ZALA Lancet - Drone Fighter

2021-05-13

ZALA Lancet - Drone Fighter

Unnamed drone

The new drone doesn't even have a name yet. In the video, it is called the "Lancet - 3 Drone Strike Complex", but this is the fantasy of a 3D artist. With a real drone fighter, the Lancet barrage munition has almost nothing in common — neither the size, nor the mass, nor the guidance system, nor the warhead, nor the power plant, nor the duration of the flight, nor the concept of application coincides. For example, the warhead of the "Lancet-3" 3 kg, the fighter jet 10 kg. The duration of the flight of the "Lancet" is 40 minutes, and the fighter jet can be in the air for about 12 hours. The Lancet is fully electric, and the fighter is equipped with a hybrid powerplant that combines a small-sized internal combustion engine, a generator, and an electric motor. But most importantly, the concept of the application is different the family of "Lancets" refers to the second-generation barrage ammunition, and to explain the principle of operation of the new drone, the chief designer of ZALA DEFENSE Alexander Zakharov had to come up with a new term "air mining".

Work on the defeat of the drone by other drones is carried out by many countries. As a rule, they copy the existing air defense system-ground detection and guidance stations, but instead of an expensive anti-aircraft missile-a cheap drone, often without a warhead at all, just as a kinetic weapon. The disadvantages of such systems are so many that the work has not progressed beyond the early prototypes.

"We are talking about an inverted air defense system," says Alexander Zakharov, " We do not need any detection fr om the ground and guidance, or launch. When we go behind the ground formation, our target detectability increases by an order of magnitude. Optoelectronic detection devices placed beyond the surface layer work much more efficiently than ground-based ones. We conducted a series of experiments and it turns out that even a small reconnaissancedrone we can see almost 15 km away. And it is not difficult to detect an impact UAV."

From the ground, clouds interfere, and when you work higher, starting from 2 km, the picture is just perfect. Any heat-contrast target glows like a light bulb, and it is perfectly visible in the thermal imaging device. This is both a detection and guidance system-two in one. Why can't you launch a single drone with powerful and expensive radio detection and guidance system, a kind of AWACS, and even raise cheap fighter drones, I ask Zakharov. It will not be cheaper, says Alexander, now accountants are fighting. All the same, the strike drone needs a guidance system, and it works well for detection.

Flying mines

Another concept of Zakharov "air mining". The developed system is used only for the period of active combat operations. Fighter drones take off in a flock and close certain airspace each controlling an area of about 30 km in diameter. The hybrid power plant (internal combustion engine+electric motor) allows you to stay in the air for up to 12 hours, the return is not provided, that's wh ere the analogy with a mine came from. Drones fly at different altitudes, for example, at 2 km, 4 km, and 6. The meaning is following - the lower drone works better for detection, and it is better to attack the upper one in a dive, it develops a speed of over 300 km/h.

Drones are almost completely autonomous, use secure communication channels, and continuously exchange information among themselves if at least one drone sees the enemy, then all drones see it. Moreover, they can re-aim for example, the first munition that has the least fuel left works on the target, and another one arrives to replace it. However, the system also takes into account any information from external sources from ground-based radars or "Shells".

One of the important features is the most powerful artificial intelligence on-board his products and multi-channel interference-proof communication. "One of the most important elements of the modern confrontation The one that has a connection, will work. - says Alexander, - But after all, when no one will have a connection, the autonomous intelligence on-board the rocket will work.

We are based on this initially we have a 1.5 Tflops calculator on board and today we use it by 3-5%. The product itself will not require further development for a long time the airframe, power plant, optical sensors, control system. And the software can be updated instantly resources are provided. We flash the software and get a new version of the rocket. The wars of the future are a confrontation of algorithms. And we have everything ready for this."

The system is fully automated, it does all the work itself, no operator can withstand 12 hours of continuous work behind the control displays. Detection and elimination the work of automated systems, which can work even without communication with the center. A person, perhaps, will decide to destroy at the "yes/no" level.

Bayraktar Hunter

The video shown has already caused a mixed reaction from the Turks, Bayraktar is an ideal target for air hunters. To accurately hit the target, the strike drone must illuminate it with a laser designator, which can not shine further than 3.5 km on an incline. So it must be at an altitude of 2.5 km maximum and in any case is lower than one of our missiles. The carriers of the strike missiles themselves may be higher, but we need one that shines. He is the main enemy, says Zakharov.

In Karabakh, Bayraktars worked in bundles, and a heavy unmanned reconnaissance repeater flew over them at high altitude, which transmitted data to the control center via satellite. So, the ZALA AERO fighter drones carry powerful electronic warfare equipment on board, in-flight just between the strike UAVs and the repeater, and can effectively put active interference. But "get" flying heavy UAVs at altitudes of 8-9 km, for example, MQ-9 Reaper, it, of course, can not, miracles do not happen.

But here Zakharov also has ideas. Next to us is already a flying prototype of a third-generation hybrid drone with a wingspan of under 5 meters with completely different strike capabilities, which we can not talk about yet. It can autonomously stay in the air for about a day, has a large flight altitude, and can reach high-altitude UAVs with relatively cheap means.

Disposal

Zakharov's fighter drone is non-returnable. But-universal, its guidance systems and powerful combat units can work successfully both in air, on the ground, and above the water surface targets. Since the system is planned to be used only during active combat operations, it is not a problem to find a secondary target on the ground or water for a drone that has completed its 12-hour period. And the video shows it perfectly.

I ask what range the new system works for. "You know the flight time. The cruising speed of the patrol is about 100 km / h. And you can multiply two numbers, " Zakharov smiles.

Source: https://www.popmech.ru/weapon/692713-istrebitel-dronov/




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