Russia conducts first helicopter drone test at Arctic oil field
© RIA Novosti. Evgeny Yepanchintsev

Russia conducts first helicopter drone test at Arctic oil field

The first test of an unmanned helicopter was held at the Vostochno-Messoyakhskoye oil and gas condensate field in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Area, the northernmost onshore oil field in Russia. The chopper covered 130 km and delivered a 150-kg load. Experts believe the testing was a success.

“The helicopter displayed high technical capabilities in polar conditions. The second stage of testing at the Vostochno-Messoyakhskoye field is scheduled for December: both developers and oil producers are ready to test the drone in the Arctic winter environment,” reports the Gazprom Neft press service. 

The company says that the main testing objective is to confirm the potential of pilotless technologies to provide prompt and safe life support to autonomous northern fields. The new delivery system is greatly needed because it helps the company to deliver by ground and air transport hundreds of thousands of tons of engineering and drilling equipment, construction materials and vital resources for oil production centers.

It was the Russia-made Tiber system that underwent flight testing.

“Based on the testing results, the company will accelerate the adoption of drone solutions in its logistic activities and continue to participate in devising a legal framework to regulate the use of remotely piloted vehicles at Russian oil fields,” noted the test engineers.