Ukraine has decided not to wait idly for the arrival of weapons from abroad and to launch its own systems in the meantime, such as the Vilkha-M, a Soviet-era BM-30 Smerch artillery missile improved from 7.6 meters long with a range of 110 kilometers and a 300mm warhead that weighs around 220 kilograms. Its range would be greater, according to Ukrainian sources, than the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) provided by the United States, being used from the MRLS HIMARS.
The kyiv government claims that the Vilkha-M can strike targets with excellent precision. The weapon was developed by the state-owned Kyivskoe Konstruktorskoe Bureau Luch. Among the characteristics related to this new ammunition, would have guidance via GPS, being assisted by “gas rudders”, a kind of perforations inside the body of the projectiles, from which some type of propellant gas is emitted in order to make the necessary corrections and stabilization during the flight phase.
The same Ukrainian government sources assure that the country is developing new versions of the guided rocket compatible with the Vilkha-M for the offensive of the kyiv Army towards the Azov Sea. The objective would be to produce a munition capable of hitting targets at distances of 150 kilometers away; representing half the range of the ATACMS missiles (which the United States for the moment refuses to deliver to Ukraine), which can attack targets up to 300 kilometers away.
The head of the National Association of the Defense Industry of Ukraine Ivan Vinnyk confirmed that the Vilkha-M multiple launch rocket system is used on the battlefield. However, he did not answer the question in which direction of the front.
Recently it was learned that there had been several explosions around the city of Mariupol, occupied by Russia and located about 80 kilometers from the battlefront, and there had been speculation that it had been attacked with long-range US rockets. Now it is suspected that it could be these missiles, which with their 110 kilometer capacity, could have been perfectly fired from the Ukrainian zone, reaching their objective without difficulty.
To date no one knew of the existence of this weapon. Vinnyk affirms that it has been secretly developed and manufactured since 2018 and that some 100 units would have been manufactured.