TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Two Chinese military aircraft entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Monday afternoon (Dec. 21), marking the 13th such intrusion this month.
A People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Shaanxi Y-8 reconnaissance plane and a Shaanxi Y-9 electronic warfare aircraft flew into the southwest corner of Taiwan’s ADIZ, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND). In response, the military scrambled fighter jets, issued radio warnings, and deployed air defense missile systems to track the planes.
Both the Y-8 and Y-9 are medium-sized, medium-range transport aircraft made by the Shaanxi Aircraft Company. The Y-8 is 34 meters in length and has a 38-meter wingspan, while the Y-9 is 36-meters long with a wingspan of 40 meters.
The Y-8 is fitted with four WJ-6 turboprop engines and has a maximum speed of 650 kilometers per hour, a 10.4-km service ceiling, and a ferry range of 4,800 km. The Y-9 is powered by four WJ-6C turboprop engines and has a maximum speed of 650 km per hour, a 10.4-km service ceiling, and a ferry range of 7,800 km.
For over the past three months, China has been regularly entering Taiwan’s ADIZ, with most sorties occurring in the southwest corner of the zone. In November, PLAAF planes were detected flying into the identification zone a total of 22 times; in October, Chinese military aircraft were spotted in the ADIZ on 22 occasions, including a drone on Oct. 22.
Chinese Y-9 on Dec. 21 (MND photo)
Flight paths of Chinese planes on Dec. 21 (MND image)