China holds air war to choose its best fighter pilots
China has organised a 10-day air war competition in which over a hundred ace fighter pilots were pitted against each other at speeds of 1,800 km per hour and had to take the right decision in barely 10 seconds.
The second People's Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force "Golden Helmet" award took place after the 10-day air war competition came to an end Nov 29. Eleven air force pilots stood out from the 108 elite and won the award, reported People's Daily.
Jiang Jiayi, one of winners of the first "Golden Helmet" award and chief of a squadron of Chengdu Military Area Command, won the award again and became the first man winning the "Golden Helmet" award twice.
This year's competition also saw the fight between different types of aircraft, the safety distance between two aircraft in unrestricted air combat was reduced by 50 meters, and "face-to-face" peer reviews of pilots' performances were added.
"We cannot win continuous victories without advanced guiding theories," Jiang was quoted as saying.
Jiang said that pilots rely on weapons to win beyond visual range combat and on their techniques to win close combat.
"When two fighter planes are only over 10 km away from each other, and the relative speed is 1,800 km per hour or 1,900 km per hour, the pilots only have slightly more than 10 seconds to respond," he added.
Whether the pilots can make right responses in 10 seconds determines the outcome of the combat.