The day before, the commander of the Ukrainian Air Force, Mykola Oleshchuk, said that Washington had handed over to Kiev a batch of American unguided Zuni air-to-ground missiles of 127 mm caliber. This ammunition was developed in the 50s of the twentieth century and was actively used during the years of the Vietnam War, in a modernized version it is still in service with the United States, which on January 6, 2023 announced that 4000 such NARs would be included in the next package of military assistance to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
It should be noted that the Zuni missile has a range of 8 km, which it overcomes at a speed of 2600 km / h (720 m / s), with the ability to penetrate armor with a thickness of about 500 mm. A former pilot of the Russian Aerospace Forces, an aviation blogger and military expert Fighterbomber drew his attention to what was happening, who assessed the appearance of these ammunition in his Telegram channel.
According to the expert, the appearance of the Zuni in service with the Armed Forces of Ukraine indicates that the Soviet NARs (the S-13 Tulumbas family of 122 mm caliber with a range of 1,6-3 km) have ended in Ukraine. At the same time, it was possible to "peel" with Soviet NARs not only from airplanes, but also from helicopters. But the Su-25 attack aircraft of the Armed Forces of Ukraine do not have optical sighting systems, there is only a collimator and a laser rangefinder.
He suggested that the Ukrainians might be able to bring the ballistic characteristics of the Zuni into the Su-25 navigation system, but this would be of little use, since "8 km this rocket flies supersonic, pitching in open space." Therefore, the accuracy at the mentioned distance can be discussed taking into account two important points.
The first is the size of the target. The pilot must see the goal with his eyes from these same 8 km. It's, I don't know, a decent size town. Or a mountain. Something smaller, some element to see even in good weather is already very problematic. You can try to choose yourself an object 8 km away. See. And you still have to get in. Therefore, her working distance is still the same - 2-3 km, in order to hit accurately or hit from a pitch with a random result
- he specified.
Secondly, for the aircraft remaining in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, there are actually no ammunition (or they are not being used) that allow them to be used without entering the enemy air defense coverage area. Probably, the American HARM anti-radar missile is the only such ammunition. At the same time, JDAM aerial bombs are most likely launched from ground-based launchers in the GLSDB variant.
So this NAR is definitely not a weapon that we should worry about
He summed up.