skip to main content

Paris Air Show 2023: AVIC unveils Wing Loong-X UCAV

A 1:10 scale model of the AVIC Wing Loong-X (WL-X) displayed at the Paris Air Show 2023. (Janes/Sam Wise)

Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) has unveiled a new variant of Wing Loong series of medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) at the Paris Air Show 2023, held from 19 to 25 June.

The company presented a 1:10 scale model of the Wing Loong-X (WL-X) unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) with four underwing hardpoints under each mid-mounted wing surface ending in upswept wingtips.

The UCAV features a bulged nose for the provision of satcom, radars, a ventral electro-optic/infrared (EO/IR) turret, a V-tail, two canted ventral fins, and a rear-mounted turboprop engine driving a five-bladed propeller, among others. No further information on specifications has been released by the company.

According to Janes analysis, the wingspan of WL-X is about 14.5 m and its length is 26.1 m, suggesting a longer fuselage and lower aspect ratio wings compared with that of Wing Loong-10A (WL-10A). The wing features straight wings spanning till mid-section followed by tapering towards the outboard section. The shortening of the wingspan with straight wings till mid-section is suitable to carry heavier payloads.

China National Aero-Technology Import & Export Corporation (CATIC) has revealed the variant WL-10A as an electronic warfare (EW)-capable variant of Wing Loong-10 (Pterodactyl 10), initially dubbed ‘Cloud Shadow'.

The WL-10A is a characterised high-altitude and high-speed electronic reconnaissance unmanned aerial system (UAS). The UAS has four UAVs and two ground control stations (GCSs). Each GCS includes a central control system, a dynamic light scattering device, a global descriptor table register, and a differential Global Positioning System (GPS).

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...