Singapore: New Chinese UAV Unveiled
By Wendell Minnick
SINGAPORE — Beijing-based Yotaisc Science and Technology Development Co. unveiled the X200 vertical take-off/landing (VTOL) UAV for the first time at the Singapore Airshow.
Man Yi, Yotaisc’s sales director, said the X200 rotorcraft is capable of autonomous flight and is one of the largest helo UAVs available in China. Yotaisc now has three prototypes, and several foreign countries and companies are looking at procuring it.
With an unusual non-tail design and co-axial dual-rotor, the X200 can carry a 100-kilogram payload at a cruising speed of 93 miles per hour with a maximum endurance of five hours and a maximum altitude of 16,400 feet (5,000 meters).
Maximum speeds can reach 136 miles per hour. A multi-redundant inertial navigation system and global positioning system handle navigation.
The X200 can be outfitted with a variety of payloads. Yotaisc has three gimbal pods developed by a “Chinese Navy lab” capable of conducting a variety of missions, Man said. It can be outfitted with a synthetic aperture radar, 3D laser radar, multispectral imaging and ground penetrating radar.
Yotaisc is focused on the civilian market but has done business with the Chinese military in the past, he said.
The X200 is actually an upgraded variant of an earlier, smaller design, the M28, which the company began manufacturing in 2005.
Twenty M28 aircraft were produced. Two were sold to the People’s Liberation Army and 17 were sold to undisclosed nonmilitary customers inside China, Man said.
Military markets include national land security, battlefield management, search and rescue, emergency command, reconnaissance, and communications relay. Civilian markets include electrical inspections, marine monitoring, disaster monitoring and assessment, agriculture, surveying and mapping, and geophysical prospecting.
The company also produces a light VTOL UAV, dubbed the G3, capable of total autonomous flight.
The X200 has been in development since 2010 and will go on the market in September. The company plans to exhibit the aircraft again at the Airshow China (Zhuhai Airshow) in November.
Yotaisc was established as a private company in 2009, but it began as a “research group” in 1992, Man said.