VIDEO: Crash that dashed Russia’s UAV hopes finally revealed

Russia’s strange absence of unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) stands out among the world’s biggest military spenders. The idea of home-grown, medium-altitude UAV for surveillance and strike is certainly not some US and Israeli fetish. China has the Pterodactyl (also known as Wing-Loong), India has the Rustom. Even relatively smaller spenders, like the United Arab Emirates, has an indigenous medium altitude UAV – the Adcom Smart Eye. In Brazil, Avibras is testing the Falcao. Pick a country and there’s probably somebody developing or operating a medium-altitude UAV.

But not Russia.

Some of that mystery was cleared up by a YouTube video uploaded on Friday. It shows the ultimate fate of the Vega Stork — Russia’s answer to the Predator. That was until 18 January 2010, when the Vega reportedly crashed on take-off during a demonstration flight. This video is likely the record of that ill-fated test.



Despite the Stork’s demise, Russia’s military still appears eager to develop and deploy the country’s own medium-altitude UAV. Last month, Vega showed off a brand new UAV concept at the MAKS 2011 air show at Moscow’s Zhukovsky airport. This one is called the Vega Ray (shown below). Its design appears similar to the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Searcher Mk-II UAV, although it’s not an exact copy. Perhaps Russia will soon join the ranks of militaries with an indigenous, medium-altitude UAV. 

vega ray.jpg

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5 Responses to VIDEO: Crash that dashed Russia’s UAV hopes finally revealed

  1. Chris R 20 September, 2011 at 6:20 am #

    God I love the Russians…only those magnificent drunken bastards can pull off a disaster like this. I mean that bird was going unstable from the get go and they just to power right through it…..love the Ruskies….

  2. So? 21 September, 2011 at 7:20 am #

    Looks little. Does it really justify TWO engines?

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