In an important step toward tackling with overwhelming air pollution China tested domestically-produced drone aircraft designed to disperse smog on Saturday, March 8, 2014. This unmanned aircraft helps disperse smog by spraying chemicals that freeze pollutants and make them fall to the ground.
The manufacturer, the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), has already carried out about 100 hours of tests flights. The drone has a paragliding wing which allows the vehicle to carry three times more weight than the fixed-wing version.
According to the chief executive of AVIC, Ma Yongsheng, the drone can carry 700 kilograms of smog-clearing chemicals. He added that controling and landing is easy enough to make it suitable for use at airports and ports.
Almost all Chinese cities monitored for pollution last year failed to meet state standards. The environment has emerged as one of Beijing's key priorities amid growing public disquiet about urban smog, dwindling and polluted water supplies and the widespread industrial contamination of farmland.
Compared to other methods for spreading catalysts, the use of drones will reduce risks and cut costs, Xinhua reported.
Featured image: Smog over Bejing, China. NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, LANCE MODIS Rapid Response.
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