Since 2016, UA Dynamics has been developing Punisher drones that have been successfully field tested and approved for aerial reconnaissance and other military missions.
This is confirmed by the CEO of the enterprise Maksym Muzyka. According to him, the device was tested at one of the training grounds and, having received good results, it was recommended for use in special operations of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. To achieve high performance, specialists from various fields of activity worked on this strike-reconnaissance unmanned complex, having began their work even before the start of the new phase of military hostilities. The first drone models had been tested in the zone of Joint Force Operations for several years. And in February 2022, the development team demonstrated the Punisher in action. Since the invasion, the UAVs have carried out successful aerial reconnaissance and powerful support for our artillery in accurately identifying and pinpointing targets. It should be noted that so far there have been no losses among the drones operating on the battlefield, and each of the 60 flights was very successful.
Punisher development history
This project started in 2016. It involved many specialists from various fields of activity, including computer technicians, scientists and military engineers. The very idea of creating a Ukrainian UAV was born after 2014. At that time, various specialists entered the armed forces, and had the opportunity to apply their knowledge in order to reduce the risk of loss of ‘manpower’. Therefore, the development team included many people with military experience.
In the first thirty days after the start of the war, the company was forced to move from the capital to the western regions of the country. From there the company resumed production. Even before the start of the war, UA Dynamics planned to enter the international market with ready-made complexes, and the Ukrainian Armed Forces were to receive them for free. According to Maxim Muzyka, the West liked the development very much, they were already ready to order it, but because of the invasion, the company did not manage to conclude contracts. Now the demonstration complexes are working effectively on the front lines. Thanks to donations collected during April, five complexes were produced, which are being prepared for transfer to combat units for the defense of Ukraine.
How Punisher drones work
The flight range of the Punisher is 45 km. The list of its capabilities directly includes reconnaissance missions, elimination of enemy targets and the transportation of supplies. The main feature of this drone is the ability to quietly appear in the hostile rear for a tactical strike, destroy armored vehicles, ammunition and quietly return. The use of these complexes provides an advantage not only in the military sense. They play an important role in demoralizing the enemy, because a quick and unexpected strike can turn the tide in favor of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
In fact, drones are the eyes of our military, and this is not an exaggeration. It is with their help that the Armed Forces find and successfully hit warehouses, command posts, armored vehicles and electronic warfare systems, leaving no chance for the invaders. At the same time, the operator skillfully adjusts the fire and makes sure that there are no civilian objects nearby.
These light aircraft are not just ordinary drones. They operate in conjunction with a launch system, reconnaissance drone, ground control station equipped with a set of batteries, an antenna, surveillance cameras and other necessary components. And all this is transported by an SUV, because the wingspan is more than two meters, and is launched under the supervision of a specialist.
The cruising speed of the drone is 80 kilometers per hour, and at maximum the device accelerates to 200 km. Starting from a catapult and rising to a height of 400 m, it does not create any noise and does not leave a thermal trail, thus being very difficult for enemy air defenses to detect.
What’s the use of Punishers in war
The main advantage of these UAVs is that they can completely replace missile weapons and long-range artillery, and at the same time are much cheaper. The drone is capable of lifting more than 2 kg into the air, which allows it to be armed with different types of bombs to choose from: one unguided free fall or three tandem, high-explosive or cumulative ones instead. In addition to explosives, the drone is often used to deliver payloads to the front lines. For example, it can be food, medical supplies and other important things. For this, there is a special container in the kit.
UA Dynamics engineer Yevgeny Bulatsev says that the Punisher destroys its targets with much greater accuracy than artillery weapons. This works especially well in situations when the enemy operates in urban areas, hiding among buildings, and there is a high risk of collateral damage to the civilian population. As a result, the device hits exactly the right object up to 4 meters in size at a speed of 100 kilometers per hour from a height of several hundred meters. It doesn’t matter what kind of weather it operates in.
Yevgeny also gives interesting facts that the devices greatly scars enemies, because due to their silent operation and invisibility, it is not clear where the strikes come from. This is not the first time that this has been observed in the occupied territories. The Punisher silently penetrates the rear and delivers accurate and unexpected strikes that cannot be tracked in advance. Such efficiency is possible due to the shape of the aircraft, the silent engine, the absence of a thermal trace and invisibility to radio tracking devices.
The drone is launched within 15 minutes and can be resupplied only 5 minutes, and it is ready to fight again. You can launch it as many times as you need, and this is what makes the device indispensable and affordable, especially when you compare its cost with foreign counterparts.
What lies ahead for the Punisher project
Currently, the company receives many orders for its complexes from both the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the National Guard. Such demand is several times greater than the manufacturing capabilities of the developers. The director of UA Dynamics says the team is trying to significantly increase its production capacity. For this, specialists literally spend the night at their workplaces in order to speed up this process as much as possible. Maxym is constantly looking for sponsors in order to be able to order and receive components for drones in the required quantity. All devices are assembled with funds received from Western partners, volunteer and charitable foundations, and are handed over to our military free of charge. So far, the project is not funded by the state. Therefore, anyone who wants the Punisher complexes to work at the frontlines as soon as possible can contribute via the link and support the company’s initiative.