Footage of a new Russian armed drone, possibly representing a new Sirius unmanned aerial vehicle, has begun circulating online.
A mystery drone was spotted during a test flight at Protasovo airfield, near Ryazan in central Russia.
The Sirius is a new Russian-made high-altitude long-endurance (HALE) drone with a high payload capacity, which makes it an ideal platform for ISR and attack operations.
The new drone, which was first demonstrated at the exhibition in 2019, is equipped with two turboprop engines and has a maximum takeoff weight of 2.5 tons, of which up to 450 kg is the payload. The maximum flight altitude is 7 km, the cruising speed is 180 km/h and an endurance of 40 hours.
Sirius is a derivative of Kronstadt Group’s Orion (Inokhodets) unmanned aerial vehicle. The fixed-wing unmanned aircraft has an increased take-off weight and can carry a bigger payload. It has a length of 9m, a height of 3.3m and a wingspan of 30m.
The base platform can be configured into three different mission variants, including surveillance and reconnaissance, ground attack, and maritime patrol versions.
Russian state media reported that Sirius can carry KAB-100 bombs, FAB-100 high-explosive bombs, RBK-500U free-fall bombs, and ODAB-500PMV fuel-air-explosive bombs, also known as vacuum bombs.