Drones and missiles that Iran has promised Russia

Drones and missiles that Iran has promised Russia

The latest card played by Russia in the invasion war of Ukraine are the drones supplied by Iran, a strategic choice according to the Pentagon to compensate for the ammunition shortage of Vladimir Putin's army. However, Iran continues to deny this news, so much so that even on Monday 17 October, in the weekly press release, the spokesman for the Foreign Ministry Nasser Kaanani defined these rumors as unfounded and "based on political reasons". In fact, in addition to the already anticipated supply of the Shahed-136 and Mohajer-6 drones, according to the Washington Post, Iran has made agreements last month in Moscow to supply also Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar missiles. A specialty of the Ali Khamenei regime, which in recent years has focused on rockets, precision guided missiles, cruise missiles and drones to enrich its arsenal. Progress constantly monitored by Israeli intelligence, concerned about supplies in the radical axis that includes Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Assad regime in Syria, the Shiite militias in Iraq and the Houthis in Yemen.

The incessant production of this type of weaponry allows Iran today to have the largest arsenal of ballistic missiles in the entire Middle East, more than Israel itself, which for its part can boast superior technology but not the number, variety or even the range considering only conventional weapons. The ballistic ambition of the Tehran regime is also confirmed by the development of the space program, with the successful launch of some raw satellites entrusted to the Safid and Qased rockets and many other failed ones.


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Iran's missiles

Iran had already started its missile program in the time of the Shah, thanks to the collaboration with Israel in the Project Flower for short-range systems, but the strange partnership was interrupted after the Islamic revolution when, now in conflict with the West, Iran had ceased all design ambitions, ending up dismantling even what was the largest Gulf Air Force (400 fighter jets) due to a shortage of spare parts and maintenance supplied by Western partners. For its missiles, the Islamic Republic thus had to turn to its new friends Libya, Syria and North Korea by acquiring the Soviet Scud-B, used from 1985 to 1988 in the war against Iraq.

After the end of hostilities, Iran decides to develop its own autonomous project, investing in industry to reduce the dependence of raw materials, technology and spare parts from the West, while some imported missiles are adapted to their own strategic needs and renamed. This is the case with the Shahab.

Shahab-1 It is a design based on the Scud-B and can carry a 950 kg warhead covering a distance of 300 kilometers.

Shahab-2 It is based on the Scud-C, has a range of 500 kilometers and can carry a 750-kilo warhead. Part of these missiles have been converted to Qiam-1 and equipped with greater accuracy as well as a range of 700-800 kilometers. In this variant they were used in attacks on Islamic State positions in 2017 and 2018, while another variant of Quiam-1, called Burkan-2H, was supplied to Houthi rebels in the war against Saudi Arabia. br>
Shahab-3 It is based on North Korea's No-dong and has a range of approximately 1,300 kilometers. Due to the poor accuracy of about 3 kilometers which becomes useless against military targets, it was chosen by the regime for its experiments with the design of atomic warheads, although the nuclear program seems to be interrupted at the moment. Many of these missiles were later converted and renamed Ghadr, with the range extended to 1,600 kilometers but a smaller warhead. The Ghadr was in turn converted to Emad, which could have precision guidance and a range of 1,500 kilometers, but little is known about this missile tested in 2015.

Other missiles, this time with a solid fuel propulsion system, are instead produced entirely by the national industry, such as the Sajjl. Although liquid-state fuel produces more thrust than solid-state fuel, the latter allows for faster launch, decreasing the chances of the missile being neutralized by an enemy attack. Some types of liquid propellant missiles in fact need to be powered at the launch site and this greatly increases time and risk.

Sajjl-2 It has an average range of about 2,000 kilometers and was tested in 2009, a year after the launch of the first Sajjl from which it derives after slight modifications. US analysts have estimated that it could also carry a one-ton warhead, but there is no news of other tests since 2012 and therefore it is still considered non-operational.

The missiles required by the missiles also use solid state fuel. Russians Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar, in addition to the Raad-500. All of the Fateh family.

Fateh-110 Present in the Khalij-Fars and Hormuz variants, it has a range of about 500 kilometers and is equipped with fins under the warhead that allow greater accuracy on the target. The first Fateh-110A model with a range of 300 kilometers has reached 500 kilometers with the Fateh-313, while another version, the Fateh Mobin, includes an electro-optical finder to further improve accuracy. The Fateh-110 can carry 450-kilo explosive loads.

Zolfaghar Based on the Fateh-313 design, it uses larger rocket engines to reach a range of approximately 700 kilometers. In the Iranian arsenal he stands out together with the whole Fateh family for the greater accuracy, as seen in the January 2020 attack on the Ayn al Asad air base in Iraq. Other versions, Dezful and Haj Qasem can reach 1,000 kilometers and 1,400 kilometers respectively, and in the larger versions they can carry up to 550 kilos of explosives. To hit the target, these missiles can be guided by the data provided by drones, although little is known about both the technology used and the reliability of the communication network. Another variant, the Zolfaghar Basir, was unveiled in 2020 and uses the same electro-optical finder as the Fateh Mobin.

Raad-500 First unveiled in February 2020, it is considered a design improvement Fateh and can cover a distance of 500 kilometers with an accuracy of 30 meters. According to reports from the commander of the Irgc Aerospace Force Amir Ali Hajizadeh his body should be constructed of non-metallic material, probably including carbon fiber.

Among the missile systems that Iran could have at its disposal there is it is also the Khorramshar, but the conditional is a must because it is based on North Korea's Hwasong-10, a missile that failed launch 8 times in 2016. If it worked, however, it would be a remarkable weapon: it can carry a warhead from 1,800 kilos by 2,000 kilometers, reaching up to 3,000 kilometers when equipped with a 1,000 kilo warhead.

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They are the last sad protagonists of the war in Ukraine because they are used in swarms also on the capital Kyiv to sow the panic among the population and hitting strategic targets. Together with missiles, they are the most developed war projects by the Iranian industry, which can boast the oldest drone program in the world, as it began experimenting with unmanned vehicles as early as the 1980s. According to the American Enterprise Institute's Critical Threats Project, Iran's drone arsenal consists of eight main systems: Toufan, Shahed, Sadegh, Mohajer, Karrar, Hemaseh, Fotros, Ababil. Many are multirole drones (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, attack) and are developed in several versions.

Ababil It is a multirole drone launched on the runway that can reach in its latest version Ababil-5 480 kilometers of autonomy and be equipped with Almas guided anti-tank missiles or Ghaem guided gliding bombs.

Hemaseh It is a multirole drone for runway launch with a range of 200 kilometers and Ghaem gliding bombs.

Karrar It is a multirole drone launched from a pneumatic catapult that can reach 800-1,000 kilometers of autonomy and be equipped with Azaraksh guided missiles, Balaban guided bombs, Gbu-12 laser-guided multipurpose bombs, anti-ship cruise missiles Kowsar medium-range guided missiles, Shafagh laser-guided missiles, Simorgh cluster bombs, long-range Yasin guided gliding bombs, laser-guided MK-82 bombs.

Fotros It is a multi-role drone for track launch with a range of 1,700 to 4,000 kilometers. It can be equipped with Almas guided anti-tank missiles, Ghaem guided gliding bombs and Heydar-1/2 cruise missiles.

Sadegh It is a multi-role drone for launching from a pneumatic catapult with a range of 200 kilometers and adapted Misagh air-to-air missiles.

Toufan It is a kamikaze drone, it is launched with a Jato system and has a range of 100 kilometers.

Shahed-129 It is a multirole drone launched on a track with a range of 1,700 kilometers. and equipped with Sadid guided planing bombs.

Shahed-136 It is the notorious kamikaze drone used in Ukraine. Particularly economical and with an action range of 2,500 kilometers, it is equipped with GPS to hit the target by self-destructing with the integrated explosive warhead. It is very noisy and therefore noticeable, but thanks to its small size and low-altitude flight it is difficult to intercept by radars. It is used in swarms by the Russians also given its low cost.

Mohajer It is a drone present in different versions, in the latest Mohajer-6 it is a multi-role launch on the track with an autonomy of up to 2,000 kilometers equipped with Almas guided anti-tank missiles or Ghaem guided gliding bombs. It is the other drone available to Russians in Ukraine.

What we know about the Black hornet micro-drones donated to Ukraine by the UK and Norway They are the smallest in the world, weighing just 18 grams, and are designed to carry out reconnaissance operations at close range in urban areas. Kyiv will also receive the Night fighter portable anti-drone system

The ammunition

Almas It is a guided anti-tank missile with an engagement range of 8 kilometers.

Azarakshsh It is a guided missile with a range of 10 kilometers that can be used as an anti-tank or as an anti-aircraft.

Balaban It is a guided bomb with a 41 kg warhead that can hit targets up to 25 kilometers away.

Ghaem It is a guided scroll bomb that is usually used as an anti-tank.

Heydar-1/2 It is a cruise missile with an engagement range of 200 kilometers.

Kowsar It is an anti-ship cruise missile. It comes in three versions: the Kowsar-1 has an engagement range of 15-19 kilometers, the Kowsar-2 and the Kowsar-3 of 25 kilometers.

Misagh It is a portable anti-aircraft defense system that can be adapted to drones. The Misagh-1 has an engagement range from 50 meters to 500 meters, while the Misagh-2 ranges from 500 meters to 6000 meters.

Sadid-345 It is a guided scroll bomb whose specifications are not yet Note. Its development may have been hampered by US sanctions.

Shafagh It is a laser-guided missile often used as an anti-tank. It can hit targets 8-12 kilometers away, 15-20 kilometers in the most recent versions.

Simorgh It is a cluster bomb weighing about 250 kilos.

Yasin It is a bomb guided gliding with a range of 60-100 kilometers using a 225-kilo MK-82 bomb as a warhead.

According to Ukrainian intelligence services, the Russian request to Iran would have been a total of 2,400 drones. The help of the eternal enemy, however, ended up "waking up" Israel, which has decided to actively enter the conflict by supporting Ukraine with its intelligence. Precisely this collaboration could prove invaluable to combat the new danger, given the knowledge of Tehran's weapons and the know-how to neutralize drone attacks as well.

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