Russia is developing a series of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Active work in this area began in 2008, when the conflict with Georgia showed a need for reconnaissance and combat drones, and the Soviet Pchyola (Bee) and Reys (Flight) no longer met modern battlefield needs.
“This theme (of UAVs) must be developed,” said Ovanes Mikoyan, son of the famous creator of the Soviet MiG aircraft. “A pilot need not be always sent to the front line. It is enough to have an operator on the ground, who can fly a drone to the destination, and perform almost all the same tasks as a pilot, albeit a little worse than now, but with lower losses,” said Mikoyan, also an aircraft designer and adviser to the Structural Engineering Centre of the Mikoyan Design Bureau.
In Russia, according to Mikoyan, “all and sundry” are working on the development of drones, with the Mikoyan Design Bureau having its own projects as well.
“We have lots of ideas at the Design Bureau. The important thing is that the state provides support. Then the future will not be only in the company that bears my father’s name, but in the overall Russian aviation industry,” said Mikoyan.