For the first time, the Ukrainian Armed Forces have reportedly destroyed an Iranian Shahed-136 loitering munitions attack drone employed by the Russian Forces.
The Shahed-136 suicide drone developed by Iran was produced locally by the Russian defense industry under the name M214 Geran-2 and immediately launched into the Ukrainian battlefield.
A photo of the remains of the Geran-2 or Shahed-136 suicide drone after it was hit the Ukrainian armed forces was published by Russian media and said the attack took place in the Kupyansk region.
As explained by the Russian press, the M214 Geran-2 is the localized version made by the country from the design of Iran’s Shahed-136 suicide drone, while the above UAV is considered a copy. Israeli Harpy.
Spotted Iran striker UAVs in Kupyansk region. Presumably used by Russian forces. pic.twitter.com/xBVtuifvVS
— Максим (@kms_d4k) September 13, 2022
This statement is considered accurate, because comparing the rest of the Geran-2’s tail with the Shahed-136 is completely similar, it’s just not clear whether Russia manufactured its own suicide UAV from scratch or assembled it from components handed over by Iran.
It should be noted that earlier it was reported that the Russian Federation had ordered unmanned aircraft of completely different classes, these include the Shahed 129 UCAV and Shahed 171 stealth UAV.
The debris bears the Cyrillic designation “M214 Geran-2.” Although there have been reports that Russia was using Iranian drones to attack Ukraine, this could be the first visual confirmation.
The drone’s charred remains resembled an Iranian drone with a triangle- or delta-shaped design called the Shahed, or “Witness” in Farsi.
According to Ukraine media reports, Ukrainian troops reportedly came into contact with the drone near Kupiansk during Kyiv’s offensive on the eastern front, which has broken through Russian defenses around Kharkiv.
In the last few decades, Iran has emerged as a massive drone power. Despite technology import restrictions, Tehran has established itself as a major force that can develop a wide range of indigenous drones.
Iran has carved out a niche for itself by exporting drones to serve its own purposes, such as arming Hezbollah with drones to strike Israel and the Houthis with drone technology to target Saudi Arabia.
However, based on Iran’s size, and scientific and technical level, the characteristics of the Shahed-136 suicide drone are being mentioned by analysts with great skepticism.
First, the claimed flight range of up to 2,500 km is a problem, as it is considered impossible for a suicide drone with a weight of about 200 kg, a wingspan of 2.5 meters, and with a 50-horsepower normal engine.
Furthermore, the Shahed-136’s MD-550 engine, which is directly available on AliExpress, demonstrates that it is not a wholly military product and that many of the drone’s other parts are probably also civilian.
In terms of guidance means, the Shahed-136 suicide drone is certainly only equipped with civilian satellite navigation equipment and therefore it can only attack stationary objects.
There is also no complete information on the power of the warhead, but it is unlikely to be more than 25% of the weight – with the total weight of this drone at 200 kg.
The next issue to talk about is that there is no evidence that the Ukrainian air defense missile system was destroyed by the Geran-2 according to the Russian site.
It is hard to rule out the likelihood that this combat vehicle has fallen on its own while in operation, especially when coming into contact with the autocratic weapon that suppresses the UAV, as many of the civilian components described above.
But anyway, with a large number of suicide UAVs of Iranian origin, the Russian Army will have more means to fight the enemy, especially after the domestic Lancet or Kub has not shown strength and effectiveness.