China has launched bird-like robotic drones in more than five of its provinces to monitor her burgeoning population. They are all super high-tech surveillance drones.
In recent years, over 30 Chinese military and government agencies have resorted to using drones made to look like birds to mount surveillance.
The exercise is codenamed “Dove” and is being run by Song Bifeng, a professor at Northwestern Polytechnical University in Xi’an. Song, until recently, he was a senior scientist on the Chengdu J-20, which is Asia’s first fifth-generation stealth fighter jet, according to report.
The bird-like drones are mimicking the flapping wings of a real bird and the drones are driven by electric motors. Each drone comes with a high-definition camera, GPS antenna, flight control system and data link with satellite communication capability.
The scale of the deployment is still small, according to Yang Wenqing, who is a member of Song’s team. The researchers believe that the technology has got a great potential for large-scale deployment in the nearest future. Clearly, it has some great advantages to meet the demand for drones in the military and civilian sectors.This is not like an upgrade in the pursuit of China to step up its surveillance game over her citizens. China, in the past, has also employed facial recognition, artificial intelligence, smart glasses and other technologies to monitor its 1.4 billion citizens with the aim of rewarding them based on their behaviours.
The “Doves” also cover the disputed Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in China’s far west, which is native to the Muslim Uyghur population. The region has caused a lot of headache for the Chinese government because of its separatist tendencies.
The bird-like robotic drones can even mix with a flock of birds and still go unnoticed by the real birds and humans too. However, they are not capable of covering large distances with a time span of 30 minutes at speeds of up to 40kph (25mph).
The bird-like robotic drones were developed by a team of scientists at the Northwestern Polytechnical University in Xian, who have reportedly conducted more than 2,000 test flights.
China is being proactive by launching these drones with the aim of protecting its borders. This is also for the purpose of fighting extremism which is gradually cropping up in some provinces.
The good thing is that this technology has fooled the advanced radar system. As such, there are no clashes at all.