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Soar Dragon
Role HALE unmanned aerial vehicle
National origin People's Republic of China
Manufacturer Guizhou Aircraft Industry Corporation
Designer Chengdu Aircraft Corporation
Status Under development
Primary user People's Liberation Army Air Force

The Guizhou Soar Dragon, (Script error) is an unmanned aerial vehicle of the High-Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) type, featuring an unusual joined, tandem wingplan. As of 2015 it is being developed by the People's Republic of China for reconnaissance and possible anti-shipping missions.

Design and developmentEdit

The Soar Dragon, designed by Chengdu Aircraft Corporation and constructed by Guizhou Aircraft Industry Corporation for service with the People's Liberation Army Air Force, was originally displayed as a model at the Zhuhai Air Show in 2006.[1] Optimised for long-endurance missions at high altitude, the aircraft features an unusual tandem, joined wing platform.[2] Except for the wing, the Soar Dragon is similar in appearance and mission to the Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk operated by the United States Air Force.[2]

Large by the standards of UAVs, the Soar Dragon's joined wing allows for a more rigid, less flexible wing planform than other configurations, with benefits said to include an increased lift-to-drag ratio and less complex flight controls than a HALE UAV with a conventional wing would require.[1] The aircraft is powered by a Guizhou WP-13 turbojet engine, a developed copy of the Soviet Tumansky R-13; it is anticipated that a newer, improved engine, will be installed in production aircraft.[1] The air intake for the engine is mounted atop the fuselage, with the engine itself mounted in the rear of the aircraft.[1]

Operational historyEdit

The Soar Dragon is not known to have yet conducted its maiden flight, however it is undergoing radar cross section and other electromagnetic tests in anticipation of flight testing.[1]

In service with the PLAAF, the primary mission of the Soar Dragon is expected to be aerial reconnaissance, but it is anticipated that the aircraft will also be fitted with sensors suitable for designating naval vessels for targeting by anti-ship ballistic missiles and cruise missiles.[2]

SpecificationsEdit

Data from AirForces Monthly[1]

General characteristics
  • Crew: None
  • Length: Script error
  • Wingspan: Script error
  • Height: Script error
  • Powerplant: 1 × Guizhou WP-13 turbojet, Script error thrust

Performance

  • Cruise speed: Script error
  • Range: Script error
  • Combat range: Script error
  • Endurance: 10 hours
  • Service ceiling: Script error
  • Thrust/weight: 5.8

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit


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