Ukraine has successfully used a drone of its own production with a range of 1,000 km, Natalia Sad, spokeswoman for the state-owned Ukroboronprom company, said on Facebook.
Valery Zaluzhny, commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Mykola Oleshchuk, commander of the Air Force, and Yuri Gusev, director of the concern, watched the new drone.
Sad accompanied the publication with a photo with them and thanked everyone involved in the creation of the drone. “In fact, this is the merit of a huge cohort of people, without exaggeration, defense heroes”, she wrote.
The development of the strike drone, which can carry a payload of up to 75 kilograms, became known last October. In the winter, Ukroboronprom reported on the success of its aerial tests.
Project manager of the concern Oleg Boldyrev noted that the Ukrainian development is similar to the Iranian drone kamikaze Shahed. “I would call it ‘patient zero’. The machine flies, the machine is now undergoing training, because we, speaking of a strike drone, we are talking about the kamikaze variant. But we Ukrainians are very greedy people. We will have kamikaze with the ability to return”, he said, specifying that the vehicle will be able to counter electronic warfare (EWC) weapons.
According to Boldyrev, both Ukrainian and foreign components are used for the production of the drone. However, domestic specialists are involved in software development, drone communication with ground stations, assembly, and maintenance.
In early 2023, Ukroboronprom said that the development of a strike drone with a range of up to 1,000 km has entered the final stage and “has reached a stage about which nothing can be said”. “We are preparing for the next stage – a demonstration of the capabilities of this complex by the leadership of the security and defense forces of our state”, Natalia Sad said at the time.
Apparently, the report on this was presented on June 20. According to Ukrainian Pravda’s sources, the drone was shown to Zaluzhny and the head of the Air Force on May 3. It is not known whether the drone was tested or its performance was tested directly on the battlefield.