Chinese engineers have refitted a manned utility aircraft into the world's first large transport drone for one of the nation's largest express delivery companies, according to a leading designer involved in the project.
A PAC P-750 XSTOL turboprop aircraft, built by the New Zealand plane manufacturer Pacific Aerospace, has been modified into an unmanned aircraft and has recently begun conducting taxiing tests, said Chen Xiang, director of unmanned aircraft vehicle guidance at Aviation Industry Corp of China's Xi'an Flight Automatic Control Research Institute.
If it works, it will be suruptitously swapped out for the one in North Korea. The cargo capacity will allow a nuclear device to be delivered over the border slowly and quietly at very low altitude without anyone knocking it out because they will be too perplexed to act.
What some people don't know is that they don't know enough to know that they don't know anything
Under a contract awarded by launch customer SF Express in October 2017, Star UAV will supply three AT200 air vehicles for further evaluation and operational testing. The company will partner with SF Express - China's second largest domestic and international courier based in the Guangdong province - to validate air traffic control, autonomous flight and navigation technologies, and safety procedures that are necessary to enable large-scale unmanned air logistics operations within the country.
The company has also signed a contract to deliver up to 50 air vehicles to an undisclosed customer by 2022.
Probably good news for PAC depending how many bits they still make for Chinese built aircraft