A new Russian drone with advanced capabilities that make it ideal for reconnaissance missions is due to enter mass production next month, Sputnik News reported Friday. The S-300M Burevestnik, or Stormbringer, drone is small and lightweight, and it comes with a laser homing system, among other features.
The new unmanned aerial vehicle, as drones are formally called, is expected to be unveiled during MAKS, an international aviation forum held Aug. 25-30 in Zhukovsky, Russia. “The main objective of MAKS is to demonstrate achievements of Russian high tech and receptiveness of the domestic Russian market to joint projects with foreign partners,” according to the show’s official website.
“Some prototypes of aircrafts and combat systems as well as experimental units that for one reason or another cannot be shown abroad, are demonstrate [sic] exclusively at MAKS,” it adds.
The Stormbringer was developed by the Unmanned Aerial Systems design bureau, Sputnik reported. “The S-300M is extremely versatile, ideal for air reconnaissance missions and for observation of major installations in any weather,” Vladimir Tolokontsev, an engineer with Aviakor, a Russian aviation plant, said. He added that it could withstand winds of up to 15 meters per second, or 33.5 miles per hour.
The drone also has a system which automatically jettisons wings in the event of a crash, reducing potential damage to the craft.
Russia’s drone market has been described as a growing sector, with an estimated 30 Russian companies working on developing unmanned aerial vehicles. Several models of Russian drones have been spotted in Ukraine, where they can be used to gather information on enemy movements and positioning. Drones are also increasingly used as part of Russia’s Northern Fleet, bolstering the country’s military presence in the Arctic.
The Russian military has also developed a “microwave gun” that can disable drones and warheads, the Russian-owned United Instrument Manufacturing Corp said in June. It is said to have a range of roughly 6 miles.