New Details of US Drone Shoot-Down Unveiled
Major Mohammad Ali Khodabakhsh of IRGC Air Defense in an Iranian television program unveiled new details about the US MQ-4C.
At 0004 on Thursday 20 June, a US MQ-4C drone takes off from Al Dhafrah airbase of UAE and flies in a route. The mission is surveillance and spying using its equipment. In military missions, intelligence is extremely important and it requires us to watch every boat and planes of the region, this drone is not an exception.
The drone in return flying route at 0400 violates our airspace at elevation of over 50,000 feet. The mother plane, a P-8 Poseidon, flies at 30,000 feet in close distance from another MQ-9. These three planes were under out watch to see which data are transferring between them. P-8 is a surveillance plane used for maritime environment, after Triton operation, a project developed to link MQ-4C with P-8.
P-8 has a crew of 30 persons, at the time of operation, it has 38 people on board. In some media it was said the plane had only 9 people aboard but US president stated it had a crew of 38 and appreciated it was not shot down. Our shoot-down was not failure of Triton project but it was a hard slap to the most high-tech of the world. USA talking about air superiority while we are prudence toward USA and if not, the story would be very different.
Shooting down this drone happens while it flies at over 50,000 feet and few planes can fly such high. These kind of planes such as U-2 and Triton were never been hit and U-2 was shot down once due to its pilot’s error. When we hit the drone at 50,000 feet, Islamic Republic of Iran is sending the signal that they do not have air superiority anymore and will see our response. We are serious in defending our airspace and it is our red line. We are prudence in southern border and Americans have not violated our borders neither, since they know if it happens, they face hard response.
Regarding the type of the drone, it was MQ-4C, which is one of the most advanced ones and only two of them are operational and we spotted it in Al Dhafrah. Regarding the claim that Americans used this drone to test our air defense system, we are talking about US terrorist regime, that if they know only for one percent that there will be a problem for their troops or equipment, the mission is aborted, immediately. Trump did it, too.
Another message of this operation was that even if American F-35 and F-22 come close to Iran, we treat them same. Every air defense system has an error coefficient, that they fire two or three missiles toward the target, even for American Patriot system but we show that to hit the drone, our “Sevom Khordad” system needs only one missile. Americans thought if they turn off the drone’s identification systems, since the drone is made of radiation absorbing materials and low radar irradiation geometry, we won’t see it. The fuselage is made of honeycomb structure between two hard panels which is stealth at a wide range of frequencies.
Sevom Khordad SAM is a sophisticated system, its initial idea was proposed in 2005 and was built by youth and experts of IRGC. It can hit targets up to 90,000 feet and in a range of 100 km.