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How advanced are the avionics of the Russian-made S-70?

Hsmilitarycom: UAV Sukhoi S-70 Hunter is made according to the "flying wing" scheme without tail. In the design of the device, special materials and coatings are widely used, due to which the RCS of the "drone" is significantly reduced.

UAV Sukhoi S70 Hunter okhotnik

The machine is capable of performing both reconnaissance missions - for these purposes it is equipped with optoelectronic and radio equipment, as well as strike missions. 

The number 7 indicates the theme number in the design office. At the same time, the number 7 is lucky for the design bureau and the aircraft it created. 

S-70 is also a certain symbolism, apart from the fact that this is the serial number of the topic in the design bureau. The number 7 is generally quite happy for Sukhoi Design Bureau aircraft, Su-7, Su-17, Su-27, Su-57 aircraft.

UAV Sukhoi S70 Hunter okhotnik

The terms of reference for the strike UAV was approved by the Russian Ministry of Defense in the first days of April 2012. On July 6, 2012, information appeared in the media that the Sukhoi company had been selected by the Russian Air Force as the lead developer. 

Also, an unnamed source in the industry reports that the strike UAV developed by the Sukhoi company will simultaneously be a sixth-generation fighter.

Russia has been wanting for years to get a UAV that would be comparable to the American ones or even better. 

This is how the Skat project appeared - a large reconnaissance and attack drone, which was previously developed by the Mikoyan and Gurevich Design Bureau and Klimov OJSC. 

Estimated maximum takeoff weight - 20 tons. The maximum speed is approximately 850 kilometers per hour. But the matter did not go further than the layout: now the project, apparently, is frozen.

Skat can be considered the Russian answer to the American X-47B and the predecessor of Okhotnik. Both machines are made according to the "flying wing" aerodynamic scheme and were created with an emphasis on stealth and versatility. 

UAV Sukhoi S70 Hunter okhotnik

However, only the S-70 was destined to survive and make its first flight: the Okhotnik first took to the skies on August 3, 2019. 

The aircraft under the control of the operator performed several overflights of the airfield and made a successful landing.

Information appearing in open sources, most likely, has little in common with reality. For example, sometimes the maximum speed of the "Hunter" is indicated at 1400 kilometers per hour, which runs counter to the capabilities of the "flying wing" aerodynamic scheme: if the device were made supersonic, its design would be more like that of a fourth or fifth generation fighter. 

We saw similar performance overestimations at one time in the example of the fifth-generation Su-57 fighter, which journalists endowed with some kind of "superpowers."

UAV Sukhoi S70 Hunter okhotnik

Then it turned out that the potential of the machine is somewhat more modest: for example, the aircraft can carry not ten missiles in the internal compartments, but rather six.

One thing is certain: the S-70 turned out to be very large. This is confirmed by a new photo, in which the device can be seen against the background of fighters, in particular the Su-57. 

The picture was taken during a demonstration of the car to Russian President Vladimir Putin on May 14, 2019 at the airfield of the 929th State Flight Test Center named after V.P. Chkalov. 

Since that time, little has changed. In addition to the fifth-generation fighter, there are other Su-brand fighters nearby: as you can clearly see, the S-70 has a larger wingspan or is comparable to them with a slightly shorter length.

In other words, in terms of its dimensions, the Okhotnik roughly corresponds to a light fighter, which, of course, is a lot for a drone. However, this cannot be considered as a disadvantage, especially since the American Northrop Grumman X-47B has similar dimensions.

Little is known about the capabilities of the Russian UAV. Earlier, information appeared in open sources that the S-70 avionics equipment includes an information and control system, an automatic control system, equipment for interfacing with general facility equipment, a system for monitoring and diagnosing onboard equipment, and an inertial satellite navigation system.

The performance characteristics of the UAV are kept secret by the military department, while in the Russian media you can find information that the maximum flight range of the drone is 3.5 thousand km, the maximum speed is 920 km/h, the flight altitude is up to 10.5 km. Without refueling, the UAV can stay in the air for more than a day.

The on-board radio-electronic equipment of the UAV consists of an information and control system, a radar complex, an automatic control system, a control and diagnostic system for on-board equipment, and an inertial satellite navigation system.

The radar complex and communication system make it possible to use the S-70 to expand the radar field of other combat aircraft and remote target designation. Thanks to this, it becomes possible to use long-range weapons without their carrier entering the enemy air defense coverage area.

However, the most mysterious and little-known part of the "Hunter" is the composition of the weapons. It is assumed that the UAV will carry guided missiles, guided and unguided bombs. 

Part is placed in the bomb bay of the aircraft. There is information that the S-70 will be equipped with modular guided bombs developed by the Tactical Missiles Corporation.

In particular, powerful and high-precision planning bombs 9-A-7759 "Thunder". Their weight and size models have already been dropped from the heavy Okhotnik UAV.

UAV Sukhoi S70 Hunter okhotnik

Although the Hunter was remotely controlled by a pilot during testing, it is a fully robotic UAV that can autonomously perform operations.

Thanks to the on-board artificial intelligence system, the drone is able to dynamically respond to changing circumstances and produce a predetermined function. 

Here, however, problems may arise related to the methods of combat operations and the tactics of controlling UAVs at long distances in oversaturated airspace, where manned vehicles and other forces are present. But the creators are still thinking about their decision, apparently.

If the Okhotnik works in conjunction with the Su-57, it will be able to perform reconnaissance and distraction functions, and conduct electronic warfare.

 In this case, the giant drone is able to penetrate enemy airspace, interfere with the operation of radars and signal transmission, thus opening a "window" for missiles and manned fighters.

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