The Hoplite

9M55K cargo rockets and 9N235 submunitions in Ukraine

N.R. Jenzen-Jones Video and images circulating on social media networks and in various online forums suggest that 9M55K cargo rockets containing 9N235 fragmentation submunitions may have been used in Kramatorsk, Ukraine. Armament Research Services (ARES) has previously documented these munitions in Syria. The 9M55K rocket is fired from the the 9K58 Smerch (Смерч; ‘Tornado’) 300

Continue Reading

Ukraine alleges Russian supply of 9M39 MANPADS missile to separatists

N.R. Jenzen-Jones & Michael Smallwood In a statement released yesterday, the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs alleged proof of the illicit transfer of Russian produced Man-Portable Air Defence Systems (MANPADS) into the hands of pro-Russian separatist fighters in Ukraine. According to the Ministry, outer packaging for a 9M39 MANPADS missile was recovered on 6 June

Continue Reading

2B9M Vasilek automatic mortar in service with Ansar al-Sham in Syria

N.R. Jenzen-Jones with Yuri Lyamin Ansar al-Sham (كتائب أنصار الشام; ‘Supporters of the Levant’), an Islamist militant group associated with the Islamic Front in Syria (الجبهة الإسلامية; al-Jabhat al-Islāmiyyah), have uploaded a YouTube video showing combatants firing a 2B9M automatic mortar near Mount Chalma, in Syria’s Kesab district. The 2B9M Vasilek (‘Cornflower’) is a breech-loaded, long recoil-operated

Continue Reading

Ukrainian Air Force strike Lugansk with S-8KOM rockets

Update 4/6/14: The OSCE’s Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM) released a statement yesterday which included some observations on this attack: In Luhansk the situation remained volatile. On 2 June, shortly after 15:00 hrs, rockets hit the occupied regional administration building. Based on the SMM’s limited observation these strikes were the result of non-guided rockets shot from an

Continue Reading

Russian MRO-A Rocket Launchers in Ukraine

Michael Smallwood Images emerging from Ukraine following fighting in Ukraine’s Donetsk region on the 25th of May show alleged pro-Russian Ukrainian separatist fighters in possession of Russian-made MRO-A rocket launchers. The MRO is a self-contained, disposable single shot 72.5 mm rocket launcher, sharing similarities with the larger, 93 mm RPO family to provide a lighter

Continue Reading

Iranian AM50 and Russian ORSIS T-5000 rifles in Iraq

Yuri Lyamin with Michael Smallwood Recent photos to emerge from Iraq show government troops with new Iranian  AM50 (sometimes written ‘AM-50’) anti-materiel rifles (AMR) and Russian ORSIS T-5000 sniper rifles. Whilst initially misidentified as the Austrian Steyr HS .50, the photos suggest that these rifles are in fact an Iranian produced copy of the HS .50, known

Continue Reading

Polish PPZR Grom MANPADS seized from pro-Russian Separatists in Ukraine

N.R. Jenzen-Jones An interesting video was released earlier today by the Ukraine Military TV YouTube channel. The video shows pro-Russian separatists being captured by Ukrainian forces, and documents the man-portable air defence system (MANPADS) allegedly seized with these combatants. The image above shows a Polish made PPZR (Przenośny Przeciwlotniczy Zestaw Rakietowy; portable anti-aircraft missile system

Continue Reading

ARES Research Report No.2: Iranian Falaq-1 and Falaq-2 Rockets in Syria

Armament Research Services is proud to release its second Research Report. Authored by N.R Jenzen-Jones, Yuri Lyamin and Galen Wright “Iranian Falaq-1 and Falaq-2 Rockets in Syria” documents the use of these weapons in Syria’s ongoing civil conflict, and provides a brief history and technical appraisal of the systems and their munitions. Below are some extracts

Continue Reading

Syrian Rebels Produce Homemade Anti-Materiel Rifles

Jonathan Ferguson The Syrian conflict continues to yield interesting expedient small arm designs. Syrian rebel forces have been documented craft producing anti-materiel rifles (AMRs). ARES has received video links (see below) that document the manufacture of this weapon, which appears in two variants. It is a homemade bolt-action anti-materiel rifle similar to and perhaps even inspired

Continue Reading

Type 84 Scatterable Anti-Tank Mines in Syria

N.R. Jenzen-Jones and Yuri Lyamin The Syrian conflict continues to see the use of new types of weapons by the various parties to the conflict.  On the 23rd April of this year, new footage emerged from the area near Sawaysa town in the Syrian province of Quneitra, showing the use of another new weapon: Chinese Type

Continue Reading