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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Global Times

China's GJ-11 stealth drone displays precision weapons at Airshow China 2021

Global Times

By GT Staff reporters in Zhuhai Published: Sep 28, 2021 01:13 AM

China's GJ-11 stealth armed reconnaissance drone will open its weapons bays for the first time and display its capability to carry a large amounts of precision weapons at the Airshow China 2021 in Zhuhai, South China's Guangdong Province, from Tuesday to Sunday. Experts said that the drone will likely carry multiple types of precision ammunitions, including larger ones that were not on display at the air show.

In the exhibition hall of the state-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), scale models of the "20" aircraft family, including the J-20 stealth fighter jet, the Y-20 large transport aircraft and the Z-20 utility helicopter, will be displayed on a giant rotary table in the center, together with the model of a GJ-11 stealth armed reconnaissance drone.

During a preview visit to the exhibition shortly prior to its opening on Tuesday, the Global Times saw the model of the GJ-11 with its weapons bays open.

According to the official model displayed by AVIC, the aircraft's maker, the GJ-11 has two weapons bays, symmetrically positioned between the drone's three landing gears. Each bay has four ammunitions which look like guided precision air-to-ground glide bombs.

This is the first time details on the GJ-11's weapons bays and its payload capability have been revealed to the general public since the first public appearance of the drone at the National Day military parade on October 1, 2019 in Beijing, observers said.

The GJ-11 also belongs to the "20" aircraft family and it is one of the most advanced stealth attack drones, Zhang Xuefeng, a Chinese military expert, told the Global.

The aircraft uses a flying wing design with high stealth capability and has high subsonic cruise efficiency. Despite a small body, it has a long range, Zhang said.

In a mission, the GJ-11 can likely carry multiple types of precision ammunitions, including larger ones that will not be on display at the air show, Zhang predicted.

With the flying wing design similar to the US' B-2 strategic bomber, the drone has strong stealth capabilities, enabling it to sneak deep into enemy territory and launch strikes with weapons hidden in its weapons bays over key hostile targets, military analysts said when it was first revealed.

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