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Russia’s Recon Drone Takes Off as Military Touts 24-Hour Flight Time

Defense Ministry

The Russian military has unveiled footage of a reconnaissance drone, which it claims can fly for over 24 hours, performing its first flight.

Previous reporting has suggested that Russia’s long-endurance armed drone project had been beset by cost overruns and delays.

Russia’s Altius-U boasts an “entire spectrum of reconnaissance tasks using optical, radio and radar means” in addition to its flight time of more than 24 hours, the Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.

The Altius-U’s first test flight lasted 32 minutes at an altitude of up to 800 meters, the Defense Ministry said.

The minute-long video shows the Altius-U taking off from a runway, cruising over urban terrain and landing.

The Defense Ministry says the unmanned vehicle weighs 6 metric tons. 

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