China’s CASC CH(Cai Hong)-5 / Rainbow 5 unmanned aerial vehicle completed its trial flight in Hebei Province, Ministry of National Defense has reported.
The CH-5 unmanned aerial vehicle can conduct reconnaissance, surveillance, patrol, target positioning and strike missions, according to its developer. The drone is developed by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) and was unveiled during Airshow China in November 2016.
“We’ve made several modifications after its debut, and its comprehensive functions are among the world’s best,” said Shi Wen, chief engineer of the Rainbow drone project at the China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics.
“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.
The Rainbow 5 has a payload capacity of 1000 kg, a maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) of over 3 tons, a service ceiling of 10 km. The CH-5 has a wingspan of 21 meters and can stay in the air for 60 hours with a range of more than 10,000 kilometers.
Thanks to shared data link it can cooperate with CH-3 and CH-4 drones. It conducted its maiden flight in August 2015. The drone can carry up to 24 missiles at a single time. There are also plans to extend its endurance and range to 120 hours and 20000 km, respectively.
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.