In 2018, the Russian Ministry of Defense will adopt Drel (“drill”) 500 kg gliding bomb cartridges, Techmash CEO Vladimir Lepin told Interfax in an interview.
“State tests of the new basic model of a gliding bomb cartridge with a 500 kg caliber, equipped with self-targeting combat elements, began in 2016. The state tests are being carried out according to the client’s program (the Russian Defense Ministry), and after they are completed successfully in 2018, there are plans to adopt this item into the armament,” Lepin observed.
One Drel bomb is capable of destroying an enemy’s firing battery or a convoy of tanks. The plane which drops the bomb does not need to be in the enemy’s anti-air defense zone, since the bomb can glide for dozens of kilometers, despite the absence of an engine.
Once it has left the carrier, the Drel has a range of more than 30 km, and is virtually invisible to radars.