Video: Ukrainian Forces Fire UK RAF's Brimstone Missiles Remade to Be Launched From Truck
03:15 GMT 13.05.2022 (Updated: 15:19 GMT 28.05.2023)
Last month, the UK announced that its Brimstone precision-guided missiles would be sent to Ukraine, thus implying that the revamp and delivery of the system took a short amount of time.
A video of the Ukrainian military firing ground-launched Brimstone missiles has emerged on social media this week, and what makes this video from the special military operation area peculiar is that it seems to be the first documented improvised ground use of these missiles, initially designed for aviation.
As the War Zone noted,
the video in question was also the first video of a Brimstone missile confirmed to be in Ukraine, as well as being shot from a launcher put in the back of a truck.
While the circumstances surrounding the recorded launch are unknown, it's believed the incident was likely part of a training exercise. In the video, a barrage of three missiles can be seen being shot from an ordinary truck covered with tarpaulin.
The Brimstone missile family, developed by the European missile consortium MBDA, consists of ground, surface, and air-launched weapons that are a little under 1.8 meters long and weigh 50 kg.
The most crucial feature is that it has a range of 12 to 20+ km, with the lower end of that range being more likely for land and surface-launched uses, the latter of which is known as the Sea Spear. Its guidance system uses an active millimetric-wave radar seeker to provide all-weather, day-and-night capability.
Brimstone can launch salvo strikes and find targets on its own once it reaches a chosen target region. It is said to perform well in knocking down armor,
artillery, and watercraft formations because of this, according to experts.
According to the War Zone's report, the UK has reportedly developed the truck-mounted ground-launch mechanism seen in the footage exclusively for Ukraine. The idea behind the accelerated development procedure, by which the UK completed the delivery on such a short schedule, was allegedly to clamp a triple Brimstone launcher rack used on aircraft onto a truck-mounted chassis.
This type of improvised configuration has been seen before in Brimstone testing, especially with the surface-launched Sea Spear variant, according to the videos from its developers.
According to the report, a Brimstone missile allegedly did not reach its target, which was thought to be in Ukraine's Zaporozhye region, so the Russian forces are said to have captured the weapon in its entirety.
A weapons tracking account
on Twitter showed the recovery of a previously detonated Brimstone missile presumably near Balakliia, Kharkov Oblast, though it was, of course, unclear whether this implies it hit its intended target.
The deliveries of lethal weapons and heavy hardware to Ukraine are reportedly being considered on the assumption that if enough equipment is sent from Western countries, Kiev would be able to not only push back the Russian military as it continues its demilitarization and "denazification" effort, but also change the tide on the battlefield.