Sirius Strike UAV undergoes flight tests

Photo by © Kronshtadt Group press service

A video of one of the test flights, presumably the first flight prototype of the twin-engine unmanned aerial vehicle Sirius (Inokhodets-RU) developed by Kronshtadt appeared online on June 1.

Video provided by Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies / @bmpd / https://t.me/bmpd_cast/16058

The Sirius long-range multi-purpose reconnaissance and attack UAV is designed for aerial patrolling, fire and environmental monitoring, topographic mapping and radio relaying. Sirius’ tasks include monitoring of the Arctic zone, aerial patrolling of long objects and large territories, emergency delivery of cargoes over long distances.

The Sirius UAV is an evolution of the Orion (Inokhodets) line of strike drones, which have been used on the Ukrainian front since the beginning of the special military operation. On 16 March 2022, the Russian Ministry of Defence showed footage of the destruction of fortifications and armoured vehicles of Ukrainian armed formations. And on February 28, 2023, it showed strikes on a command and control post of an AFU battalion by a calculation of the Inokhodets UAV. The facility was hit by a guided aerial munition.

“The Russian unmanned aerial vehicles involved in the special military operation carry out reconnaissance, fire correction, as well as combat application of weapons on targets,” the Russian Defence Ministry said in a statement.

It is known from open sources that the take-off weight of the Sirius UAV is two tons, the wingspan is 23 meters, and the flight time is at least 20 hours. The maximum flight altitude of the UAV is 7000 meters, the range is 3000 km, the cruising speed of the vehicle is 180 kilometres per hour.

Work on the first prototype Sirius drone was due to be completed in 2022. The flight test programme was due to start at that time. The first flight was scheduled for May 2022, by the end of the year – to complete the flight test program in full.

The Sirius mock-up was first shown at the Army-2020 forum. A year later, during the military-technical forum Army-2021, the Ministry of Defense signed a contract with the Kronshtadt Group to supply the Sirius UAV (Inokhodets-RU). On February 27, 2022, during an inspection of Kronshtadt Group’s first specialised large UAV production plant in Dubna, Air Force Commander Sergei Surovikin reported to Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu that delivery of these UAVs to the troops should begin in 2023.