Russia develops small gas analyser for use on drones

8 July 2021

The Roskhimzashchita holding of Russia’s state corporation Rostec on 7 July presented at the Innoprom-2021 exhibition the Shmel (Bumblebee) universal air gas analyser intended for installation on unmanned aerial vehicles. The online device can detect the presence of harmful substances in the air, measure background radiation and transmit the data to the online system.

The gas analyser is equipped with eight chemical sensors to determine the concentration of pollutants, as well as to measure the background radiation. The device provides automatic transmission of parameters and concentrations of hazardous chemical hazardous substances using permanent radio communication and binding to the GPS/Glonass system. The production will be deployed at the St Petersburg enterprise GosNIIkhimanalit, part of Roskhimzashchita.

“The new development can be used by supervisory authorities to measure the concentration of industrial emissions in the air by enterprises, in accidents at radiation and chemically hazardous facilities, as well as to identify violators of environmental legislation,” said Anatoly Akulov, General Director of GosNIIkhimanalit. “In addition, we see the possibility of its widespread use by Emercom of Russia for extinguishing fires: in this case, the gas analyser can rapidly ‘smell’ the presence of toxic combustion products or explosive gas concentrations in the air, promptly warn the operator and thereby protect firefighters. Shmel air gas analysers will become a universal means of reconnaissance and control in case of destruction, accidents at enterprises and transport. Serial production will begin in 2022. 

The system is low weight - less than 0.5 kg - and small: 18x12x6 centimetres, which means that it can be installed on any modification of drones. At the same time, its configuration can be changed in accordance with customer requirements by increasing the size of the gas analyser and installing more sensors to determine the concentration of pollutants. Production is planned at the level of 500 items a year. If there is an increased demand, the enterprise can increase its capacity to more than 1000 devices a year.

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