As of November 1, British intelligence has identified Russia’s Lancet small one-way-attack uncrewed aerial systems (OWA UAVs) as a pivotal and highly effective addition to Russia’s capabilities in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Over the last 12 months, these UAVs have proven to be a game-changer, significantly altering the dynamics of the war.
Lancet UAVs are engineered to be piloted over enemy territory, patiently waiting for a target to be identified. Once a target is pinpointed, these drones swiftly dive toward it and detonate, delivering a deadly payload. Manufactured by the ZALA Aero Group, Lancet UAVs are often deployed alongside small, unarmed Orlan 10 UAVs, which Russia uses for target spotting. Remarkably, Ukraine has also had success with its own small OWA UAVs, reflecting the evolving nature of warfare in the region.
One of the most notable applications of Lancet UAVs is in attacking priority targets, where they have become increasingly prominent in the critical counter-battery fight. These drones are particularly effective in striking enemy artillery positions, disrupting the adversary’s firepower.
Traditionally, Russia has employed small UAVs primarily for reconnaissance purposes. However, Lancet’s attack capability represents a significant shift in how Russia employs this category of weapons. This innovation underscores the adaptability and evolution of military technology in the ongoing conflict, posing new challenges for Ukraine and its allies.
The use of Lancet UAVs highlights the need for constant vigilance and adaptation in the face of evolving warfare tactics, as both sides in the conflict continue to deploy and develop cutting-edge technologies to gain the upper hand.