Did Iranian Navy Just Receive an Underwater Drone?

  • Aishwarya Rakesh
  • 09:29 AM, May 30, 2020
  • 2514
Did Iranian Navy Just Receive an Underwater Drone?
Image published by IRNA showing the Iranian Navy's "mystery" vessel

In a ceremony held to induct over a 100 missile-launching speed boats to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp’s Navy (IRGC-N), a vessel that appeared to be a large Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) made its first public appearance.

“Did Iran just show us an Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) prototype? Among the 112 small boats/craft received by IRCN today, this oddity was shown – an unidentified apparent submersible/submarine,” Joseph H Dempsey, Research Associate for Defense & Military Analysis at IISS, tweeted May 29.

Did Iranian Navy Just Receive an Underwater Drone?

The mystery vessel could either be a mini-submarine or a large UUV, with many experts leaning to prefer the latter.

The vessel appears to be smaller in size than the Iranian Navy’s Ghadir-class mini-submarines, and has no apparent crew access. Sail (starboard casing removed) has sensor masts and possible diesel engine snorkel, the expert noted.

Ghadir submarines are capable of launching subsurface-to-surface missiles, torpedoes and mines. First two boats joined Iran’s Navy in November 2018.

Did Iranian Navy Just Receive an Underwater Drone?
Other vessels inducted by the Iranian Navy on May 29

“Also note the [temporary] crew position complete with joystick for initial surface trials,” Dempsey added.

The other military equipment commissioned to IRGN-C service include missile and rocket armed fast attack craft (FACs), speed boats and underwater chariots for commando frogmen, and small wings-in-ground-effect aircraft.

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