Among the many weapons being used by the Ukrainian military to inflict losses on the Russian invasion forces, several have risen to prominence in the country and on social media. Alongside ‘St Javelin’ and the ‘Ghost of Kiev’ which have mythologised the eponymous anti-tank missile and the Ukrainian air force’s Mig-29 fighters, the Bayraktar TB-2 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has gained a symbolic place in the Ukrainian defensive arsenal.
The TB-2 is a relatively small medium-altitude long endurance class drone. It weighs around half a ton, cruises at 70 knots (80 mph), and can carry up to four small laser-guided bombs with a practical engagement range of around 8km. Despite its unassuming size and payload, the TB-2 has risen to prominence by destroying significant numbers of armoured vehicles and short-range air defence systems in Syria, Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh and now most recently in Ukraine.