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Drone Swarms as You Know Them Are Just an Illusion—for Now

Liam CobbPhoto by: Liam Cobb Look at all the pretty drones. Hovering above sports stadiums from Houston to Pyeongchang, many hundreds of them have lately sparkled in artful murmuration. On a recentTime magazine cover, 958 drones pixelated the sky. The world record, 1,374 LED-bedazzled microbots, was set by Chinese company EHang UAV in May. So-called drone swarms—the phrase people have taken up with gusto—are having their biggest, buzziest year ever. It’s an evocative word,swarms, and innocuous enough when applied to one ofIntel’s drone light shows. But it’s tinged with alarm—if drones can dance at twilight, they can also attack. Sure enough, a gang outside Denver sent a small fleet to harass FBI agents on a raid earlier this year. In Syria, rebels reportedly sicced a squadron of quadrotors on a Russian base. To the media, both events were swarms. Take comfort, then, in this buzzkill: “The swarm is really an illusion,” says Mac Schwager, an assistant professor at Stanford who studies mul…

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China's New 9x19 Subgun

China's New SMG, the JH16-1 in action on a police training range
Back in March we reported on Chinese SWAT teams operating with modded Type 79 submachine guns. The venerable Type 79 was developed in the 1970s and despite efforts to improve its modularity the guns are showing their age. They may now be supplanted by a new 9x19mm submachine gun.
While the bullpup QCW-05 PDW is sometimes seen a new submachine gun has begun to be fielded with China’s police forces. The JH16-1 was introduced in 2017, unlike the Type 79 chambered in 7.62×25mm Tokarev, the new weapon is chambered in the ubiquitous 9x19mm round.
JH16-1 alongside modded Type 79sPhoto by: via China Defense Blog
The China Defence Blog reports that the new submachine gun weighs in at 2.8 kg or 6.2 lbs unloaded and has a rate of fire of approximately 800 rounds per minute. With an effective range of 200 metres. The new JH16-1 appears to have a polymer lower and an adjustable stock. It feeds from a curved, probably 30 round, magazine – with an MP5-style paddle release. It appears to have an ambidextrous safety/selector lever but is left side charging only.
JH16-1 with optic and transport casePhoto by: via China Defense Blog
It has fixed front and rear sights but also has a full length top rail and shares a passing resemblance to the Heckler & Koch UMP. The JH16-1 is heavier than the older Type 79 submachine gun and also had picatinny rail segments at the 3, 6 and 9 o’clock positions.
Members Guangdong Province police SWAT training with the new JH16-1 9mm submachine gun and a tactical crossbowPhoto by:
The JH16-1 is reportedly produced by the Hubei Jianghua Machinery Co Ltd, incorporated as a private company in 2006, formally state factory 9616, in the Xiangcheng District, Xiangyang. It was recently seen during a South China Special Police special skills drill for members of the press. The Guangdong Provincial Public Security Department held a demonstration on 23rd May where a number of officers were seen armed with the new JH16-1.
Members Guangdong Province police SWAT training with the new JH16-1 9mm submachine gunPhoto by: