Washington: The US Navy neutralised a destroyer with swarm drones off California coast. It was part of the US’ swarm drone test, and US magazine Forbes suggests it comes as a warning to China.
US Navy carried out the test a week ago. A senior US Navy official said the test was conducted to evaluate the capabilities of the swarm drones and record how these work alongside other systems. The US Navy has not released details regarding the company which produced the tested drones. However, Forbes claims that Raytheon’s Coyote swarm drone had been used.
Coyote drones can carry explosives as well as is capable of electronic warfare. Previously, the US Navy tested 50 Coyote swarm drones under its Low-Cost (Low-Cost UAV Swimming Technology) mission. The US appears to have shown its rivals, China and Russia, it has advanced technology by tearing apart a destroyer with swarm drones.
Meanwhile, China is working on Anti-Access/Area Denial (A2/AD) war tactics to gain complete dominance over the East and the South China Sea, as well as the Taiwan Strait. China has devised a three-pronged strategy to counter the United States and its allies. It includes islands in the East and the South China Sea, which are 270 nautical miles away from China’s coast. China has deployed anti-ship ballistic missiles, surface-to-air missiles and patrol boats to protect the artificial islands in the region.
China has made preparations to use fighter jets and submarines to protect its interests, which lie at a distance of 270 and 540 nautical miles. Simultaneously, China has planned to use bombers and DF-26 anti-ship missiles for war in waters beyond 540 nautical miles, right till Guam.
The United States has demonstrated its ability to deal a blow to China’s A2/AD strategy by testing the swarm drones. Therefore, the test assumes great strategic importance, and it appears the test will force China to reconsider its tactics.