Designer of China's first UAV dies at 101
By Guo Meiping

Wen Chuanyuan, the chief designer of China's first unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), passed away at the age of 101, on October 1, when China celebrated the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

Born in 1918 in central China's Hunan Province, Wen was one of the founders of the School of Automation and Science and Electrical Engineering of the Beijing-based Beihang University.

Wen was a pioneer of China's UAV field by leading the development of the country's first UAV. Named Beijing Wuhao, or Beijing No.5, the UAV was designed based on the Nanchang Y-5 transport plane.

As the commander and chief designer of Beijing No.5, Wen proposed the general technology scheme in 1957, and the UAV completed its first trial flight successfully in February 1959.

Wen was also the leading designer of China's first flight simulator.

(Top image courtesy of Beihang University)