The Zagorsky Optical and Mechanical Plant, where a massive explosion occurred on Wednesday, Aug. 9, reportedly has ties to developing a “cutting-edge new-generation bomber,” according to Russia’s Agenstvo media outlet, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Reports suggest that the plant, located in Sergiev Posad – 70 km from Moscow – had been actively involved in advancing a new long-range bomber-missile carrier known as Poslannik.

The Poslannik aircraft is a flying wing design, incorporating technologies and materials aimed at reducing visibility to radar systems (stealth technology) and increasing unrefueled range. The aircraft is configured to employ current and future strategic cruise missiles, high-precision aerial bombs, as well as hypersonic weapons.

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This aircraft, with its roots dating back to 2009, has been under collaborative development by prominent players in the Russian military aviation sector, including the renowned Tupolev company and the Ekran National Research Institute.

The Ministry of Defense of Russia, acting as the state customer, was closely overseeing the development of this supposedly groundbreaking bomber.

The aircraft superficially resembles the US-built, 30-plus-year-old B-2 Spirit stealth bomber and the upcoming US Air Force B-21 fifth generation stealth bomber, both of which are trans-continental flying wing platforms designed on supercomputers. The B-2 made its first flight on July 17, 1989. It is invisible to any military radar system employed to date.

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According to two other existing state contracts, the Zagorsky Optical and Mechanical Plant supplies binoculars and dosimeters to Rosgvardiya. In addition, in 2019, the plant supplied the Screen Scientific Research Institute with L-150-28M and L-140 radiation warning stations, which are installed on military helicopters and airplanes.

On the morning of August 9, a powerful explosion occurred in the area adjacent to the Zagorsky Optical and Mechanical Plant in Sergiev Posad. More than 50 people were injured, and one woman died in an intensive care hospital unit.

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