Photo 12:55 29 Jan 2024

Russia upgrades Shahed drone for third time, boosting thermal effect

Photo: defence-ua.com

The Ukrainian National Police published photos of the combat unit of the downed Russian drone they discovered following another attack on Ukraine.

The analysis found that the new combat unit received additional cumulative and incendiary effects during the upgrade, Rubryka reports, citing Defense Express.

According to the publication, this is the third version of the Russian combat drone since the Ukrainian authorities started to find drones with the index "BSF" in July 2023.

The new combat unit was found in the "black" Shahed-136 drone, which the Russians used recently in strikes against Ukraine. The marking of the combat unit contains the index "BST-52" and also includes the number 206-2-23, indicating that it was produced in 2023. The exact meaning of "206-2" is being analyzed.

Photo: defence-ua.com

What changes have occurred? The combat unit received a cumulative recess, which is responsible for creating a cumulative jet.

Photo: defence-ua.com

At the same time, the most dangerous is the additional thermal effect during the explosion of the modernized "Shahed," which is provided by the installed incendiary elements inside the combat unit. Presumably, we are talking about thermal "grenades".

Photo: defence-ua.com

"Russia's attempt to create such a diverse combat unit follows the original combat unit of the Iranian-produced Shahed-136 drone. It had a large number of cumulative craters, which directly indicated a misunderstanding by its developers of the physical processes of cumulative jet formation, as well as ready-made striking elements," the publication writes.

Combat units with the index "BSF," which are most likely used in other Russian missiles, are no longer observed. It is likely that "BST-52" will also replace "MSN," which is also a standard combat unit of another Russian missile.

It was previously reported that the Russian strike drones have become unusually black in color and contain material that absorbs radar signals. This is to make it difficult for them to be detected by air defense forces.

What we know about Iran's position on Russia's war against Ukraine

On September 13, 2022, the Ukrainian military destroyed for the first time an Iranian-made kamikaze drone used by the Russians in the attack.

According to Ukrainian intelligence, Russia ordered over 2,400 kamikaze drones from Iran. Iran denies providing weapons to Russia for the war in Ukraine.

However, Prosecutor General's Office experts have established that the "Shahed" manufacturer is an Iranian aircraft company.

US intelligence believes that the construction of a drone production plant in Russia could have a significant impact on the war in Ukraine.

The American publication obtained internal documents on the operation of the Iranian drone production plant in the special economic zone "Alabuga" in the Russian Republic of Tatarstan, which, by 2025, plans to produce over 4,000 "Shahed" kamikaze drones.

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