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Cloud-Shadow / Yun Ying

UAV EvolutionThe domestically made unmanned Cloud-Shadow, CH-5 and Wing-loong II UAV models stole the show at the 11th China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition, which closed on 06 November 2016. This was the first time that the cloud shadow UAV appeared at Airshow China. The military drone is made by AVIC Chengdu Aircraft Industrial Group Co.

Cloud-Shadow, a jet-powered unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that was newly revealed at the show, was developed by Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group, a subsidiary of Chinese aerospace and defence firm Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC). The high-altitude and long-endurance drone can be used for military air strikes and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions.

The Cloud-Shadow has widely been viewed as the Chinese version of the "Global Hawk" -- an unmanned spy drone from the United States. However, according to chief designer He Min, the AVIC craft's performance both in velocity and reconnaissance distance is far better than other drones of a similar type worldwide, though it is much smaller and less capable than the Global Hawk.

The drone has a maximum payload of 400 kg and can fly with six weapons (there are four mount points under its wings.) According to Shephard Media, AVIC is offering the option of a standard line-of-sight radio connectivity suite with the UAV, which offers a range of 290 km. The 'Cloud Shadow' UAV is positioned between the US 'Global Hawk' and 'Reaper'. Like the shadow of the cloud, it can quietly sneak into the target area, to achieve rapid reconnaissance, fast combat. "Cloud shadow" UAV is 9.05 meters long with a wingspan of 17.8 meters.

"Compared to the currently widely used turboprop engine, we use the turbojet jet high speed, small windward area, the overall resistance is small, the radar reflection area is correspondingly reduced, high-altitude high-speed performance." according to China Aviation Industry Chengdu Aircraft Industry (Group) Co., Ltd. Vice President Engineer, Cheng Fei Technology Center Director He Min.

At present, the domestic low-altitude low-speed UAV more, mostly hae a speed of 200 km, the maximum flying height of 7,000 meters. The "Cloud Shadow" UAV can cruise at 14,000 meters altitude, can be more effective to avoid short-range air-to-air weapons system. In addition, the "cloud shadow" UAV maximum flight speed of 620 km per hour, 200 km faster than the US MQ-9 "Reaper" UAV - faster speed means it can can quickly strike target.

It can carry suspended 6 weapons, the maximum load of 400 kg. In order to adapt to the information warfare in the war situation is changing, with fleeting needs, "Cloud Shadow" unmanned aerial vehicles are divided into reconnaissance and reconnaissance two configurations.

In the overall structure, the "cloud shadow" UAV modular lightweight structure, the machine can be disassembled into six modules, "UAV decomposition and disassembly in just a few hours after the rapid recovery, re-input Fighting, easy to transfer transport" He Min said.

"Cloud shadow" UAV machine system is divided into two parts of the UAV platform and ground system, the system by "one three machines" configuration, that is, a ground station can control three unmanned aerial vehicles to fight, but also can be flexibly configured according to user needs, configuration features make cloud shadow UAV combat more powerful.

The "cloud shadow" UAV wing has four hanging points, up to 6 weapons can be suspended, the maximum load of up to 400 kg, can be equipped with 50 kg / 100 kg class small precision Guided bombs, missiles, equipped with photoelectric surveillance / aiming devices and synthetic aperture radar (SAR).

The "cloud shadow" reconnaissance type unmanned aerial vehicle intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance tasks, divided into equipped with high-altitude CCD (high-resolution real-time reconnaissance camera), synthetic aperture radar and other reconnaissance load image reconnaissance and equipped with radar reconnaissance and communications Reconnaissance equipment, electronic reconnaissance type, compared to check the type with more excellent reconnaissance performance.

"Cloud shadow" unmanned aerial vehicles through high-resolution cameras and radar, penetrate camouflage, cover objects (such as camouflage into small buildings for air defense weapons, etc.), the target clear imaging; radar reconnaissance can be detected, Km, the frequency range of 0.8 to 18 gigahertz electromagnetic target characteristic information, can effectively detect the target area of ??surface-to-air missile fire control radar, radar and so on, and its direction, positioning, real-time attitude perception.

Communication reconnaissance, the "cloud shadow" the largest detectable, direction, positioning to 200 km of communication signals, the frequency range of 100 to 300 megahertz radio signals, satellite mobile signals and other communication signals, can be determined for the command of the target , Grasp the fighter to provide real-time, beyond the horizon of intelligence information.

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Page last modified: 01-08-2021 14:08:41 ZULU