Located in the mountainous Huairou district of northern Beijing, the JF-22 wind tunnel is 4 metres (13 feet) in diameter and can generate airflow speeds up to 10km (6.2 miles) per second, according to a final evaluation conducted on May 30.

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That makes it the largest and fastest wind tunnel in the world, capable of simulating hypersonic flight conditions up to Mach 30, according to the Institute of Mechanics, the owner of the facility.

The tunnel will “support the research and development of China’s space transport system and hypersonic aircraft”, the institute said in a statement on Friday.

By comparison, the Mach 10 tunnel at Nasa’s Langley Research Centre in the United States, a primary hypersonic test facility, has a test section diameter of nearly 0.8 metres.

A larger test section enables researchers to put larger aircraft models or even an entire weapon into the wind tunnel to obtain more accurate flight data.

The JF-22 is integral to goals set out by the Chinese government to be achieved by 2035. By then, Beijing hopes to deploy a fleet of hypersonic aircraft that can carry thousands of passengers into space each year, or reach anywhere on the planet within an hour.

But such aircraft must be able to withstand the extreme heat and pressure of hypersonic flight while maintaining stable flight trajectories and a safe, comfortable environment for passengers.

For more detail: scmp.com

According to the scmp