The Russian Armed Forces move to equip some of its combat helicopters with suicide drones, according to multiple reports.
A modular cluster of unguided aviation missiles, developed by the research center Zaslon (Screen) for the helicopter gunship Mi-28NM, will allow helicopters to fire mini-drones and suicide drones from the missile launch tubes.
The story was first reported by TASS, which cited a source in the defense-industrial complex.
Zaslon’s module B8V10-UV is different from the current ones in several respects. The number of missile tubes can be adjusted for each specific task. Also, it boasts weapons programming instruments.
“Built-in instruments transmit information from the helicopter’s weapons control system to the payload, be it controlled detonation missiles, guided missiles, mini-drones or suicide drones. For instance, it can charge the drone’s battery, transmit the activation command, and turn the drone on to send it on a pre-programmed mission,” the source said.
Originally, the new unguided aviation missile cluster was designed for the helicopter Mi-28NM, but it will be usable on all of Russia’s combat helicopters equipped with a weapons control system, such as Mi-28, Ka-52 and attack configurations of the Mi-8.
“Roughly speaking one flash drive is capable of reprogramming the weapons control systems for using not only ordinary unguided aviation missiles, but also smart weapons,” the source explained.
The block of weapons B8V10-UV with modular cassettes K8V10-UV and K8B5-UV (index 9-A-5013) was created by the research and development center Zaslon in the process of upgrading the helicopter Mi-28NM. For the first time the product was presented at the forum Army-2018. The caliber of the launch tubes is 80 mm.