skip to main content

Airshow China 2021: Tengden debuts three-engine Twin Tailed Scorpion A armed reconnaissance UAV

Sichuan Tengden's three-engine Twin Tailed Scorpion A medium-altitude long-endurance UAV seen taxiing to the runway for a flight demonstration during Airshow China 2021. (Wang Yufeng/Tengden)

China's Sichuan Tengden Technology Company (Tengden) officially unveiled the three-engine variant of its medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE)-class TW328/TB001 Twin Tailed Scorpion unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at the Airshow China 2021 aerospace and defence exhibition held from 28 September to 3 October in Zhuhai.

First revealed as an unnamed prototype during its maiden flight in January, the unique three-engine platform was identified by Tengden as the β€˜Twin Tailed Scorpion A'. A production-ready example was used by the company to highlight the type's maturity during flying performances at the event, with the air vehicle demonstrating its ability through low-altitude passes and lazy eight manoeuvres.

Specifications released by the company also confirmed that the new variant has a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 3,250 kg despite using the same 10 m long and 3.1 m tall twin-boom airframe used for the baseline TB001 UAV, which has a lower MTOW of 2,800 kg, with an overall wingspan of 20 m.

Each boom incorporates forward-mounted turbocharged piston engines – reportedly Rotax 914s equipped with three-bladed propellers in a tractor configuration – terminating in vertical tails joined by a high-mounted tailplane. The retractable main landing gear is located immediately aft of the engines.

The main fuselage houses the retractable nose gear, datalink, flight control systems, and mission equipment, with a ventral stabilised electro-optical/infrared turret and provision for an optional synthetic aperture radar module as well as other customer-specified payloads.

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...