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MOSCOW, June 20. /TASS/. Kalashnikov Group, the producer of the famous AK-74 assault rifle, has launched the serial production of Russia’s most advanced ZALA 421-16E2 unmanned reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft, the company reported on its website on Tuesday.
The company’s order book for ZALA 421-16E2 complexes has been formed for this year. The customers include government agencies and enterprises and also commercial structures.
"There are no analogues of ZALA 421-16E2 systems either in Russia or in the world by their functionality, the simplicity and reliability of operation. Besides, the unmanned aerial vehicle has a noiseless flight mode, which is so important for defense and security agencies. The first machines have already been transferred to customers," Deputy CEO of ZALA AERO (part of the Kalashnikov Group) Nikita Zakharov said.
The Kalashnikov Group expects the new drone to undergo state trials in 2017.
As its specific feature, the ZALA 421-16E2 has a weight of 7.5 kilograms. A daytime 60x optical zoom camera and a thermal imaging module with a 10x optical zoom can be mounted on the drone. The unmanned aerial vehicle can transmit video information in complex weather conditions within a distance of no less than 30 km and the radius of its control is no less than 50 km.
The new drone can fly continuously for four hours and can be launched by hand. The ZALA 421-16E2 will be publicly demonstrated at the MAKS international air show outside Moscow in July and at the Army-2017 exhibition in August.