The China Central Television released a video footage showing People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy carrier-borne fighter jets taking off and landing back onto the carrier’s deck Thursday.
The night landing is a huge challenge for pilots since it is difficult for them to distinguish signal lights at night, Carrier expert Li Jie was quoted as saying by Global Times news daily Friday.
The night landings marked a huge step in the PLA Navy's push to gain full combat capability. China is now one of the few countries in the world to have acquired such capability, and this was also the first time that state media in China confirmed this information, Li said.
Li said that night battles are a major constituent of modern warfare, and night landing is a critical standard to assess the capability of pilots of carrier-borne fighter jets, and the carrier themselves.