The Russian military has destroyed more howitzers and main battle tanks of Kiev forces in the special operation zone using Lancet loitering munitions.
Between April 4 and 8, footage documenting several recent Lancet strikes surfaced online. The strikes destroyed or damaged an American-made M777 towed 155 mm howitzer, a Polish-made Krab self-propelled 155 mm howitzer, a Soviet-made 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled 122 mm howitzer, four American-made M109 self-propelled 155 mm howitzer, a Soviet-made 2S9 Nona self-propelled 120 mm mortar and what appears to be two Soviet-made T-64 tanks.
The Lancet loitering munition was developed by the ZALA Aero Group, a subsidiary of Russia’s defense giant Kalashnikov Concern. The company produces two versions of the loitering munition, the Izdeliye-52 with an endurance of 40 minutes and a three-kilogram warhead and the larger Izdeliye-51 that has an endurance of an hour and is armed with a warhead weighting five kilograms.
The loitering munition flies towards the designated area with a GLONASS-aided inertial navigation system. After arriving in the area, the operator utilizes an onboard electro-optical system via a two-way data-link to detect, track and lock on the target.
The low-flying profile, small radar cross-section and minimal infrared signature of the electric-powered loitering munition makes it nearly impossible to intercept.
There have been at least 13 documented strikes with Lancet loitering munitions since the start of April, and an overall of 200 documented strikes since the start of the Russian military operation in Ukraine last year. The system inflicted heavy material losses on Kiev forces.