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Ukraine has equipped its maritime drones with Grad missile systems: they have already been tested in combat

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Ukraine has equipped its maritime drones with Grad missile systems: they have already been tested in combat

The Security Service of Ukraine continues to upgrade its fleet of unmanned maritime drones, which are famous for hunting russian ships in the Black Sea. This time the Sea Baby drones have been reinforced with multiple rocket launchers. Find out what they look like and where they have already been used against the occupiers

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Sea Baby maritime drones used by the Security Service of Ukraine to strike russian ships in the Black Sea have been equipped with Grad multiple rocket launchers. This was reported by several Ukrainian media outlets.


According to Ukrayinska Pravda, citing sources in the SSU, the updated surface drones have already been tested in combat. Thus, on the night of 20 May, the Ukrainian secret service, together with the naval forces, used these drones to practice from the sea on the positions of the russian army on the Kinburn Spit (Mykolaiv region).


The SSU notes that Sea Baby is not just a drone, but a multifunctional platform that is constantly being improved. Now they are equipped with a multiple launch rocket system, and this technological solution is already showing powerful results. 


It is worth noting that the multiple launch rocket systems on the naval drones were tested in the winter and have now started performing missions.






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Air defence drones


Recently, the Ukrainian media also reported that Ukraine has managed to create a surface marine drone with an air defence system on board. According to experts, the drones are equipped with two R-73 air-to-air missiles. This munition is Soviet and has a short range. The carriers of the R-73 are Su-27 and MiG-29 fighters. The missile was very manoeuvrable and had a good homing head with the ability to deviate from a straight line by up to 40 degrees. At the time of development, the munition was extremely effective, the researcher writes.


It is noted that the range of such a missile is about 15 km. This means that one or two maritime drones with R-73s will be able to defend a flock of conventional kamikazes from russian helicopters and fighters.


In addition, the Ukrainian army can ambush russian aircraft as they take off or land at Crimean air bases.


It is worth noting that the emergence of naval drones in service with the Ukrainian army has changed the rules of the game for the russian navy. Since the beginning of the great war, Ukraine has managed to hit dozens of occupiers' ships. For example, in 2022-2023, SSU drones hit the Admiral Makarov and Admiral Essen frigates, as well as the Ivan Golubets minesweeper and the Ladny patrol ship, the Samum and Buyan missile carriers, the Pavlo Derzhavin ship and the Professor Mykola Muru large military tug, and the Vladimir Kozitsky reconnaissance and hydrographic ship.


Naval drones are also in service with the Defence Intelligence of Ukraine. Specialised intelligence units have also destroyed many russian ships in the Black Sea. One of the most recent was the corvette Serhii Kotov, which went down in March 2024. We told you more about the destruction of this vessel here.



Photo: Ukrayinska Pravda


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