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Harbin SH-5 (Shuishang Hongzhaji)

China (1986)
National Flag Graphic
Origin: China
Year: 1986
Type: Amphibious Flying Boat / Maritime Patrol Aircraft
Manufacturer(s): Harbin Aircraft Factory - China
Production: 7


Introduced in 1986, the Harbin SH-5 flying boat was only procured through seven total examples.


Detailing the development and operational history of the Harbin SH-5 (Shuishang Hongzhaji) Amphibious Flying Boat / Maritime Patrol Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 6/26/2016. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

The Harbin SH-5 became a locally designed and developed flying boat for the Chinese Navy ("PLAN") during the latter stages of the Cold War (1947-1991). Design work on the type began in 1968 from the abortive Objective 3/17 program which resulted in a working prototype completing its first flight on April 3rd, 1976. However, the development phase proved rather lengthy for the aircraft did not see formal introduction into the PLAN inventory until 1986. Limited serial production spanned from 1984 until 1985 to which just seven examples were ultimately produced. The line still sees operational service today (2015) though it is ready to be superseded by more modern types such as the in-development AVIC "TA-600".

The series is no doubt influenced by Soviet-era flying boats - its hull is boat-like and allows for water landings and take-off with the cockpit set high above the nose with a commanding view of the terrain ahead. The wing mainplanes are of a monoplane design and shoulder-mounted, each fitted with a pair of engines along their leading edges as well as underslung floats for on-water stability. The tail unit features a twin vertical tail arrangement and is fitted atop the fuselage aft. While the SH-5 is primarily a water-based system it retains a wheeled undercarriage for functionality on land. In this way, the series is a true amphibian with excellent maritime capabilities - chiefly versatility and range.

The SH-5 sees a typical operating crew of eight. Its payload capacity can reach up to 22,000 pounds and the airframe is rated for up to 13,000 pounds of armament-carrying. Dimensions include an overall length of 127.6 feet, a wingspan of 118 feet and a height of 32 feet. Empty weight is 55,115 pounds with a Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) listed at 99,200 pounds. Power is served through 4 x "Dongan" WJ5A series turboprop engines developing 3,150 horsepower apiece while driving 4 x four-bladed constant speed propellers with an integrated reverse feature (the Dongan also powers the Xian Y-7 transport). Performance specifications include a maximum speed of 345 miles per hour, a cruising speed of 280 miles per hour, a range out to 3,000 miles, and a service ceiling of 33,630 feet. The avionics fit is comprised of Doppler search radar unit housed in the nose. A Magnetic Anomaly Detector (MAD) boom is extended from the tail section as needed.

In terms of armament, the SH-5 supports various maritime-related weapon systems including Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) torpedoes, Anti-Ship Missiles (ASMs), depth charges, naval mines and conventional drop bombs across four external hardpoints.

"SH-5" has been used to designate the original production models which included the sole prototype and four production-quality forms. This led to the "SH-5A" mark which were essentially SH-5 airframes outfitted with ELectronic INTelligence (ELINT) equipment for the maritime patrol role. At least one of the SH-5 batch was modified to serve in the firefighting role and designated as "PS-5".

One SH-5 is known to have been lost in a crash, this occurring during 2013 and costing the lives of all of its crewmembers.

Any available statistics for the Harbin SH-5 (Shuishang Hongzhaji) Amphibious Flying Boat / Maritime Patrol Aircraft are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).






Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 400mph
Lo: 200mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (345mph).

    Graph average of 300 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the Harbin SH-5 (Shuishang Hongzhaji)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
7
7


  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
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  Compare this entry against other aircraft using our Comparison Tool  
Global Operators:
China
Historical Commitments / Honors:

Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.
Measurements and Weights icon
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Harbin SH-5 (Shuishang Hongzhaji) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
8


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
127.62 ft


Meters
38.9 m


Dimension
WIDTH


Feet
118.11 ft


Meters
36 m


Dimension
HEIGHT


Feet
32.12 ft


Meters
9.79 m


Weight
EMPTY


Pounds
55,116 lb


Kilograms
25,000 kg


Weight
LOADED


Pounds
99,208 lb


Kilograms
45,000 kg

Engine icon
Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
4 x Dongan WJ5A turboprop engines developing 3,150 horsepower each.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
345 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
555 kph


Knots
300 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
2,955 mi


Kilometers
4,756 km


Nautical Miles
2,568 nm


Performance
CEILING


Feet
33,629 ft


Meters
10,250 m


Miles
6.37 mi


Performance
CLIMB RATE


Feet-per-Minute
1,800 ft/min


Meters-per-Minute
549 m/min

Supported Weapon Systems:

Graphical image of an aircraft aerial torpedo
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Armament - Hardpoints (4):

Variable: Up to 13,000 pounds of stores including torpedoes, Anti-Ship Missiles (ASMs), depth charges, naval mines, and conventional drop bombs across four underwing hardpoints.
Variants: Series Model Variants
• SH-5 - Base Series Model; sources vary on exact numbers completed.
• SH-5A - Dedicated Maritime Patrol Platform; conversions of existing SH-5 models for the role; three examples.
• SH-5B (PS-5) - Firefighting variant; example converted from existing SH-5 airframe.