China has conducted the first flight test of a locally developed unmanned helicopter in a plateau region.
The aircraft’s developer, Aviation Industry Corp of China (AVIC), conducted the test of its AR-500C prototype helicopter at the Daocheng Yading Airport, the highest civilian airport in the world.
During testing, the AR-500C completed multiple tests such as climbing, hovering and other manoeuvres in 15 minutes.
This unmanned aerial vehicle is expected to be deployed in the China-India border region to offer logistics support and armed reconnaissance missions, Global Times reported quoting defence analysts.
The publication further reported that AVIC conducted the maiden flight of the unnamed system in a low-altitude region earlier this year.
The latest test demonstrates the AR-500C’s capability to operate on all types of terrain.
In a statement released in May, AVIC claimed that the system can be used for reconnaissance and communication missions.
It can also be used for electronic disruption, target indication, fire strikes, nuclear radiation and chemical contamination reconnaissance, as well as cargo delivery.
The latest flight test demonstrated that the AR-500C can carry a payload of 80kg for more than five hours.
Accordingly, the helicopter drone is capable of delivering critical daily supplies of food for more than 30 people.
A military expert told the Global Times that the AR-500C can be a powerful addition to PLA arsenal.
This testing comes as Indian and Chinese armed forces are engaged in a border deadlock at high elevations near Ladakh.
Earlier this month, the two countries agreed to ease tensions at the border by accelerating the disengagement of troops.