first highway strip in China’s northwestern area was built in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous region on September 18, 2004.

Web editor: guwei@globaltimes.com.cn
Posted in: Daily Specials