China clamps down on exports of drones and supercomputers

The export controls will come into effect on Aug. 15

China plans to limit exports of advanced drones and supercomputers for national security reasons.

The new export controls on certain drone and high-performance computing technologies will come into effect Aug. 15, Chinese government regulators said Friday. Affected vendors will have to apply for a government permit to ship their technology outside China.

The regulations target more advanced drones that can be flown for at least an hour, "beyond the natural sight of the operator" and function more as an unmanned aerial vehicles.

Shenzhen-based DJI, a major Chinese builder of drones, seems confident the new export controls won't disrupt its business.

"The recent restrictions will not impact any of our products, which are focused on the consumer sector," DJI said in an email on Monday. The company's Phantom 3 drone, for instance, can travel up to 2 kilometers from the pilot, and is designed to fly for 23 minutes on a full battery charge.

As for the restrictions on high-performance computers, China's upcoming export controls target machines with a running speed greater than 8T flops (floating-point operations per second) -- the collective processing power of about four-and-a-half PlayStation 4s.

China is currently home to the world's fastest supercomputer, with a performance of over 33,000 Teraflops. And the country is building more supercomputers, some of which are using homegrown chips.

In a posting on a ministry's website, Chinese regulators said no more abut why the export controls were needed, other than to "maintain national security."

Both drones and supercomputers, however, can be used for military purposes. In fact, earlier this year, U.S. authorities accused four Chinese supercomputing centers of deploying Intel-powered hardware to conduct nuclear weapons testing.

In response, U.S. government agencies forced Intel to stop selling its Xeon processors to the Chinese supercomputer builders.

The Chinese parties, however, have rejected the U.S. accusations.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags High performanceroboticsregulationhardware systemsgovernmenttrade

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?