Russia has unveiled a new and deadly weapon with ties to the infamous Kalashnikov. However, instead of a gas operated assault rifle this new weapon is a kamikaze drone packed with explosives that can be piloted remotely. It’s been developed by aerospace company ZALA Aero, which is a daughter company of Kalashnikov Concern – the arms company responsible for Russia’s defining weapon. And this new ‘Kalashnikov of the skies’ has reportedly been successfully tested during trial runs
The drone – officially known as the KYB (Cube) drone – has a maximum flying time of just 30 minutes. But it can reach speeds of between 50 and 80 mph and can carry a payload of explosives up to 6.6lbs (3kgs), say its manufacturers. The drone was showcased for the first time at the international IBEX arms exhibition in Dubai.
‘This is an extremely precise and very effective weapon, incredibly hard to fight by traditional air defence systems,’ said Sergey Chemezov, the head of Rostec, a Russian state giant in charge of development strategic arms companies. ‘The explosive can be delivered to target regardless of how well hidden it is.’ It operates ‘regardless of hidden terrains, at both high and low altitude’, he said.
Russia also used the arms exhibition to boast it has begun supplying Kalashnikov AK103 third generation assault rifles to Saudi Arabia under a contract signed between the two countries in 2017. The two countries are also poised to agree the joint production of the AK103 in Saudi Arabia.