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Ukraine Started to Use Mysterious And Highly Effective Kamikaze Drones: First Results Include the Tor M2 And S-300VM SAM’s

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An unnamed kamikaze drone was used to attack the enemy
An unnamed kamikaze drone was used to attack the enemy

So far it looks as if it’s the first time the classified Phoenix Ghost drones are applied, although it is quite possible that we are talking about another completely unannounced kamikaze drone

The Security Service of Ukraine shared the video on the official page showing the work of a new type of kamikaze drones, which are distinguished by a number of features that demonstrated effectiveness.

In particular, in the uploaded video two russia’s Tor M2 and S-300VM anti-aircraft missile systems were destroyed. The latter system is scarce even for russia. It is a modernization of the Soviet S-300B and was developed in the early 2000s.

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The place and time of the strikes, the type of barrage ammunition, and its characteristics are not mentioned. But the demonstrated video allows to talk about really high possibilities of the new UAV.

In particular, the very targets that were struck. Such an air defense system as the S-300VM is not the kind of weaponry that is deployed near the front at all. The main purpose of this complex is to use its unique ability to destroy ballistic targets.

Ukraine Started to Use Mysterious And Highly Effective Kamikaze Drones: First Results Include the Tor M2 And S-300VM SAM’s, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russian-Ukrainian war
The 9A83M (with 4 launchers) and the 9A82M (with 2 launchers) / Illustrative photo from open sources

Defense Express notes that the S-300BM itself needs to be covered by short-range air-defense missile systems, and this role was most likely played by the Tor, which was destroyed while moving.

That is, the destruction of one of the vehicles of the S-300BM complex was unlikely to have occurred in the damage zone of Ukraine’s barrel artillery, but at greater distances.

Apparently, another drone is used to transmit the signal, which plays the role of a repeater and increases the control range. But this still speaks to the general flight range of the new kamikaze drone.

Ukraine Started to Use Mysterious And Highly Effective Kamikaze Drones: First Results Include the Tor M2 And S-300VM SAM’s, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russian-Ukrainian war

Another important aspect that distinguishes this drone from others is large angles of attack. That is, the barrage munition attacked the S-300BM launcher in a pike at an angle close to 70-80 degrees. This is a high indicator, which is unattainable for most kamikaze drones, which have a gentle flight path due to aerodynamic characteristics. At the same time, the ability to attack the target virtually vertically makes the protection of equipment completely helpless.

Taking into account a number of factors, namely the targets, the range of use, the ability of the drone to enter the pike, as well as the size of the combat unit, it is possible to make a cautious assumption that it’s a qualitatively new barrage munition. Defense Express reminds that last year there was information that Ukraine would receive Phoenix Ghost.

Ukraine Started to Use Mysterious And Highly Effective Kamikaze Drones: First Results Include the Tor M2 And S-300VM SAM’s, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russian-Ukrainian war

And now it is possible to compare information about this loitering munition and what the Security Service of Ukraine demonstrated:

  • the drone is designed to destroy medium-armored targets;
  • resembles the Switchblade;
  • can take off vertically;
  • flight time is about 6 hours;
  • equipped with an infrared camera.

Defense Express notes that one of the most profitable tasks of the Phoenix Ghost, which was developed by order of the US Air Force before 2022, is hunting for the enemy's anti-aircraft missile systems. The Pentagon announced last summer that Ukrainian fighters perfectly use the Phoenix Ghost system. However, no video had been a proof that Ukraine’s military applied them. Never the less, we do not rule out that it’s a completely different kamikaze drone.

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