NewsRussia escalates drone and missile assaults on Ukrainian sites

Russia escalates drone and missile assaults on Ukrainian sites

Submunition from a cluster warhead in Ch-101
Submunition from a cluster warhead in Ch-101
Images source: © X
Katarzyna Bogdańska

25 June 2024 11:23

The Air Force of Ukraine recently reported the destruction of 12 missiles and 13 kamikaze drones used by Russia in nighttime attacks on energy facilities and other civilian infrastructure. Ukrainian services examined the Russian missile and have drawn some disturbing conclusions.

Ukraine's air force statement said that Russia struck targets in Ukraine with air-launched and sea-launched missiles as well as Iranian-made Shahed drones. The army reported that the enemy used 16 missiles of various types and 13 strike drones.

Russian strategic aviation Tu-95MS aircraft, operating over Russia's Saratov region, launched 10 Kh-101 and Kh-555 cruise missiles, two Iskander missiles from occupied Crimea, four Kalibr missiles from the Black Sea, and 13 drones from Primorsko-Akhtarsk in Russia and Balaklava in Crimea.

The latest version of the Kh-101 missile

The Armed Forces of the Russian Federation have again decided to use the latest version of the Kh-101 missile, a specific variant of the weapon that features two warheads - a standard one and a cluster one. The latest findings by the Ukrainian armed forces show that the Russian side regularly uses this type of ammunition during the conflict.

According to the information, at least one of the found missiles is new. It was produced in the second quarter of 2024 and is equipped with a cluster warhead.

The missile, found after Saturday's shelling, confirms that the Russian Federation's defence industry constantly supplies the army with improved versions of missiles that are more advanced than their predecessors.

The Russian military has at its disposal the latest model of the popular ammunition used during the conflict with Ukraine – the Kh-101 with two warheads, including one cluster warhead. The first use of this missile was recorded in early June, and at least one documented launch of the Kh-101 with a cluster warhead was observed in the following weeks.

Increases striking power: 60 "small balls"

The cluster warhead is a specific type of ammunition that increases the striking power of the Kh-101 missile. Its operation involves scattering many smaller sub-munitions over a large area contained in a larger body.

When the missile reaches a certain altitude, its fuselage opens, releasing the cluster ammunition over a vast area. In the case of the upgraded Kh-101 missile, we are talking about at least 60 "small balls", or smaller projectiles, that are hidden in the warhead.

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