Their aim is more precise than those of their potential adversaries and they fly longer
A robo-multicoptor that can be a spotter, intelligence and cargo vehicle, as well be able to destroy tanks from an altitude of 1,000 meters, was presented recently at an exhibit at the Kubinka military base near Moscow. It’s spectacular.
But that’s not all! Another Russian drone that could also be used for civilian purposes recently set the world's longest flight record.
The NELK octocopter, with an air-hydrogen fuel cell, spent more than three hours in the air.
During tests in the town of Chernogolovka near Moscow, NELK’s air-hydrogen octocopter, designed in the Chemical Physics Institute of the Russian Academy of Science, set the record for the longest flight in the open air among multi-rotary drones, at 3 hours and 10 minutes. The fuel system that allowed the vehicle to stay in the air so long was developed in cooperation with the Baranov Central Institute of Aviation Motor Development and the United Instrument Manufacturing Corporation. The vehicle lifts a 500-gram payload.
The octocopter weighs 12kg, propulsion is 1.3 kW.
The hydrogen fuel is considered the best, and a number of companies are working on it.
In June 2015, the EnergyOR Technologies Inc reported the world’s longest flight by a hydrogen-powered multi-rotary drone: 3 hours, 43 minutes and 48 seconds. As can be seen in the video posted on the EnergyOR website, the record was achieved in a hangar: the copter didn’t actually fly, but rose to 1.5-meters and hung in the air.
The NELK octocopter was tested in the open air, and flew more than 3 hours in adverse weather conditions: a fitful wind with periods of rain, according to the head of the Solid Body Ionics Laboratory, Yuri Dobrovolskiy. “We switched between autopilot and managed flight. The copter changed altitude and transmitted images and video to the ground. We believe it could fly for 4 hours and 20 minutes in a hangar.”
What a difference!
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