Vladimir Putin has shown Russia’s military might with its latest combat surveillance weapon – a new drone disguised as a snow owl.
The aviation impostor – dubbed as Harry Potter’s owl, Hedwig – is aimed to confuse the enemy, allowing the unmanned flying vehicle to get closer to key targets in war zones.
The owl drone features a distinctive face, wings and a tail and is equipped with a laser beam to guide artillery and aviation.
It then enables other military assets to attack the target.
According to reports, military designers have seized a similar prototype designed by students at Zhukovsky academy.
The drone is slightly bigger than a real snowy owl which has a wingspan of almost five feet, and its makers claim it will be less visible than conventional unmanned aircraft.
The unmanned flying vehicle was revealed at the defense Ministry’s annual expo, Army 2019 Forum, in Moscow region which opened on Tuesday.
A second drone for use by the Russian military machine – not seen yet – is a mock falcon which makes bird-like noises, it was reported.
The polar owl drone was created by military Innovation Technopolis ERA in Anapa, set up by a Putin presidential decree last year.
The aim is to develop and fast track ingenious innovative technology for use by the Russian military, and Putin is known to take a personal interest in its work.
The drone weights five kilograms – or 11 lbs – and has a flying time of 40 minutes. It can be launched and operated by one person.
The snowy owl drone is likely to be deployed as part of an increase in Russian military operations in the Arctic.
It is unclear when the falcon drone will be unveiled.