The Shahed-129 (Witness) drone is a combat UAV capable of carrying eight bombs or domestically-manufactured Sadid missiles at the same time, and is designed to hit stationary and mobile targets alike. Capable of conducting intelligence gathering and attack operations, flying for 24 hours, the Shahed-129 is the first UAV to be developed in Iran for medium to long-term heights. It has an effective operational radius of 1,700 km in terms of precision targeting, flight endurance of 24 hours on a single fuel run and a flight ceiling of 24,000 feet. It has a monitoring capability of 200 km radius.
The numerical suffix 129 is an important part of this systems designator, given the pervasive popularity of the "Shahed" prefix in Iranian weapons nomenclature. The fine folks over at Military Factory translate "Shahed" as "Eye Witness" which is literally correct but completely misses the whole point of the matter. Shahed, Shahid, or Shaheed originates from the Quranic Arabic word meaning "witness" and is used to denote a martyr in Islam. In its literal translation it means “witness” and is thus comparable to the term “martyr” (from Greek martys, witness). The term "Shaheed" is applied to those who sacrifice their lives for Allah's (God's) cause. They have no fear; they only fear Allah and want to obey Him and to serve Him. They realize that their lives belong to Allah, the One who created them, so it is a gift and we should not be so selfish about it. To obey Allah and to implement what He has commanded (truth, justice and liberty) might mean the loss of their loves. Their love for Allah motivates them to sacrifice the precious gift of life. They are assured of a great reward in the end for their unselfish act. Their focus is on the next life and on pleasing Allah.
In the Iranian higher eduction system, Shahed students are students whose fathers were martyred during the imposed War of Iran-Iraq. Those who have been wounded and left disabled either at the war fronts or in bombardment / missile attacks by Iraq are called Isargars. Iranian prisoners of the war are called Azadegan. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, it is considered as a great success for the youth to enter university. An incentive to be a Shaheed is found in the Hadeeth that states: "No one who enters Paradise will want to come back to the world and have anything on the earth except the 'Shaheed.'. He will wish to return to the world and be killed ten times because of the honor he sees" (Bukhari and Muslim).
In recent years, Istishhad [martyrdome operations] has been described as a type of defensive tool that Islamic jihadi movements have employed against invading enemies and occupiers. The majority of Shia jurists have legitimized this type of operation which is considered a holy war by Muslims as an example of endless war against invaders. The reason thus given by high Muslim jurists is based on the absolute authority of the Quran and all these collections of hadith about Jihad ethics and the priority of Defense over preferring oneself.
In the Shia tradition there is a continuous legacy of martyrdom, from the belief that Islamic history was derailed when political power passed out of the hands of the holy Prophet Muhammad’s family (p.b.u.t) in the 7th century. The Shias believe that Imam Ali b. Abi Talib (p.b.u.h), the cousin, companion, and son-in-law of the holy Prophet (p.b.u.h) was the only rightful successor to him, and that Imam Ali’s specified descendents were the rightful heirs to the leadership of the Muslim community.
It is difficult for a non-Muslim to grasp the power and depth of feeling shahadat (martyrdom) wields in Shia Islam, so perhaps it is best to let one of them attempt to describe it: "The story of shahadat and that shahadat challenges is so sensitive, so exciting that it pulls the spirit toward the fire. It paralyzes logic, It weakens speech, It even makes thinking difficult. Shahadat is a mixture of a refined love and a deep, complex wisdom. One cannot express these two at the same time and so, one cannot do them justice." The obsession with mourning for the martyrdom of al-Husayn, and the rituals associated with its commemoration during the ‘Ashura, form a part of the chasm that divides the two main sects of Islam.
Shahad-129 is similar in configuration to the Israeli Hermes 450 UAV, but larger. Some believe it is based on the British UAV WK450, which is also based on the Hermes 450. The system was developed in 2007. Its components were developed at Malak-Ashtar University and Shahad Research Institute. Its final configuration was set in Iran's HESA industry. In July 2012, it was first featured in the "Great Prophet 7" war game, alongside other UAVs. On 25 September 2012 Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) unveiled a new indigenous unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with 24-hour nonstop flight capability.
Brigadier General Amir-Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the IRGC’s Aerospace Division, said Friday 27 September 2013 that the drone can help ensure sustainable security for the country. “The Shahed 129 [UAV] can easily track and identify bandits, terrorists and drug smugglers as well as anyone targeting the Islamic Republic of Iran’s sustainable security and can fire missiles at them upon orders from commanders,” he said. Mass-produced, the Shahed 129 can now safeguard the country’s frontiers, said the commander.
Mass-produced, the Shahed 129 can now safeguard the country’s frontiers, said the commander. Iranian military officials have said that the drone can increase Iran’s surveillance capabilities in border areas, the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman. In recent years, Iran has made great achievements in its defense sector and has attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.
In September 2013, Iran began serial production of the Shahad-129 UAV. It was shown carrying 4 missiles ("sided") loaded with a two-bar launcher under its wings. Iranian sources estimate that the UAV can carry over 8 bombs and designed to hit mobile and stationary targets. After the unveiling in October, four control aircraft were produced a year, so eight were delivered between the year 1 and 2. Contrary to preliminary planning, the Sadid, or Conquest, missile could not be used due to the failure to design and build a launcher suitable for carrying these missiles under control wings and the inability to solve missile targeting and guidance problems. Instead, aviation experts saw the design and manufacture of an example Sadid rocket , which, like a smart TV-guided bomb, could be used against non-moving ground targets. This non-propellant smart bomb was named Sadid . When the stabilizing fins were mounted on either side, Sadid was named and became the main control weapon.
October 6, 2012 marked the first documented combat use of the UAV. That day, at 10:00 local time, Shahed 129 was shot down over Israeli territory by a General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft. The apparatus took off from the territory of Lebanon controlled by Hezbollah and flew into Israeli airspace from the Mediterranean Sea over the Gaza Strip. According to official reports from the Israeli side, the machine was intercepted after a half-hour flight since the intrusion. According to other unofficial sources, the machine was in the airspace of Israel for about 3 hours. It was shot down about 30 km from the nuclear research center in Dimona northeast of the city of Beersheba. The search for the remains of the machine lasted a week and they were restored by television journalists who found fragments of wings and fuselage in front of the military search group.
On June 8, 2017, Shahed 129 attacked US special forces in the Al-Tanf region of Syria with air-to-ground missiles . The camera was shot down by a US Air Force McDonnell Douglas F-15E Strike Eagle plane. A few days later, on June 20, 2017, in the same area, the F-15E intercepted another Shahed 129 who followed the movements of the coalition forces. After observing that the drone is armed, the decision was made to shoot down the UAV. Both F-15E belonged to the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing.
Shahed 171 - Simorgh / Simorq / Simurgh unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
A combat reconnaissance tactical drone and a modern destroyer were delivered to the Navy in a ceremony in southeastern Iran on 07 December 2019. The ceremony was held in the Navy's 3rd region of Nabovat in the port city of Konarak in Sistan- Baluchestan province on the coasts of the Oman Sea. Navy Commander Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi and Rear Admiral Sayyari, who is currently deputy chief of the Army for coordination, attended the ceremony. The Iranian Navy's new unveils were aimed at boosting the force's defense power.
The Simorq unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is a naval pattern of Shahed-129 drone which was previously operated by the airspace force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and is capable of staging combat operation against surface targets using smart precise-guided Sadid bombs. Simorq is a domestically-manufactured and multi-purpose drone with high range flight capability. The drone can be utilized in surveillance and combat operations. Simorq can fly operationally as far as 1,500 km up to 24,000 feet altitude for a period of continued 24 hours.
Simorq has been planned and manufactured by the Iranian experts and is considered as a new achievement for the defense industries. The Navy's new home-made Bayandor destroyer, which has joined the Nabovat 3rd region, will remarkably bolster the fleet's combat might. On the sidelines of the ceremony, Rear Admiral Khanzadi highlighted durable security across the country's waters, noting, "Other countries' forces that are currently in the region are after their own interests. Their presence and movement in the region's waters are deceptive and exhibitive. They claim that the region is not safe, however, we see no insecurity in the region." The Iranian Navy has in recent years along with the IRGC Navy have strengthened their capabilities. They are equipped with different home-made weapons.
|Capacity||400 kg payload|
|Length||8 m (26 ft 3 in)|
|Wingspan||16 m (52 ft 6 in)|
|Height||3.1 m (10 ft 2 in)|
|Powerplant||1 x Rotax 914 four cylinder, four stroke aircraft engine|
|Cruise speed||150 km/h (93 mph, 81 kn)|
|Combat range||1,700 km (1,100 mi, 920 nmi)|
|Ferry range||3,400 km (2,100 mi, 1,800 nmi)|
|Service ceiling||7,300 m (24,000 ft)|
|Bombs||4 x Sadid-345 PGM|
Three important achievements of the IRGC in the field of UAVs and defense were unveiled in the presence of Major General Hossein Salami, Commander-in-Chief of the IRGC. On the eve of the 3rd of Khordad, the day of "Resistance, Sacrifice and Victory", in a ceremony attended by Maj. Gen. Hossein Salami, Commander-in-Chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, Commander of the IRGC Air Force, from three The important and strategic defense and military achievement of the IRGC in the field of UAVs and defense was unveiled.
Unveiling of the all-Iranian surface-to-air missile system "9D", which has the ability to deal with all kinds of threats at close range such as cruise, aircraft bombs and various drones and their destruction, as well as "Quds" radar system with the ability to deploy and move quickly Another achievement unveiled by the IRGC Commander-in-Chief.
The Gaza super-heavy and wide-body drone with a variety of missions in the areas of surveillance, combat, reconnaissance and flight duration of 35 hours was the first defense achievement of the IRGC that General Salami visited the construction process. This heavy drone is capable of carrying 13 bombs up to an operational radius of 2,000 kilometers on a combat mission, as well as carrying 500 kilograms of various information and signal gathering equipment. With the addition of this drone to the drone fleet of the IRGC Air Force, the ability of intelligence aristocracy and operations to counter enemy threats will be developed and upgraded. Therefore report; In addition to military and defense applications, the Gaza UAV can carry out missions in forest monitoring, rescue operations and disaster relief, such as floods and earthquakes.
During the unveiling ceremony of a number of achievements in the field of drones and air defense, attended by the Commander of the Revolutionary Guard, Major General Hossein Salami, Zadeh said: “Today, with the grace of God and the efforts of scientists and specialists in the country, we are witnessing the unveiling of three strategic and important achievements that have been achieved in Under conditions of prohibition and maximum pressure from the enemy." He added that "with the discovery of the Gaza drone, the level of drones improved in Iran."
Zada spoke about the characteristics of the "Gaza" and explained that "the Gaza is capable of flying up to 35,000 feet with 35 hours of flying time, and it is capable of carrying 13 bombs on operational missions, as well as in reconnaissance and intelligence surveillance missions, covering a radius of 500 km." Zada also indicated that "at the end of this Iranian year ending on March 20, 2022, the operational and technical progress tests will be completed, and they will officially enter service next year."
The Commander of the Space Force spoke about the capabilities and features of the "Quds" radar system, and said: "We used previous experience of making radars in this system, and the feature of the radar" may "detect stealth aircraft in a radius of up to 500 km, and one of the features of it is rapid spread and movement.
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