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Japanese jets intercept Chinese giant drones

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The Japanese Ministry of Defense’s Joint Staff Office has released footage of what it says were interceptions over neutral waters of Chinese new long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicles that were flying toward its border over the East China Sea.

In a series of announcements in August, the Joint Staff of Japan’s Defense Ministry announced that its fighter jets had scrambled jets several times to intercept new types of Chinese medium-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicles.

According to a recent Joint Staff Office news release, pilots of Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) fighters visually identified Chinese drones as the TB-001 and BZK-005, although it did not provide further details other than the observed flight paths of the air vehicles.

The TB-001, most recently nicknamed Twin-Tailed Scorpion, is a strike-capable, reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicle designed by Sichuan Tengden. It is a twin-engine, double-tail drone. It has a maximum takeoff weight of 2.8 tons, a range of more than 3,700 miles, and provisions to carry two 220-pound bombs or missiles.


This aircraft is characterized by a dual tail fuselage design. This design extends two-tail support sections backward on the wing, each connecting a vertical tail, and the tops of the two vertical tails are combined in the form of a flat tail.

As to the second drone, BZK-005 is a medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) drone designed by Beijing University of Aeronautics & Astronautics and Harbin Aircraft Industry (Group) Co., Ltd. SOURCE

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