27 May 2024
Russian missile system used to pre-emptively attack Ukraine 4

Russian missile system used to pre-emptively attack Ukraine 4

Russia launched a series of cruise and ballistic missiles at targets in Ukraine, paving the way for a `special operation` in the country.

A US defense official today said the Russian military launched more than 160 missiles on the first day of the special military operation in Ukraine.

Military experts say that Moscow has used an unprecedented number of guided missiles of diverse types to pave the way for other forces to enter Ukrainian territory.

3M14 Kalibr

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense said the Russian army launched about 30 3M14 shells, a ground attack variant of the Kalibr cruise missile, in the opening raid of the campaign.

Russian missiles attack Ukrainian airport

Russian missiles attacked Ivano-Frankivsk airport in western Ukraine on February 24.

The 3M14 version is equipped with GLONASS satellite navigation and inertial navigation systems, and an ARGS-14E radar detector with a range of 20 km to capture targets with high radar reflectivity.

The missile uses an altimeter and terrain image matching system, allowing it to fly close to the ground to minimize the possibility of detection, giving the enemy less time to react.

This type of missile can be deployed from a vertical launch tube on a surface ship or fired through a submarine’s torpedo tube.

Cruise missiles launched from aircraft

Military experts are not sure about the possibility of Russian aircraft launching cruise missiles toward Ukraine, but a US defense official emphasized that the opening attack of Russia’s campaign mobilized 75 bombers.

Among these, the Tu-95MS and Tu-160 strategic bomber duo can launch many types of ground attack cruise missiles with large ranges.

The main weapon of these two aircraft is the Kh-101 stealth cruise missile equipped with an inertial navigation system combined with an optical-electronic probe, as well as updating the location and flight path via satellite.

Russian missile system used to pre-emptively attack Ukraine

Tu-160 aircraft with Kh-55SM and Kh-101/102 missiles.

The missile is equipped with a turbojet engine, allowing it to cruise at a speed of 700 km/h, then rush to the target at a maximum speed of 970 km/h.

Each Kh-101 is equipped with a warhead weighing 400 kg, including high explosive (HE), penetrating or cluster explosive types, while the Kh-102 uses a nuclear warhead with a destructive power equivalent to 250,000 tons of medicine.

Besides, the Kh-55 missile has the ability to fly along the terrain at extremely low altitudes and maneuver continuously to avoid detection.

Iskander-M ballistic missile

Unconfirmed videos show a series of Russian ballistic missiles launched towards Ukraine.

Iskander is a single-stage rocket that uses solid fuel, is equipped with a satellite navigation system, has a length of 7.2 m, a diameter of 0.95 m, launch mass of 3.8 tons, maximum range of 500 m.

Iskander’s highlight is its ability to penetrate every missile defense system in the world.

Russian missile system used to pre-emptively attack Ukraine

Ukrainian cities were hit by air strikes or missile attacks.

The Iskander-M version is also equipped with an optical-electronic probe and data link with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or early warning and airborne command aircraft, allowing the missile to hit the target.

Ukrainian intelligence said last month that Russia had deployed at least 36 Iskander missile launchers near the border, enough to threaten the capital Kiev and many targets within the country’s territory.

Iskander-K ground-launched cruise missile

The Iskander-K cruise missile complex shares an ammunition carrier, launch pad and support vehicle with the Iskander-M system.

The main weapon of this system is the 9M728 bullet with a range of 500 km.

Kh-31P anti-radar missile

Images in the capital Kiev on February 24 showed the remains of a hypersonic missile launched from the Kh-31 aircraft, apparently the Kh-31P radar-killing version.

The Kh-31 missile was developed by the Soviet Union in the late 1970s with the goal of creating a radar-killing weapon that could deal with advanced US assets at that time such as the Patriot air defense complex and the Aegis shield.

The first Kh-31 prototype was test-launched in 1982 and put into service 6 years later.

Russian missile system used to pre-emptively attack Ukraine

Ukrainian police examine the remains of Kh-31 missiles on the streets of Kiev on February 24.

All Kh-31 variants use the primary thrust stage to achieve transonic speed, then activate the ramjet engine to maintain supersonic speed throughout the journey.

The Kh-31P flies at high altitude to track enemy radar signals, allowing it to reach a speed of more than 4,300 km/h and a range of 110 km, while the Kh-31A flies close to the sea surface, with a maximum speed of 3,300 km/h.

The Kh-31 series is considered one of the most dangerous tactical weapons for Patriot batteries and US warships, forcing Washington to find a solution.

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