Asian Defence News
JANUARY 17, 2016
Chinese drone technology is effective
The presence of CH-4s in Iraq had been known since March, when an Iraqi blog released images of the aircraft that emerged on social media. One showed three CH-4s under camouflage covers in front of a hangar with what appeared to be a faded Iraqi flag on its door.
The latest announcement confirmed the Iraqi UAVs are armed variants, which are reportedly designated as the CH-4B.
The video and still images released by the MoD showed the CH-4 carrying what appeared to be an AR-1 laser-guided missile under wing and a FT-9 guided bomb under the other.
According to information released at China’s Zuhai Air Show last year, the FT-9 is a 50 kg weapon that can be guided using a combination GPS and inertial navigation system (INS) or fitted with a range of electro-optic sensors for TV, infrared, and semi-active laser guidance. The one on the Iraqi CH-4 did not have an electro-optic sensor, so is presumably the GPS/INS-guided version. IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly DD.13 October 2015
Although the developer has claimed that the AR-1 can be armed with several types of seekers, such as TV, Imaging IR (ImIR), and semi-active laser homing, only the TV guided version was shown to the public. The AR-1 cannot be guided by MMW radar, as many internet claims had erroneously reported, because the radars are too heavy to be carried by UAVs. Despite the developer’s claim that the AR-1 can adopt different guidance systems, only one type of guidance has been confirmed, which is a combination of inertial guidance + satellite guidance (GPS was shown during its debut). Specifications of the AR-1 are:
- Speed: 1.1 Mach
- Weight: 45 kg (99 lb)
- Warhead: 10 kg (22 lb)
- Range: up to 10 km (6.2 mi)
- Guidance: inertial + satellite guidance
- Armor penetration: > 1,000 mm (39 in)
The AR-1 can be used against various targets from individual soldiers to tanks and small boats.
FT-9 guided bomb
FT-9 guided bomb – According to information released at China’s Zuhai Air Show last year, the FT-9 is a 50 kg weapon that can be guided using a combination GPS and inertial navigation system (INS) or fitted with a range of electro-optic sensors for TV, infrared, and semi-active laser guidance.