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KRET has created a navigation system for Russia's first long-range drone

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KRET has included an inertial navigation system in the avionics of Altius, Russia’s first long-range drone, which is undergoing testing.

The strapdown inertial navigation system (SINS/BINS) significantly reduces the drone’s radar visibility and increases its resistance to interference thanks to the principle of inertial navigation, which is completely autonomous and requires no external transfer or receipt of signals from satellites or ground stations.

"The first stage of testing is underway, for which we have transferred to the drone’s developer the BINS-SP-1 system,” said Alexey Kuznetsov, CEO of the Moscow Institute of Electromechanics and Automation, which is part of KRET. “This is a basic unit that we will use to work out functional issues. When the drone goes into mass production, it will be equipped with a more modernized version of the BINS-SP-2, which enables accurate positioning and flight speeds twice that of the base model.”

The Altius project involves the creation of a medium-altitude drone, but inclusion of the SINS system produced by KRET enables navigation at all altitudes used by both military and civil aviation. The system can also be used in future high-altitude drones. The ceiling height for BINS-SP-2 equipment is 25,000 meters.

As is well known, traditional aircraft performance criteria such as weight, size and power consumption are of particular importance for drones. In this regard, KRET is considering the possibility of adapting the BINS-2015 system originally developed for the future MS-21 civilian airliner for use in drones.

"According to our calculations, BINS-2015 will pass all testing and certification stages and will be ready for mass production by 2017. After that, it can be quickly adapted for drones. It uses a smaller gyroscope, which will significantly reduce the equipment’s weight and size. In addition, it will have more integrated electronics and a number of other technological improvements,” said Alexey Kuznetsov.

BINS-2015 weighs 2.5 times less than the previous model and also consumes much less electricity, which has a positive impact on its fuel economy. This parameter is critical to long-range drone flights, whose key function is the ability to explore an area for a long time.

In modern aircraft, autonomous inertial systems are the primary means of navigation and determining spatial positioning. These devices are so unique that only four countries have successfully developed and manufactured them: the USA, France, Israel, and Russia.

KRET has created a navigation system for Russia's first long-range drone
KRET has created a navigation system for Russia's first long-range drone

Concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET) is the largest Russian company in the radioelectronic industry. It was established in 2009. It is a member of Rostec Corporation. Key activities: development and production of systems and complexes of onboard avionics for civil and military aircraft, air-based radars, State recognition systems, and electronic warfare systems (EW), test equipment for various applications (TE), electrical connectors, connectors, and cable assemblies. In addition, the enterprises of the Concern manufacture modern household appliances and medical equipment, equipment and control systems for the fuel and energy complex, as well as for transport and engineering industries. The Concern includes more than 100 research institutes, design offices and production plants located in 29 constituent entities of the Russian Federation. Number of employees: approximately 54, 000 people.