The Chinese military suspended carrier-based jet fighter pilot training for nearly two months after a fatal crash in late April, state media reported on Sunday. The reports also gave further details of the moments leading up to the J-15 jet crash that killed its PLA pilot during a simulated deck landing at an inland base. J-15s are the core jets for China’s aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, and other more advanced domestic carriers reportedly under construction. Fatal crash of Chinese J-15 carrier jet puts question mark over troubled programme One military analyst said resuming test flights after just 50 or so days might pose risks for pilots. First-class PLA pilot Zhang Chao, 29, was practising a landing on April 27 after two rounds of low-altitude flights at sea, Xinhua reported. But the fly-by-wire flight control system malfunctioned on touchdown, causing the J-15 to pitch up by 80 degrees. Zhang ejected but was not far enough above the ground for his parachute to function, and later died of his injuries, state TV reported. In all, 4.4 seconds elapsed between the malfunction and Zhang ejecting, Xinhua said. J-15s “resumed spreading their wings along the Bohai coast on June 16”, Xinhua added, saying the crash did not affect the jet’s development. Macau-based military analyst Antony Wong Dong said any shortcomings in the plane could not have been identified and fixed in a few weeks. How can you tell me that you can have the [J-15’s] problems fixed in 1½ months? Antony Wong Dong, military analyst “After a fatal accident during the test flight of the Su-27 in 1982, the whole flight control system was redesigned and replaced, while the software system became the focal point of review,” Wong said. “How can you tell me that you can have the [J-15’s] problems fixed in 1½ months?” Wong said there could have been a failure in the domestic-made HTY ejection seat because the 4.4-second window would have been more than enough for experienced pilots to eject safely. Jane’s Defence Weekly said it was the first time Chinese state media had reported J-15s using the fly-by-wire fight control system. It was previously thought to have been limited to the newer J-16 strike fighter and J-11D fighter.