Air Platforms

Divine Eagle UAV spotted at China’s Malan airbase

14 November 2018

Key Points

  • The Divine Eagle HALE UAV has been seen in satellite imagery of China’s Malan airbase, suggesting that the type is now operational with the PLAAF.
  • While the UAV’s sensor fit is unknown, enough surface area and internal space exists to enable a variety of missions.

Commercial satellite imagery captured on 9 November 2018 shows that a Divine Eagle high-altitude, long-endurance (HALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has been deployed to Malan airbase in China’s northwestern autonomous region of Xinjiang, suggesting that the platform may have entered service with the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF).

The imagery shows the UAV parked in front of a hangar at the airbase, which is home to the PLAAF’s 178th UAV Brigade: a unit that is mostly associated with the WD-1K Wing Loong UAV, although various other UAVs, including the EA-03 and the CH-5, have also been sighted at the base.

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