Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan underlined Iran’s self-sufficiency in the marine industry, and said the country’s home-made drones are faced with no limitation in their flight time and ceiling.
“We can design 500-ton submarines from top to toe and we are moving towards new propulsion systems to decrease the noise and increase their durability in water,” Dehqan said, addressing a ceremony to unveil two new home-made cruise missiles and two new drones in Tehran on Sunday participated by President Hassan Rouhani and other senior officials.
He further pointed to Iran’s capabilities in building Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), and said Iran’s pilotless planes have been designed and built on the basis of three features, “flight ceiling, flight durability and defeating enemy’s electronic warfare”.
“We don’t have any problem with regard to the first two issues and God willing we are trying resolve the remaining problems in area of electronic warfare,” he added.
Dehqan also elaborated on Iran’s capabilities in building ground-to-ground missiles, and said, “In this field, we have high capabilities (in area of missile production) in different ranges both with solid and liquid fuel (propulsion systems), and we have been seeking to increase the range, destruction power, preciseness and maintenance time and reduce the launch time.”
He further explained that Iran has achieved all the above-mentioned goals with regard to various types of missiles, adding that the defense industries are now just trying to maximize “the precision capability of long-range missiles” as the only remaining goal.
He underlined the Iranian defense industry’s focus on the sonar systems, and said, “Today, our cruise missiles also have a 300-km range, enabling us to enjoy much capability on the scene of the seas.”
The defense minister pointed to the country’s aviation industry and the efforts made to prolong the life-time of Iran’s air fleet, and said, “We have close cooperation with the Armed Forces in this field and for instance, we have managed to design and build defense systems, avionics systems and life-time prolonging system in F4 fighter jets through conceptual designing taken from similar systems.”
Iran has recently made giant advancements in aerospace industries, specially in designing and manufacturing pilotless drones.
In September 2012, Iran announced that it has started using UAVs in its air defense units as part of its broader plans for strengthening the country’s air defense capability.
In December 2013, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari said the IRGC is capable of mounting guided missiles and bombs on its drones.
“We have recently acquired the capability to mount guided and precision-targeting missiles with pinpointing capability and bombs on drones, which is actually among branches of advanced hi-tech in this field,” Jafari told reporters in Tehran in December.
He referred to Iran’s latest achievements in building drones, and said, “Our latest achievement in this regard is a drone which can fly for 30 hours and high-speed engines can increase its range.”
Also in November, Dehqan announced that Iran’s new drone enjoys unique strategic capabilities, including 30-hour-long flight durability, and has been developed for combat and surveillance missions.
Dehqan said the new drone, ‘Fotros’, has been designed and built by the Iranian Airplane Manufacturing Industries Company affiliated to the Defense Ministry’s Aviation Industries in cooperation with knowledge-based companies and academic centers and on the basis of the needs of the country’s Armed Forces.
“This strategic drone has an operational range of 2,000 kilometers, and can fly to a ceiling of 25,000 feet in altitude for 16 to 30 hours, and these specifications enable it to conduct combat missions in addition to surveillance and reconnaissance missions,” Dehqan said addressing a ceremony held in Tehran to unveil the new drone.
The minister said Fotros can be armed with various types of “air-to-surface missiles and rockets”.
He underlined that the reliability test of the drone has been successfully conducted in the country’s laboratories and test centers, including standard international land tests at low, medium and high speed, adding that test results have been even better than what was expected.
The minister further pointed to the missions which could be done by Fotros in detail, and said the drone can be used for “protecting land and sea borders, monitoring oil pipelines, telecommunication lines and road traffic control, monitoring affected areas during earthquakes, blaze and floods, and environment protection”, adding that it can send “real-time photos and images while it is on a missions”.
He reiterated that Iran’s Defense Ministry has become self-sufficient in designing and manufacturing different kinds of defensive, offensive and surveillance drones.
General Dehqan underlined that Iranian researchers were then working on various models and designs of drones according to the country’s defensive needs.
Also in September 2012, Iran announced that it has started using UAVs for its air defense units as part of its broader plans for strengthening the country’s air defense capability.
Speaking to reporters on the occasion of the National Day of Air Defense here in Tehran on September 3, 2012, Commander of Iran’s Air Defense Unit Brigadier General Farzad Esmayeeli said Iran has equipped its air defense units with Haazem drones. Haazem is a drone designed and manufactured by Iranian air defense experts in three short, mid and long range models and for air defense missions.
The drone can be used as a target for air defense systems and also for reconnaissance missions.
The UAV can also be equipped with missiles and used for aerial bombardments as well.