Chinese navy deploys new VTOL UAV
SOUTH CHINA SEA - An image released by Chinese media shows what appears to be a Sea Cavalry SD-40 vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) being deployed with the People’s Liberation’s Army Navy (PLAN): a development that suggests the platform is either being trialled by or has already entered service with the Chinese navy, reports Richard D. Fisher Jr., for Janes.
The Intelligent Aerospace take:
March 5, 2019-It's not every day that the Chinese military shows off a bit of hardware. Late last month, China Military Online released a photo of a fixed wing VTOL UAV taking off from the helicopter deck of a navy destroyer, but did not elaborate on any technical detail. From the photo, it is evident that there are eight propellers for lift, plus a larger propeller at the rear for thrust.
According to Chinese military Online, "Chinese military observers noticed the drone shares many similarities to the Sea Cavalry SD-40, a VTOL fixed-wing drone developed by Xiamen Han's Eagle Aviation Technology Co Ltd and displayed in various exhibitions."
Tensions in the South China Sea have been rising as the Asian power has been building man made islands to bolster territorial claims. News Corp's News.com.au reported today that Filipino fishermen have been driven away from traditional fishing grounds by Chinese boats. On the same day China released the photograph, United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was in Manila to assure Philippine president Rodrigo Dueterte that the U.S. would defend the country if attacked by China.
Jamie Whitney, Associate Editor
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