VR-Technologies working to develop tiltrotor UAV

VR-Technologies is working to develop a new UAV The RHV-30 is designed to carry up to 5 kg of payload (Marina Lystseva)

Russian Helicopters is displaying a prototype of the RHV-30 tiltrotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at MAKS 2017. Developed by subsidiary VR-Technologies, The vehicle is intended for remote monitoring roles and for transporting small freights to hard-to-reach areas. Russian Helicopters says it can also be used for geodetic and cartography missions.

Work on the RHV-30 began in March 2016. The first phase of testing has already been completed. In the second phase, to begin in Q1 2017, the UAV will be tested in different flight modes and weather conditions, and with different mission equipment.

Series production could begin by late 2018. A number of businesses have already expressed potential interest in the RHV-30. Negotiations are under way with several operators of oil and gas pipelines and electrical transmission lines. According to Russian Helicopters, “the UAV’s technical specifications meet the requirements of these potential customers.”

The RHV-30 is capable of carrying a payload weighing up to 5 kg, and can travel at a speed of up to 140 km/h. The vehicle has a maximum range of 100 km. It operates at a cruise airspeed of 110 km/h and at a maximum altitude of 3,000 m. Its maximum takeoff weight is 30 kg. The UAV measures 2 m by 2 m. As it is equipped with tiltrotors, the RHV-30 is capable of vertical take-off and landing.

The UAV’s current electric motors have an endurance of 40 to 50 minutes. VR-Technologies plans to equip the vehicle with a hybrid powerplant that would include a small piston engine and a generator. This would extend the RHV-30’s endurance to up to 5 hours.

By Tatyana Volodina

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