Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work

Shahed 129 has been given a weapons upgrade

Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work

Uncategorized September 27, 2013 0

Shahed 129. Iranian state media photo Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work Shahed 129 has been given a weapons upgrade by DAVID... Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work
Shahed 129. Iranian state media photo

Iran Unveils Killer Drone That Might Actually Work

Shahed 129 has been given a weapons upgrade

by DAVID CENCIOTTI

After displaying a stealth fighter that was a sort of joke, obsolete missiles as if they were new and fake or unrealistic Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Tehran may have finally unveiled a piece of military hardware that’s real.

In a ceremony held on Sept. 27, Iran unveiled a modified version of the “Shahed 129? drone, this one capable to carrying weapons. In other words, Iran’s domestic drone — itself based on either the Israeli Hermes 450 or the Watchkeeper 450 , but larger than those types — has been upgraded into a real Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle with a complement of actual missiles.

According to Mohammad Ali Jafari, the commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps, the drone can carry eight bombs or missiles while monitoring an area of 200 kilometers with its on-board sensors. The drone also has an endurance of 24 hours with a range of 1,700 kilometers and a ceiling of 24,000 feet.

Shahed 129. Iranian state media photo

These specs are impossible to independently verify. But Iranian television has aired footage of the drone flying and firing missiles, as well as images allegedly recorded from the drone’s infrared sensors.

Furthermore, the two models showcased so far seem to be of different versions: one features a retractable landing gear while the other has a fixed one.

Even if accuracy of the sensors and weapons can’t be judged from photos, what can be said is that, unlike many other project, the Shahed 129 seems at first glance to be a tangible platform. The drones seen in the first images do not immediately appear to be meager toys. But as always with Iran, it could still be so.

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