China has rolled out its latest combat drone for its first public flight, after Beijing released footage of the Wing Loong I-D combat unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), which can carry over 10 different types of weapons (up to 881 lbs) and operate up to 35 continuous hours without refueling.
It is China’s first all-composite unmanned aerial vehicle, which Beijing plans to sell to customers worldwide, according to Sina news.
One of the missiles is China’s BA-7, or Blue Arrow-7 laser guided munition, reported to be one of the most powerful anti-tank missiles in the world according to Chinese media. According to military blog QQ.com, the BA-7 can destroy tanks with armor as thick as 1.4 meters (55″) from nearly 23,000 feet away.
The UAV can also carry the YZ-102A anti-personnel bomb, YZ-212 laser-guided bomb and a 50kg LS-6 mini guided bomb according to Sina.
According to Sina, the Wing Loong I-D has a wider wing span of 17.5 metres (57.4 feet), compared to Wing Loong I’s 14 metres (45.9 feet). In addition, it can carry an external load of up to 400 kilograms (881 pounds), compared to Wing Loong I’s 100 kilograms (220 pounds).
Wing Loong I-D completed its maiden flight at an airport in western China yesterday.
According to CGTN, which released the video of the flight, Wing Loong I-D flew for about 30 minutes before landing smoothly. –Daily Mail