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Russian UAVs and weapons with AI have been used in Syria

BEIJING, (BM) – On October 25, a senior official in the Russian ground forces announced that the latest Kungas robot had successfully passed tests in the country. It is reported that until 2025 a unit consisting entirely of robots and capable of performing combat missions will be formed in the Russian troops.

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This is not the first time that people in the country talk about “smart” unmanned weapons and military equipment. Recently, the Russian military department shared information about the “beacon” robot, which is able to adapt to complex terrain and perform combat missions in the city. Earlier, at the Army-2019 international military-technical forum, Russia demonstrated the unseen invisible combat aircraft Okhotnik-B, the Korsar reconnaissance remotely piloted aircraft, and other weapons and military equipment.

Currently, many examples of unmanned vehicles and weapons developed by the Russian side are used in real combat operations, they have already managed to achieve considerable success on the Syrian battlefields. So why does Russia pay so much attention to the research and development of unmanned weapons and military equipment? What is the combat effectiveness of the samples that have already found application on the battlefield? Answers to all these questions will be given in today’s issue.

UAVs play many roles and take center stage thanks to their power

In the modern world, in any theater of operations, drones play an increasingly important role compared to any other equipment controlled remotely. Russia embarked on the research of unmanned technologies rather late, but it seems that this did not affect the country’s success in the development and use of drones. In recent years, Russia has not only created and adopted a large number of drones, but also formed unmanned units in the ground forces, navy and air force.

The drones used by the Russian army can not only conduct fire reconnaissance and transmit coordinates, but can also aim artillery pieces, make an effective assessment and play many roles on the battlefield. Thanks to the combat successes already in place, Russian UAVs form the backbone of the power of Russian unmanned equipment.

In addition to the work on creating groups of unmanned aerial vehicles and a remotely controlled air fire barrier, the Russian side is intensively conducting research and development, as well as adopting military unmanned invisible aircraft capable of conducting combat operations autonomously. An example of this is Hunter-B, presented at the Army-2019 international military-technical forum. This UAV is designed according to the “flying wing” scheme, which ensures its invisibility, its hull is made of special materials, it is equipped with a high-precision target recognition system, equipment for conducting electronic warfare, it is capable of carrying precision-guided missiles, independently or with the help of humans, carry out reconnaissance missions and tracking, determining the coordinates of the target and launching a missile strike.

The most common among the drones, adopted by the Russian army, “Orlan-10”, the most versatile in terms of real combat.

He can play the role of “scout” in carrying out tasks to search for and save the wounded. On November 24, 2015, in the air over the Syrian-Turkish border, a Su-24M bomber, flying from the Russian base of Khmeimim, was shot down by a Turkish fighter. The aircraft commander Oleg Peshkov and navigator Konstantin Murakhtin ejected from a bomber. While their parachutes fell to the ground, they were bombarded by Syrian terrorists. Peshkov died from a direct hit, and the slightly wounded Murakhtin took refuge in a thicket in the mountainous terrain immediately after he landed and unfastened the parachute. When communication with the aircraft was cut off, the Russian military sent the Orlan-10 UAV to the scene for search and rescue operations. The rescue radio transmitter Murakhtin sent signals that were soon received by the drone, which determined the location of the navigator and transmitted data to the command of the base Khmeimim. Thanks to the coordinates provided by the Orlan-10 UAV, the Mi-24 combat helicopter and the Mi-8MTV multi-purpose helicopter with six marines on board successfully carried out an operation to rescue Murakhtin. Exploration, decision making, and search and rescue operations themselves took a total of 10 hours.

“Orlan-10” can also be a “navigator” and a “controller” during the conduct of artillery fire on the enemy. After the start of military operations in Syria, Russian troops located at the bases of Khmeimim and Tartus were suddenly attacked by terrorists. To combat them, in January 2018, Russian special forces and detachments equipped with the new Krasnopol-M2 guided shells carried out an aimed artillery strike, destroying the secret base of the terrorists and the warehouse with their drones. During the assault raid, the Russian side activated the Orlan-10 UAV as part of the UAV squad. The base and the warehouse were under continuous surveillance, and after the coordinates of their location were determined, information was transferred to the command, which ordered the artillery to open fire. After the start of the attack, Orlan-10 served as the “navigator” and set the direction in the air, helping guided projectiles hit the target. After the operation was completed, the drones turned into “controllers,” taking up the assessment of the damage caused by artillery.

The number of combat drones, a fighting force capable of “thinking” independently, is growing rapidly

Russia overtakes many countries in an effort to make robots their fighting comrades.

In December 2015, a battle took place in the mountainous region of the Syrian city of Latakia, which completely turned people around about the war and showed that the future, when robots will participate in hostilities, has already arrived. When the “height 754.5” held by Islamic radicals was captured, the Russian army sent six Platform-M tracked combat robots and four Argo wheeled robots in support of the Syrian government forces.

“Height 754.5” has a