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28 Sep, 2023 08:02

Russian interceptor destroys US-made Switchblade drone (VIDEO)

Footage released by the Defense Ministry showcases the capabilities of the Tor-M2 air defense system

The Russian Defense Ministry has released footage showing a Tor-M2 short-range anti-aircraft system intercepting a US-made Switchblade kamikaze drone deployed by Ukrainian forces.

The ‘M2’ variant is the latest in the Tor family, which has the ability to engage targets on the move rather than after stationary deployment. This makes it efficient in protecting military columns.

The new footage showcases the highly automated weapon system’s features and includes an example of its successful use against a US-made AeroVironment Switchblade.

The loitering munition is first shown on an onboard display, with its characteristic two pairs of wings clearly seen. Then the Tor-M2 launcher is shown firing a missile, with the crew monitoring its progress and the hit from inside.

It was not clear from the video and comments by crew members whether the destroyed kamikaze drone was the lighter Switchblade 300 model or the heavier Switchblade 600. ‘Kuzya’, a deputy commander of the Tor-M2 battery, explained the distinction between the two variants as he listed different targets that Russian air defense forces deal with in the fight against Ukraine.

The advanced interceptors used by the Russian system are efficient against all sorts of aerial threats, from surveillance quadcopters to artillery rockets, ‘Tourist’, a fellow leader from the same unit said.

“We have plenty of them. Enough for all drones… that the Ukrainian forces may have,” he said.

The projectile normally used by the Tor-M2 system is rated to engage targets at a distance of up to 12km and an altitude of up to 10km. A single launcher carries 16 of them.