In a big development, China has started commercial production of its CH 5 Rainbow drone. The CH5 is touted to be a rival to the US unmanned aerial vehicle MQ 9 Reaper. Interestingly, the reaper can even attack targets on the ground. Wang Song, an associate professor with the school of aeronautic science and engineering at China’s Beihang University, has confirmed the development, according to news agency PTI. Here are some of the must know facts about China’s CH 5 Rainbow drone:-
1- According to Wang Song, the drone equals that of the US General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper but at around half the cost. The CH 5 may come in at less than half of the price, accordng to Wang.
2- On July 14, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported that mass-production model of China’s unmanned aerial vehicle CH 5, or “Rainbow 5”, completed its trial flight in north China’s Hebei Province. State-run CGTN TV also showed a video of the CH 5 destroying targets.
3- It can conduct reconnaissance, surveillance, patrol, target positioning and strike missions, Shi Wen, chief engineer of the Rainbow drone project at the China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics confirmed.”We’ve made several modifications after its debut, and its comprehensive functions are among the world’s best,” Shi Wen claimed.
4- The CH-5 has a wingspan of 21 meters and is capable of carrying up to 1,000 kg of equipment. It can stay in the air for 60 hours with a range of more than 10,000 kilometers, Shi said.
5 – The CH-5 can also be used for civilian purposes such as resource surveying, marine environmental protection, disaster survey, marine law enforcement and emergency responses, Shi said. “We will conduct more trial flights and might add fine changes to meet needs of various customers. We believe it will be a success in domestic and international markets,” he added.
US Reaper or Predator B
United States Reaper, or Predator B, was the world’s first unmanned aerial vehicle that could attack targets on the ground. At $16.9 million, it is the world’s most expensive drone.