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Russian Developers Working on Mid-to-Long-Range Combat Drones

© Wikipedia / AlfvanBeemTu-143 Reis
Tu-143 Reis - Sputnik International
Two Russian developers are working on mid- and long-range unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAV) with speeds up to 500 miles per hour, a defense and industrial complex official said Thursday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) –Additionally, the source said Sukhoi Aviation Holding Company (JSC) is developing a heavy-duty long-range Okhotnik-U UCAV projected to travel at the same speed.

"The Simonov development design bureau is conducting experimental work to create a Zenitsa mid-range combat drone with a speed of 800 kilometers per hour," the official told RIA Novosti.

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The defense official explained that the air-launched Zenitsa combat drone was based on the Tupolev Tu-143 Reys (Flight) developed in the 1980s. The ground-launched Okhotnik-U (Hunter) project, meanwhile, is expected to be a tailless aircraft.

Russian drones currently perform reconnaissance and target indication tasks, including Orlan UAVs conducting search and reconnaissance missions in Syria.

Former United Aircraft Corporation chief Mikhail Pogosyan told reporters previously that the 20-metric-ton Okhotnik-U drone would be developed by 2020.

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