Lithuania’s Armed Forces Set to Receive AeroVironment’s Switchblade 600 Kamikaze Drones in 2024
Switchblade 600 kamikaze drones made by the U.S. company AeroVironment are to enter service with the Armed Forces of Lithuania next year.
The Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence reported on this.
On December 1, the Minister of National Defense of Lithuania, Arvydas Anušauskas, visited the plant of the AeroVironment company in California, where he discussed the possibilities of further cooperation.
In December 2022, Militarnyi reported on the signing of a contract between the governments of Lithuania and the United States for the purchase of Switchblade 600 kamikaze drones.
Wahid Nawabi, AeroVironment’s Chairman of the Board and CEO, assured the Lithuanian minister that the drones will be delivered in 2024.
“We are the first country in the world to purchase the new Switchblade drone, other than the United States. This will be a really significant increase in the ability of our Armed Forces to redeploy, which will add up to 40 km to the effective range of defeating enemy equipment. We are watching its action in Ukraine,” Anušauskas said.
In October, Militarnyi reported that Ukrainian troops would receive more Switchblade 600 kamikaze drones.
Read more about Switchblade operation in an interview with a drone operator
The Switchblade 600 has a powerful warhead similar to the American-made Javelin anti-tank missile, which allows it to destroy heavy armored vehicles, particularly tanks.
This loitering munition, with a weight of 23 kg, is able to destroy targets through the top attack.
The drone can stay in the air for 40 minutes and travel 40 km during this time, as well as barrage in the air. The maximum flight speed is 185 km/h.
The drone is launched from a tubular launcher, which significantly reduces deployment time and allows it to be launched from any location.
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