One of the most talked about an upgrade Russian Armed Forces was the problem with the equipment of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Especially since even the current state of the lag in equipment this kind of technology from leading Russian Armed Forces of course completely.
Steps to eliminate this lag (namely, cooperation with Israel) cause a stormy debate and a series of questions on the adequacy of the decisions taken.
First we need to note the relevance of this type of technology and assumptions on which the equipment of the armed forces of global UAV complexes with various mission now — a stable trend. It’s not that the topic is considered prestigious drones. Tasks of conducting surveillance and reconnaissance — the main function of similar devices, which is unrealistic to solve by other means. All that matters is the ability to mass equipping even small tactical units «all-seeing eye in the sky», significantly raise awareness of the enemy.
With all of this role manned aerial reconnaissance uniformly reduced. First, as unmanned aircraft piloted even cheaper. Price increases of modern combat aircraft, the costs of training pilots are comparable to the price of the aircraft — and pilots are converted into such a «piece goods» as their planes. When identical functionality UAV itself at least an order of magnitude cheaper operator training even cheaper and easier than training a pilot, and the loss of the device does not lead to the loss of the operator. Vpribavok to this lack of people on board to reduce the size of the UAV and the means — to reduce vulnerability and stealth implementation.
If we talk about cooperation with Israel — not enough who remembered what specifically prompted the Ministry of Defence on a similar step. Although the background perfectly known.
In the Russian Union had a great experience the creation of tactical unmanned aircraft and tactical purposes (Tupolev Tu-143 «Flight», its modification of the Tu-243 «Reis-D» and Tu-141 «Swift»). In fact, the only complex operational designation was «A Story» with unmanned vehicle «Bee», intended for airborne troops.
But complex «Flight», put into service at the end of the 1960s, has a «convoy» of 12 cars (including large MAZ) and 1,200-pound, flying at a speed of 900 km / h jet drones. Despite the fact that, say, Syria used it right up to 2003, without losing any of launches per acre 1st unit, the complex has a number of limitations. Not counting indicated above massive complex composition — is giving the results of exploration (airborne), only 45 minutes after the return of the drone (after printing and gluing acquired photo). Effectiveness of the system in the criteria are of the highest mobility of forces and means of modern warfare, causing huge uncertainties — the current target will not wait until the film is manifest.
«A Story» has been a more modern look and is able to transmit the video signal to the control in real time. But this is what said about the complex intelligence chief Colonel Valery Airborne Yakhnovets under management «Story-PD» was used in Georgia: «Together with the complex group arrived in 6 cars with experts, and they were preparing to launch the unit for more than 3 hours. As a result, the first drone fell to the ground, almost taking off, and second, launched already on Georgian base in Senaki, not allowed to see our same column of 10 armored vehicles: It is not good for the image we have hardly found only 5 cars. With all this Georgian UAV flew hard for our antiaircraft altitudes and «Bee» — smallish so that it seemed possible to get a slingshot and «growl» with all this as APCs. So that the efficiency of the complex zero and airborne troops do not need it. «
Surprising that a similar assessment of capabilities technology has led to the idea of cooperation with Israel? Especially since Vladimir Shamanov, shortly before the mission to the post of commander of the Airborne put on the problem of meeting with the producers of unmanned systems. Noting the exorbitant price (only the development of «Story-PD» and «Tipchak» MOD cost 400 million rubles) and «no» their effectiveness, Vladimir A. asked industry representatives to offer solutions prepyadstviya.
Industry invited «cheap mini-UAV.»
— Under what tasks? — Shaman said, and heard «observation», explained that the user such a complex — arms commander need not just a picture, and a digitized map of the area, so, taking the coordinates of targets, working on the principle of «saw — hit.» But none of that none of those present offer failed. In general, the «cost» of proposals and more have been reported.
Evaluating the decision to cooperate with Israel should be, but consider two more nuance. In 1-x, at the time the customer (RF MoD) no discernable technical project developers did not give. And that was made («Story-PD» and «Tipchak») — is only funded programs from the 80s, which reflect the view of UAVs since. Border Service, the FSB, the Interior Ministry and Emergency Situations Ministry, with a clearer view of them as necessary equipment, which is consumed Russian UAV.
In-2, cooperating with foreign companies in such a sensitive area as reconnaissance and communications technology should seriously assess risks based on the beliefs of security. For example, all Israeli military products requiring positioning, navigation has except navstarovskoy other means (than avoiding dependence — military and political, including — from working groups GPS), and this in spite of the «strategic friendship» with the U.S.. Pograntsy FSBshniki and should take only Russian technique because technical experience opposition from various foreign intelligence services in their daily. An idea of what can turn parts of foreign manufacture, derived from the knowledge that we are in export laying technique. A foreign UAV can begin to «work for the developer.»
But since 2009, almost everything has changed. It should say that in recent years have grown new Russian manufacturers of unmanned vehicles. First, it’s commercial and aviation companies operating on the orders of civilian organizations. Such tasks as monitoring sites and facilities, monitoring power lines, search missions, aerial photography — very necessary for civilian market. And there is a requirement in a similar technique, allowed large quantities of cool Russian aircraft professionals to use their knowledge in their specialty. Such companies as «Zala Aero», «ENIKS», «Aerokon», «Radar MMS», «Irkut Engineering» and others, not only address the needs of businesses and departments of the Russian Federation, and successfully promote the products on external markets.
So for example, on March 14 this year, an agreement was signed between the company «Irkut Engineering» (daughter aviakontserna «Irkut») and the Government of Vietnam to develop UAV easy class. Under the contract, at the end of the development system, the Russian side will help Vietnam deploy drones creation. This company produced vehicles «Irkut-10», supplied to the Department of Defense of Belarus.
Incidentally, in the same Belarus works very exciting CB «indels», which reached great success in the development of UAV helicopter type. Based on the 558 th Aviation Repair Plant OJSC «AGAT — Control Systems» with «indels» preparing to release a mini-UAV UAV UAV close deeds and short range; devices are being developed for medium and long range. It is a pity that the cooperation with the Belarusian company not being Russian Defense Ministry. Unlike holding «Russian Helicopters» elected prime contractor for the UAV helicopter type «indels» has a number of ready-made and well-selling models in the lightweight class. Not only do the UAV, and navigation and communication made to the database. In my opinion, a similar cooperation would be preferable to adapt Austrian Camcopter S-100, is made in Rostov-on-Don, the needs of the Russian authorities.
Exciting development of Istra Experimental Mechanical Plant. For example, complex staging drone electronic jamming, able to work without the use of satellite GLONASS / GPS navigation system using inertial and radiomayakovuyu system for precision landing. UAV complex series «Istra» yet have little combat radius — 250 km., But the factory is planned to master the production of piston aircraft engine rhythm that will allow devices to create greater range and autonomy. EW equipment represented by a set of compact interchangeable jammers for oppression: radio systems, satellite navigation receiver, radar systems, air defense systems, municipal identification «friend or foe», satellite telephony, radio-relay links; in the version counter air defenses capable of producing several hundred infidels purposes. The plant also produces automatic control and landing UAV its development.
RF RosHydromet long UAV uses of the Kazan ‘ENIKS. » Apparatuses «Aileron-3 ‘were used at polar stations» North Pole «and» Aileron-10 «in the past year has passed tests on Svalbard. Also, these devices uses the FSB Russia.
Roscomnadzor will use UAV SPC «NELK» to ensure radio control ether. Devices companies will participate in the tender for the ROC Ministry of Defence.
In the first quarter of this year completed preliminary tests UAV «Orlan-30» Development LLC «Special Technology Center» (STC), the results of it will be finalized and submitted to the state tests in favor of MO. Estimated duration of the flight apparatus is 10-20 hours depending on the weight load motivated, with a starting weight of only 27 kg., Altitude 4500 m and the ability to take off and landing «on an aircraft.»
List of events in the field of UAV can go on and on. But in general we can say that the Ministry of Defence finally common sense prevailed, and working with scientific and industrial enterprises conducted by the scheme, which precedes the development of requirements for procurement decisions. It turned out that Russian companies are able to create decent standards, if they have an idea of the form of the final product. At the moment, we are working with the standards of different companies on the basis of universally recognized preparatory tests promising.
It should be noted awareness of the need of heavy and medium helicopter type UAV in the Fleet. It is curious that the competition could present their projects not only «Russian Helicopters» (eventually won the competition) and the St. Petersburg company «Radar MMS». She spoke with his GSV-500, having interesting properties for a payload (up to 180 kg.) — It is fundamental to use the Fleet.
Also encouraging fact drone shock tests, which will be held later this year. Let me remind you that the draft shock UAV «Scat» was worked on MiG (more here), and even full-scale model was demonstrated at the MAKS-2007. Although the prime contractor on the shock UAV elected AHK «Sukhoi» touched on «Scat» will be applied in the development of machine «Sukhoi» and RAC «MiG» will participate in these studies.