The Banshee Jet 80+ aerial target was turned into a kamikaze drone in Ukraine

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The Banshee Jet 80+ aerial target was turned into a kamikaze drone in Ukraine
Banshee Jet 80+ UAV suppressed by Russian air defense


Ukrainian armed forces try to attack various targets on Russian territory every day using unmanned aerial vehicles. Recently, UAVs with jet engines, characterized by improved technical characteristics, have begun to be used in such actions. A new sample of this kind was discovered a few days ago. It is of British origin and was originally a target for air defense training.



New threat


About the appearance of a new jet by the enemy drone-kamikaze on February 19, the head of the Donetsk People's Republic Denis Pushilin said on social networks. According to him, the department of the Federal Security Service for the DPR, the military commandant’s office and the Russian National Guard discovered an air target over the Novoazovsky region of the republic and took the necessary measures.

Russian specialists successfully intercepted a detected enemy UAV and ensured its controlled landing. The obtained trophy was studied and the first conclusions were drawn. Thus, the landed drone turned out to be a Banshee Jet 80+ product from the British company QinetiQ. Previously, such devices had not appeared in the area of ​​the Special Operation to Protect Donbass.

It was established that the UAV carries a warhead in the form of an explosive device weighing 7 kg. The dangerous object was neutralized by destruction on the spot. In addition, specialists removed the control equipment from the drone and deciphered the flight mission. As it turned out, the target of the attack was one of the large civilian infrastructure facilities in Mariupol. The flight program included a turn over the Novoazovsky region and an approach to the target from the Taganrog Bay.

Fortunately, such a terrorist attack was prevented, and no one was injured in Mariupol. At the same time, the enemy revealed the presence of another type of unmanned aircraft weapon, and our air defense tested its strength in countering a previously unknown threat. The confrontation between the Ukrainian UAV and Russian air defense systems ended in victory for our fighters and specialists. This circumstance allows us to draw certain conclusions.


The characteristic tail section with two engine nozzles is visible

The interception report was accompanied by several photographs of the landed UAV. They depict an aircraft-type product, made according to the “tailless” design, having a spindle-shaped elongated fuselage, a delta wing and a keel. Also in the frame was the tail section of the drone with characteristic side air intakes and a pair of turbojet engine nozzles in the rear section. All external surfaces are painted in an “inconspicuous” gray color. It was the appearance features and the characteristic propulsion system that helped identify the type and origin of the drone.

Family member


The Banshee Jet 80+ is the latest member of the British-developed family of drones of the same name. The first product in this line, called Banshee, was developed in the early eighties by Target Technology Ltd., an unmanned aerial vehicle company. aviation. The Banshee UAV was created as a target for training air defense crews, capable of simulating modern air targets.

Subsequently, the original product was developed. While maintaining the general architecture and layout, the airframe design was refined, its materials were changed, and new engines and control systems were introduced. In addition, attempts have been made to expand functionality. Thus, in 2001, they introduced the Banshee 400 UAV with an optical-electronic station, designed for reconnaissance.

During various transformations, the Banshee project changed its “owner” several times. Currently, QinetiQ is developing new modifications and mass production. Its product catalog now includes several modifications of Banshee, which differ from each other. These are the single-engine Banshee Jet 40/40+, the twin-engine Jet 80/80+, their improved variant Banshee NG, as well as the Banshee Whirlwind with a pusher propeller.

The first customer of the Banshee series UAVs was predictably the British Armed Forces. They consistently bought various modifications of such equipment and used them for their intended purpose. The Banshee training targets turned out to be quite successful and attracted the attention of foreign customers. Since the mid-eighties, they have been supplied to almost 40 countries around the world.


The warhead is separate from the rest of the UAV

As it now turns out, Ukraine has become the next recipient of this equipment. She was recently given a number of targets for conversion into strike UAVs. However, the drones have retained their original role as a target - but the Russian air defense will now train on them.

Technical features


All versions of the Banshee UAV have a similar architecture, but differ in the exact composition of components, performance characteristics and capabilities. It is reported that products of the Jet 80+ modification, one of the latest and most technically advanced, came to Ukraine.

The Banshee Jet 80+ is a tailless drone made of composite material. The span of the delta wing reaches 2,5 m, the length, depending on the type of nose module of the target load, is up to 2,95 m. Height is 780 mm. Take-off weight depends on the load and should not exceed 70-80 kg.

The drone is equipped with two small-sized turbojet engines with a thrust of 45 kgf. With their help, it reaches a maximum speed of up to 720 km/h and rises to a height of more than 9,1 km. When fully refueled and used as an aerial target, the flight duration exceeds 45 minutes; flight range – at least 100 km. Changing the payload and fuel volume, as well as choosing optimal flight modes, make it possible to vary the achievable range and flight duration.

Take-off is carried out from a rail guide using a solid-fuel starting engine. When moving along a guide, the UAV picks up a speed of about 40-45 m/s, allowing it to stay in the air. If the target is not shot down during the flight, it is possible to land by parachute and then prepare for a new flight.


Elevons with markings in English

The Banshee Jet 80+ is equipped with a QinetiQ development control system, which has only the most basic functions. The autopilot uses satellite navigation and guides the drone along a predetermined route. In flight, the UAV can perform various maneuvers, incl. with a large overload. There is also a communication system for transmitting telemetry to the operator. Remote control is not provided.

The Banshee target can be equipped with bow compartments with various equipment necessary for training air defense crews. Replaceable modules are equipped with corner reflectors of various configurations, pyrotechnic simulators of turbojet engines, simulators of radar seekers, etc. Some load cases can be used together.

In the case of the Ukrainian kamikaze drone, the original load was removed and a 7 kg high-explosive fragmentation warhead was installed in its place. Such a warhead can inflict only limited damage to some targets, primarily manpower and unprotected buildings.

Limited opportunities


Great Britain is one of the most active patrons of the Kyiv regime and regularly transfers to it its existing weapons and equipment. In addition, an agreement was recently signed to continue and expand such cooperation in the future. One of the areas of cooperation is the supply of UAVs of various types, incl. intended to strike Russian territory.

As it became known, one of the recent deliveries included Banshee Jet 80+ targets, which were going to be converted into kamikaze drones. They have already been prepared and started to be used. At the same time, the only currently known case of using the “Tower” ended in failure - Russian air defense detected and suppressed such a target. The UAV actually landed and did not receive much damage, which made it possible to study it and determine its route.


Banshee target before launch from the deck of a ship

It can be assumed that the Banshee Jet 80+ has very limited combat potential due to its design features. Thus, the range and duration of the flight, in any mode, allows you to attack only targets in tactical depth, but no further. At the same time, the UAV is only able to follow a given route and cannot respond to changes in the situation, which makes it an easier target. Finally, the warhead weighing only 7 kg seriously limits the damage inflicted and the effectiveness of the entire mission.

With all this, the Banshee is not a difficult target for our air defense. As practice has shown, modern means are capable of detecting and suppressing such a device in time - despite all measures to reduce visibility, etc. It can be assumed that the use of anti-aircraft missiles against such a target will also show the required effectiveness.

Predictable outcome


Thus, London continues to help Kyiv and hopes to harm Russia by doing so. The next step in this matter was the delivery of an undisclosed number of Banshee Jet 80+ target drones for use in a non-standard configuration. However, the hopes of the British and Ukrainian sides are no longer justified, and the UAVs are suffering their first losses.

It should be noted that Banshee is not the first jet attack UAV in service with Ukrainian forces. At the beginning of February, our troops shot down a similar product of an unknown model. They also tried to use it to attack a Russian target, but were not successful. We can now expect the use of kamikaze jet drones to continue. And they will add to the lists of successfully hit and suppressed air targets.
7 comments
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  1. +5
    21 February 2024 07: 11
    It is reported that products of the Jet 80+ modification, one of the latest and most technically advanced, came to Ukraine.

    The Banshee Jet 80+ is equipped with a QinetiQ development control system, which has only the most basic functions. The autopilot uses satellite navigation and guides the drone along a predetermined route. In flight, the UAV can perform various maneuvers, incl. with a large overload. There is also a communication system for transmitting telemetry to the operator. Remote control is not provided.

    Russian specialists successfully intercepted a detected enemy UAV and ensured its controlled landing.

    How!!!??? belay
    1. +4
      21 February 2024 08: 18
      Quote: Adrey
      How!!!???

      Both pooped and .... This unmanned eroplane has the function of landing at the end of the flight mission, if it has not been destroyed by anti-aircraft gunners before! It is controlled according to a program with correction using GPS..."Organized" with the help of electronic warfare, substitution of the GPS signal...Eroplan "thinks" that it has completed the task and returned "home"! Something like this happened in the case of the Iranians landing the secret American reconnaissance UAV RQ-170... I think so!
  2. +1
    21 February 2024 08: 02
    "Banshee"? Reminds me of something! Either a howling mythical creature from Irish folklore... or (I’m silent, I’m silent!)...
  3. The comment was deleted.
  4. +3
    21 February 2024 15: 44
    Russian specialists successfully intercepted a detected enemy UAV and ensured its controlled landing.

    He lands on a parachute, which does not exist (it’s clear why - the Ukrainians did not plan to land him).
    No traces of damage from air defense are visible. The most realistic explanation is that it fell as a result of some kind of failure. Moreover, what is written about “interception” is frankly vague.
  5. +1
    22 February 2024 19: 34
    and who is stopping us from redirecting it towards the owners. Let them try to feel the explosion in the London area firsthand! , and then let the dancers try to justify themselves
  6. 0
    April 11 2024 18: 29
    How was the author doing in physics school? 100 km distance, 45 minutes of flight and a speed of 720 km/h somehow do not add up. Even if the cruising speed is, say, 400, then in 45 minutes it will fly 300 km
  7. 0
    19 June 2024 10: 07
    Quote: AC130 Ganship
    How was the author doing in physics school? 100 km distance, 45 minutes of flight and a speed of 720 km/h somehow do not add up. Even if the cruising speed is, say, 400, then in 45 minutes it will fly 300 km

    What if you think about it, for example? Do they teach you to think at school? Or just arithmetic? MUST the target aircraft fly in a straight line? At top speed?