Developed by the private company “Unmanned Technologies”, the FT-1 is meant to simulate aerial targets, including UAVs flying alone or in groups. This new capability would allow for improving training standards of Ukrainian Army SAM and air defense radar crews.
“This product is new to Ukraine. Its predecessor, the target aircraft system Strizh that was developed in the Soviet era was costly in maintenance and has now become obsolete and worn out,” explained Andriy Olishevsky, an engineer with Unmanned Technologies.
Compact in size, the FT-1 system is comprised of four protected cases containing four unmanned aerial vehicles, ground control station, launch system and antenna system.
“The equipment is mobile and easy to use in any area and in different weather conditions. It does not need a runway and can be transported by any mode of transport, including military and special equipment, at any distance”, Mr Olishevsky said.
The FT-1 technology would find applications in training crews of air defense systems like Tunguska (2S6), Strela (9K35), Buk (9K37), S-300, Osa (9K33), PPRU-1 “Ovod” (9S80), Igla (9K38), as well as P-18 and P-19 air defense radars.
With its variable radar cross-section capability, the FT-1 is suitable for training air defense crews in recognizing/identifying a broad variety of aerial target types, specifically low RCS targets flying at various altitudes and ranges.
The Flying Target-1 capability would be used for training crews of ZU-23, “Shilka” and “Tunguska” air defense weapons in firing at moving air targets, using a cone that would simulate low RCS targets during live firing drills.
“Live firing tests have validated that the target aircraft-towed cone that simulates a low-flying target meets the requirements for simulation of real-world aerial threats. The tests have reached their goal. During a firing session with Shilka self-propelled air defense system, a crew comprised of lecturers of the Ukrainian Air Force University of Kharkiv successfully defeated a target distanced some 2,000 m away,” said Valeriy Voyinov, a senior lecturer at the Armaments Chair.