On January 22, Myanmar placed an order for Pantsir S1 anti-aircraft systems and Orlan-10E unmanned aerial vehicles. Russia has bagged its first ever contract to provide Orlan-10E drones it has been aggressively marketing for several years. The updated variant is expected to have a laser designator to allow it to pinpoint targets for precision-guided artillery and aircraft munitions. Although the reconnaissance drone was inducted by the Russian military around a decade ago, its export variant was first revealed at LIMA-2017 in Malaysia. The price of one drone is reportedly between US$87,000 and US$120,000.
The Orlan-10 is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed by the Special Technology Center (STC) in Saint Petersburg for the Russian Armed Forces. The drone is usually used in a group of two or three, where the first one is used for reconnaissance in a height of 1–1.5 km, the second one for electronic warfare and the third one as a transponder that transmits intelligence information to the control center. One system can include up to 5 vehicles. More than 1000 Orlan-10’s have been produced, with 11 different variations. The Orlan-10 features a composite hull that reduces its radar signature. It has seen action in Ukraine, Syria, Libya and Nagorno-Karabakh.
The Orlan-10E is 1.8 m long and has a wingspan of 3.1 m, a takeoff weight of 18 kg, a payload of 5 kg, a speed of 70-180 km/h, an endurance of 15 h and a maximum altitude of 6,000 m. The aircraft is powered by a petrol engine and is capable of operating within the -30°C…+40°C temperature bracket. It maintains comms with its control post at a distance of 150 km. Its data link allows a transfer rate of 10Mbps. The UAV’s payload may include a still or video camera, a stabilized TV camera, an infrared camera with all-round coverage, or electronic equipment. A single ground-based control station controls up to 16 Orlan-10E UAVs in flight at the same time.
The Orlan-10E has become one of the first Russian modern tactical unmanned aircraft systems to successfully undergo all tests with the Russian Ministry of Defence and enter service with the Russian Land Forces and airborne troops. The mobile version of the Orlan10E system can be mounted on virtually all types of vehicles (at the customer’s choice) and includes two to four unmanned aircraft, ground control terminal featuring integrated training capabilities, and a remote antenna. The system has proven its reliability and effectiveness during numerous operations in various weather conditions. A man-portable version of the system includes up to two unmanned aircraft.