Russian firm Kronstadt today announced contracts with several foreign countries for shipment of drones in 2022.
The model(s) of drones or their numbers were not specified in a statement released by the company as reported by Zvezda, the Russian MoD’s TV channel.
However, on May 24, Sergey Bogatikov, CEO of Kronstadt had told Interfax that foreign customers are more interested in the reconnaissance and strike version of the Orion-E drone. “Together with Rosoboronexport, we are negotiating with representatives of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Africa. I will not name specific countries. The Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) collects applications,” Kronstadt top boss had commented.
He added that serial production of these drones for export will start soon. “We are already purchasing components for assembling complexes for starting buyers. We will be able to start deliveries abroad from 2022 - after the launch of a new serial plant in Dubna, but the primary task for us is to meet the needs of our army,” Bogatikov said.
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Components for the drone will be built at a plant in Dubna near Moscow and they will be delivered to Kronstadt in November. First of the drones will be delivered to the customers in 2022.
The UAVs will have a modular design. Equipment, payload and ground components can be customized as per the needs of the customer. These export samples, among other things, will be equipped with satellite data transmission equipment, Bogatikov said today.
Bogatikov’s description of the drone to be export matches with the Orion-E – it has a modular, open architecture. “Recently, we showed a variant with a gyro-stabilized optoelectronic system developed by a company from Belarus - this is a clear example of the integration of a potential customer's equipment into our complex. We can also do with aircraft weapons,” he had said.
Orion-E fitted with a satellite system enables the use and exchange of data with UAVs at any distance from the operator module in almost real time. Data transmission is said to be more stable because there are two channels. The drone can be controlled from anywhere in the world where there is a ground control point created by Kronstadt specialists, and information from the target loads can be received by several consumers at any distance from the UAV.