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China seems all set to deploy flying submarines. The Harbin Engineering University has released a video of two prototype drones. The video showcases two versions of the drones named Longbow-1 and Longbow-2 taking off immediately after emerging from under the water.
It is a well-known fact that China's militarisation has been on the rise in the last few years. Those monitoring defence developments closely would know that China is building ships, aircraft and submarines at a rapid pace. It is building defence assets quicker than any other country in the world. China has also been upgrading its technology at a rapid pace.
Now, in what seems to be a world first, China is testing drones that can operate both in the sky and under the water. The idea of a military machine that can take the skies and explore the depths of the ocean has been around for a long time now. The idea first came about during the first world war and was further considered during the second world war.
In fact, some submarine designs were almost finalised for an aircraft carrier submarine. This idea of a submarine was supposed to carry a small fighter or bomber onboard. The submarine would surface for the aircraft to take off and then the submarine could disappear to the depths of the ocean again. This idea, however, was discarded as it was impractical to land an aircraft on a submarine.
Now though, the idea of getting massive air and marine craft to do physics-defying antics has slowly evolved into unmanned warfare and drones. The advantage of using a drone to do dangerous stuff is quite obvious. Firstly, the size can immediately shrink and the risk to life is immediately reduced too. This new drone developed in China is the perfect example.
The state-level Key laboratory of the Harbin Engineering University developed these new engineering marvels. Called the Longbow-1 and Longbow-2, they are two different variants of the sane drone. The Longbow-1 has a fixed-wing design while the Longbow-2 gets a folding-wing design. However, both of them are capable of carrying a payload of one kilogram.
Not much have been revealed about the capabilities of the drones. However, the tests that took place at the Longfengshan Reservoir in Wuchang City showed that the machines are capable of navigating underwater. To get out of the water, it dives deep and suddenly pulls upward. It then uses that upward momentum to get airborne and then it stabilises in the air and flies past.
More details of the new high-tech drone are expected to surface over the coming months.
Thoughts On New Chinese Drone Submarine That Can Fly & Operate Underwater
Without any doubt, the new inter-medium drone gives the Chinese military a capability unlike any other. It is also small in size and that will allow it to escape detection on most types of radar systems. It is quite an interesting machine and it remains to be seen where the PLA will make use of this new invention.