The ZBKJ-1 is designed for low-to-medium altitude work, utilizing its optics and sensors arrangement to detail the battlefield below. The aircraft system was debuted in 2013 at the Xi'an International General Aviation Exhibition. Development of the produce was headed by Xi'an Zhongbing Space Technology Company, Ltd.
The system relies on a twin-boom design with rear-set engine placement driving a two-bladed propeller unit in pusher fashion. The mainplanes are fitted over the fuselage and are straight in their general shape. A fixed, wheeled tricycle undercarriage rounds out the physical features of the aircraft. A traversable optics set is mounted at the "chin" position of the aircraft at the front of the fuselage. Overall construction is of lightweight-yet-strong composites.
Released performance specifications of this UAS include a cruising speed of 100 miles-per-hour, a service ceiling of 20,000 feet, and a mission endurance window of eight hours before being recalled. The internal payload capacity is rated at 175 lb.
The air vehicle is launched either through catapult system or under its own power via runway / airfield surface. It is recoverable by way of parachute to retard its fall or by the same runaway / airfield arrangement used to take-off. Ground control operation is up to 136 miles and this can be extended to 250 miles with a communications relay system in place.
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
✓Close-Air Support (CAS)
Developed to operate in close proximity to active ground elements by way of a broad array of air-to-ground ordnance and munitions options.
✓Special-Mission: Search & Rescue (SAR)
Ability to locate and extract personnel from areas of potential harm or peril (i.e. downed airmen in the sea).
✓Intelligence-Surveillance-Reconnaissance (ISR), Scout
Surveil ground targets / target areas to assess environmental threat levels, enemy strength, or enemy movement.
Serving Special Forces / Special Operations elements and missions.
Aircraft inherently designed (or later developed) with an unmanned capability to cover a variety of over-battlefield roles.
Inherent ability of airframe to take considerable damage.
EXTENDED RANGE PERFORMANCE
Capability to travel considerable distances through onboard fuel stores.
Design features ability to fly sans pilot, actions controlled onboard through programming and / or ground-based operator.
Payload supports photographic equipment providing still and / or real-time image / video results.
monoplane / shoulder-mounted / straight
Design utilizes a single primary wing mainplane; this represent the most popular mainplane arrangement.
Mainplanes are mounted at the upper section of the fuselage, generally at the imaginary line intersecting the pilot's shoulders.
The planform involves use of basic, straight mainplane members.
(Structural descriptors pertain to the base NORINCO ZBKJ-1 production variant)
1 x Conventional engine unit set at the rear of the fuselage in pusher arrangement driving two-bladed propeller unit.
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