|Sukhoi S-70 Okhotnik|
|Role||Unmanned combat aerial vehicle|
|Primary user||Russian Air Force|
|Number built||1 flyable prototype|
|Program cost||1.6 billion RUB|
|Developed from||Mikoyan Skat|
The Sukhoi Okhotnik or Sukhoi S-70 "Okhotnik" (Russian: Сухой С-70 "Охотник", lit. 'Hunter'), also referred to as Okhotnik-B, is a Russian stealth heavy unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) being developed by Sukhoi as a sixth-generation aircraft project. The drone is based on the earlier Mikoyan Skat, designed by MiG, and encompassing some technologies of the fifth-generation Sukhoi Su-57 fighter jet.
The Okhotnik has been under development since at least 2011, when Sukhoi was chosen by the Russian Defence Ministry to lead a development of a new heavy unmanned reconnaissance and attack UAV for the Russian Armed Forces. The work on the drone is carried out by the Novosibirsk Aircraft Production Association, part of the Sukhoi company. In the documents, it is characterised as a "sixth-generation unmanned aerial vehicle".
In November 2018, the drone performed first series of taxiing, speeding and stopping tests in fully autonomous mode at a runway of the Novosibirsk Aircraft Production Association plant. During the runs, it has reached a maximum speed of 200 km/h.
On 18 January 2019, the third flyable Su-57 prototype (bort no. 053) was spotted wearing a new digital camouflage paint scheme, with digital silhouette of the Okhotnik on its top and underside. On 24 January 2019, first flyable prototype of the drone was seen towed at the Novosibirsk Aircraft Production Association plant. According to Russian officials, the Su-57 is being used as a flying laboratory for the testing of the Okhotnik's onboard radio-electronic systems, namely avionics.
Maiden flight is scheduled for 2019 with its introduction into service in 2020.
The Okhotnik's design is based on the flying-wing scheme and incorporates use of composite materials and stealth coatings, making the drone low-observable in flight. It has mass about 20 tons and wingspan around 65 feet (20 m). The drone is powered either by a single AL-31F turbofan, as used on the Sukhoi Su-27 fighter aircraft, or by the improved AL-41F derivative installed on Su-35S fighters and Su-57 prototypes. The maximum speed of the drone is reportedly 1,000 km/h while carrying its payload internally. It is likely, the Okhotnik was designed to act as a 'loyal wingman' controlled by a parent aircraft, the Su-57.
Specifications (Sukhoi S-70 "Okhotnik")
- Crew: 0
- Wingspan: 20 m (65 ft)
- Empty weight: 20,000 kg (44,092 lb)
- Powerplant: 1 × Saturn AL-31F or AL-41F, 123–147 kN (28,000–33,000 lbf) with afterburner
- Maximum speed: 1,000 km/h (621 mph; 540 kn)
- Range: 6,000 km (3,728 mi; 3,240 nmi)
- 2 internal weapons bays for up to 2,000 kg of guided and unguided ammunition
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- AVIC 601-S
- Boeing X-45
- Northrop Grumman X-47B
- Boeing Phantom Ray
- Lockheed Martin RQ-170 Sentinel
- Northrop Grumman RQ-180
- Dassault nEUROn
- BAE Systems Taranis
- Kratos XQ-58 Valkyrie
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