Drones have been an integral part of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Ukraine’s elite AeroRozvedka is a tactical drone unit. And in the air, the drones have served well in reconnaissance and attack operations.
Since Russia invaded, Ukraine has always been the underdog. Russia has a huge advantage in the number of soldiers and weapons. Armed with Turkish Bayraktar TB2s and Elon Musk’s StarLink system the military sent flights throughout Ukraine. And in the early days, Ukraine was winning the drone war.
The effectiveness of the Ukraine unit initially dominated the news. And there was lots of video evidence on social media of drone hits on Putin’s tanks and battleships.
Russian advances were slow thanks mainly to Ukraine’s unique air force made up mainly of AeroRozvedka drones.
It looks like after over three months of warfare Russia is ramping up its air defense systems and electronic systems. And they are jamming and shooting down more Ukrainian unmanned fliers.
Russia tracks and attacks
Samuel Bendett is an expert in unmanned and robotic military systems. He works with the Center for Naval Analysis.