This time the airshow China 2022 took place in Zhuhai, East China’s Guangdong Province. Exhibitors worldwide participated and showcased their new modern products in the exhibition hall. Unnamed Aerial Vehicle (UAVs) was the hot topic at the aerial show due to the performance of military drones in ongoing military conflicts around the world.
Chinese manufacturers have also displayed multiple types of advanced drones. Caihong UAV of China Aerospace of Science and Technology Corp (CASC), an international manufacturer of China’s most comprehensive UAV spectrum, has also displayed its various modern products. The products include CH-3, CH-4, CH-5, and CH-6, and a prototype model of their advanced CH-7 stealth UAV was also in the show.
China’s CH-7 is a modifiedversion based on client’s requirements and modern warfare developments. However, CH-7 was not presented in the airshow 2021 because it was under modifications. Last year, the drone’s chief engineer stated that the public would witness a new type of CH-7 in 2022. Shi Wen, the chief engineer of the CH series drones, informed Global Times at the exhibition hall that the new CH-7 is based on modern technology. According to Shi Wen, it has a 26-meter wingspan, 4 meters longer than the original one. Not only this, but it can take a maximum takeoff weight of 10 tons.
Moreover, its service ceiling is 15 kilometers, whereas the original one was about 10-13 kilometers. Additionally, she said that the new type of CH-7 can fly higher and stay longer in the mission zone. It can be more focused round-the-clock and can monitor the hazardous environment. It can keep detecting hostile targets for a longer time. CH-7 can carry large missiles or guide other weapons to strike high-value enemy targets. CH-7’s technology effectively reduces an enemy radar’s detection range. It can also contain the enemy’s anti-air firepower and improve information-based combat’s effectiveness to meet the demand for high-end UAVs.
In contrast, CH-5 has a wingspan of 21 meters, a service ceiling of 8,300 meters, and a maximum takeoff weight of 3.3 tons. CH-5 serves the coastal area and border regions by carrying out round-the-clock surveillance. This year, Caihong displayed CH-5 for marine service. She said that CH-5 is for missions with complicated sea conditions. Military analysts said sonobuoys are essential for searching for submarines underwater. Recently, US Navy has used US-made MQ-9Bs to test using UAVs for anti-submarine missions.
The CH-5 for marine service comprises four pods to carry sonobuoys. Likewise, it also conducts anti-submarine missions like MQ-NB of the US. Experts revealed that it works like a “submarine hunter” due to its advanced capabilities.
Alas, Caihong UAVs are also involved in civilian services. Caihong also worked with the Geology Investigation Bureau of the Ministry of Land and Resources. The aim was to develop China’s first Caihong UAV aeromagnetic and air-bone radioactive application system.