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China has launched sea trials of new JARI-USV armed Unmanned Surface Vessel.

| 2019

According to pictures released on Twitter, China has launched sea trials of its new armed Unmanned Surface Vessel (USV) called JARI-USV developed by the State Company China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation. In August 2019, China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) had announced the launch of a new catamaran-hulled multirole USV.

China has launched sea trials of new JARI USV armed Unmanned Surface Vessel 925 001 China starts sea trials of JARi-USV Unmanned Surface Vessel. (Picture source Twitter)

A scale model of the JARi-USV Unmanned Surface Vessel was unveiled during the defense exhibition AAD in South Africa in September 2018.

The JARI-USV has a length of about only 15 meters and a displacement of 20 tons, but is capable of conducting air defense, anti-ship and anti-submarine missions thanks to a phased array radar system, vertical-launched missiles and torpedoes, China Central Television (CCTV) reported in February 2019 when a model of the JARI was exhibited at the 14th International Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) in Abu Dhabi. Some military observers called the ship an unmanned "mini Aegis-class destroyer" because of its radar and missiles.

The JARI-USV is armed with different weapons systems, including a foredeck-mounted remote weapon station armed with a 30 mm cannon and laser-guided rockets pod, four-cell vertical launch systems (VLSs) for small surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) mounted amidships, as well as a 324 mm torpedo launchers.

The JARI can be remotely controlled, but also uses artificial intelligence to autonomously navigate and undertake combat activities once it receives commands, the CCTV report said. The drone ship could either work stealthily alone or form a swarm with others to become a formidable power, analysts said.

The JARI-USV is also equipped with electro-optical/infrared turret, navigation radar, steerable searchlight, and communications antennas.

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