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Monday 13 May 2013 17:04
First Iranian air-to-air combat drone
H-110 Sarir drone is the first Iranian air-to-air combat drone, almost unique in its kind in the world.
First Iranian air-to-air combat drone

Khatam al-Anbiya Construction Headquarters Sarir drone is significant in two features. First is its similarity to its foreign drones, and the second, is its mission type; which includes air-to-air combat in addition to surveillance mission.

The drone plays the role of an air platform, almost the same ‘air patrolling,’ a mission for manned fighter jets such as Phantom F-4 and Tomcat F-14 during the Sacred Defense years; and now, MIG-29 Fulcrum plays the same role, meeting part of the need for air patrolling due to limits of the drone capabilities in terms of combat facilities carrying and its sensor weights.

Sarir drone

However, the low capabilities of drones are compensated for by features such as their sheer number, high flight endurance compared to manned fighter jets, low probability of being identified by the enemy, lower costs of flight, and lower costs of damage inflicted in the case of accident or downing, and, depending on the drone used, provides marginal advantages.

A point about Sarir H-110, whose H in its name is reminiscent of Iran’s other defensive drone, Hazem, is its similarity to RQ-5 drone, an Israeli made and US Northrop-Grumman developed drone.

Hunter drone

Like Hunter, Sarir (meaning "Throne") also uses a piston propeller engine in front of the body and pulling engine in the extremes of the wings; trapezoidal wings without retrogressive angle in attacking front, and a bit of retrogressive angle in escaping edges, wing-to-body connection, independent control levels on wings, H-shaped tail or twin boom tails, perpendicular surface tail with inward angle, similar control surfaces on perpendicular and horizontal tails, and a combat facility carrying under each wing (similar to MQ-5 Hunter), and thus, it is indicative of the fact that Iranian designers had had an eye to its foreign model, but differences in body and wing cross-section indicate independent designing route.

Martial models of Hunter

It should be noted that the fact of having two engines for the drone increases its endurance and its reliability in long-term flights, or during dangerous routes; and it decreases air resistance and drone weight compared to these in the situation where two engines are installed in both sides of the wing and body, however, fuel consumption in general is increased compared to one-engine drone with similar technology.

It seems also that arms installed under Sarir’s wing during April parade, is shoulder-launched missile of Misagh-1. This missile is 1.65 in length, and can reach at 5000m range, 4000m flight cap, and twice the speed of sound when launched from the surface (660m/s), which would be improved when launched from a drone.

Misaqh-1 missile

This missile and its newer models will be a competent weapon against helicopters and drones, Cruise missiles, high-speed drones and air fighters (in some flight conditions).

Given the its detentions, and similarity to Hunter, its length can be estimated as 6 to 7m, wing span of 8 to 9m, and its height less than 2m. if Sarir is designed based on Hunter characteristics, its flight endurance can be improved 8 to 12 hours, its flight cap from 3500m to 5500m, and its carrying capacity to 80 to 100kg, which would increase its missile-carrying capabilities.

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