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Kronshtadt Group has been contracted by the Russian Defence Ministry to deliver new-generation SIRIUS drones, according to the company’s press service at the ARMY 2021 exhibition. Delivery of SIRIUS – formerly known as INOKHODETS-RU – is scheduled to begin in 2023, Deputy Defense Minister Alexei Krivoruchko said.

SIRIUS is a long-endurance unmanned reconnaissance and attack aircraft developed from the ORION drone. First unveiled at ARMY 2020, it has a full takeoff weight of two tons with a maximum payload of 300 kg. In comparison, the total weight of the ORION is one ton with a payload of only 200 kg. According to the manufacturer, the ORION’s cruise speed is 180 km/h with a flight duration of up to 20 hours, putting its combat range at 1,000 km.

At ARMY 2021, the Defence Ministry also signed a contract with the Urals Civil Aviation Plant (UZGA) for another batch of FORPOST-R UAVs. The first contract for the delivery of 30 UAVs was signed in 2019. FORPOST is a licensed copy of Israel’s SEARCHER 2.