Iran Missiles

Persian Gulf

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Khorramshahr-1/2 MRBM:

The Khorramshahr is Iran's most advanced ballistic missile. It is liquid fuelled and based on the North Korean Hwasong-10 (which is itself based on the Soviet R-27). It has a diameter of 1.5m, length of 13m and weighs 20,000kg (20 tonnes).

The Khorramshahr was first unveiled in January 2017. It was tested twice - in July 2016 and July 2017 (one test failed and one was a success). The Khorramshahr has a warhead of 1800kg and range of 2000km. It was reported that the Khorramshahr could carry multiple (3) warheads, but it's not clear that MIRV technology has been mastered. It is clear that the warhead is terminally-guided, however.

The Khorramshahr is a huge step forward for Iran's BM because it uses new fuel (UDMH - based on the R-27 as mentioned above), new (vernier) engines and it is Iran's largest BM by diameter (the previous largest BM had a 1.25m diameter). This suggests a transition from Scud variants (such as the Shahab-3) to a line of missiles derived from the far more potent Soviet R-27.

This can be seen when we compare the Khorramshahr to the Shahab-3 and its improved variants (Ghadr and Emad):
--> Shahab-3: 1200km range with 1000kg warhead (2000m CEP)
--> Ghadr: 1800km range with 800kg warhead (300m CEP)
--> Emad: 1800km range with 750kg warhead (30m CEP)
--> Khorramshahr: 2000km range with 1800kg warhead (250m CEP)
--> Khorramshahr-2: 2000km range with 1500kg warhead (claimed <30m CEP)

As you can see, the Khorramshahr represents a huge advance for Iran's BM arsenal. Indeed, the 1800kg warhead seems to be a political move to keep the Khorramshahr within the artificial 2000km self-imposed range limit (with a 750kg warhead the Khorramshahr is likely to have a range of 3500-4000km).

The Khorramshahr-2, a new and improved variant, was test fired in December 2018 (successfully). The Khorramshahr-2 has an Emad-style guided warhead and, consequently, a smaller warhead of 1500kg (still at the 2000km range). Video footage of the successful test of the Khorramshahr-2 was released in February 2019 (posted below).

Looking forward, the Khorramshahr represents a shift from SCUD-based missiles to R-27-based missiles due to the new engines and fuel mastered on the Khorramshahr. These new engines could be used on Iran's future SLVs to carry much heavier satellites into orbit. The next stage for Iran's MRBMs, in my opinion, will be to develop MIRV technology. For Iran's BMs in general, the Emad guided warhead is likely to be retrospectively fitted onto Shahab-3 generation of BMs (this has already been seen in the Qiam-2 SRBM) and the new engine/fuel technology could be used to build smaller, more powerful and more tactical BMs across the board.

Khorramshahr-1 and Khorramshahr-2:





Footage of successful Khorramshahr-2 launch (December 2018):

 
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Persian Gulf

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Iran Missiles Force.

|A|Ashoura (missile) |B| BM25 Musudan |F| Fajr 7- Fajr-3 (missile)- Fateh-110 |G| Ghadr-110 |N| Naze'at |P| Persian Gulf (missile) Project Koussar |Q| Qiam 1 |S|Safir (rocket)-Sejjil-Shahab-1Shahab-2 Shahab-3 - Shahab-4 - Shahab-5 - Shahab-6 |Z| Zelzal-1 - Zelzal-2 - Zelzal-3.
Perhaps you can amend this post please because Iran's naming of missiles is notoriously stupid and complicated so Wikipedia has made some mistakes! (I also see this post was made 5 years ago, so naturally some categories have been clarified and there is a lot to update)

Main points:
- No one really knows about the Ashoura, but it appears to be a fully solid-fuel variant of the Ghadr-110.
- The BM-25 Musudan is more commonly known as the Hwasong-10 (North Korea) and exists in Iran only as the Khorramshahr (there were rumours in the media that Iran had acquired some Musudan missiles many years ago, but these were never shown and only in 2017 was Iran's improved version of the Musudan revealed - the Khorramshahr, so I think it is best just to use that name)
- Shahab 4/5/6 don't exist - they are just (Western) media speculations that never came to fruition (there are some variants of the Shahab-3 like 3A/3B/3C/3D, these are incremental upgrades though).
- Safir/Simorgh are SLVs not missiles, so they don't really belong in the same category.
- I wouldn't put Zelzal in this category of missiles either, instead I would put Fateh 110, Fateh 313 (and Fateh Mobin seeker version), Zolfaqar (and anti-ship version), Qiam-1/2, Dezful (I think I will make a post about the new Dezful missile later)
- Sejjil-1/2 is also important
 
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Persian Gulf

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Dezful MRBM (Fateh-class SSM):

The Dezful MRBM is the latest generation of the solid-fuel, single-stage Fateh class of SRBMs (though with the Dezful the Fateh class has now expanded into MRBM). Fateh-class is quasi-ballistic, meaning that it doesn't follow a ballistic trajectory or leave the atmosphere, posing different challenges to ABM systems (especially if Zolfaqar/Dezful missiles are launched with Qiam BMs for example, this would be a nightmare for the target force to defend against (not to even mention Soumar/Hoveizeh cruise missiles)).

The Fateh class was created to replace the unguided Zelzal class of rockets developed in the '90s. The first generation of the single-stage solid-fuel Fateh class of SSM was unveiled in 2002 with a range of 200km and 500kg warhead.

The second generation was released in 2004 with an upgraded range of 250km. The third and fourth generations, unveiled in 2010 and and 2012, increased the range to 300km (with the same 500kg warhead) and focused on improving accuracy.

The next significant upgrade came in 2015 with the Fateh-313, with an improved range of 500km.

Then in 2016 the Zolfaqar was unveiled with a range of 700km. The Zolfaqar is 1m longer than the Fateh-110 (10m vs 9m) and has a 500kg submunition warhead. The Zolfaqar was used in July 2017 to strike an IS base in Syria 600km from Iran using 6 Zolfaqar missiles.

In August 2018 the Fateh-Mobin was unveiled, with an upgraded EO seeker claiming a CEP <10m. Later statements by Iranian military officials stated that the Mobin seeker would be fitted on the Zolfaqar and other Fateh-class missiles to substantially improve their accuracy.

Finally, the latest and most advanced iteration of the Fateh class was revealed in February 2019: the Dezful missile. First rumoured in 2017, the Dezful is an upgrade to the Zolfaqar missile with a 1000km range and 2x the destructive power (with the same 500kg warhead). The Dezful is slightly larger and heavier than the Zolfaqar and uses a 4 wheel TEL (instead of the 3-wheeled TEL for the Zolfaqar). Iranian officials didn't explain how the Dezful achieves 2x the destructive power of the Zolfaqar's warhead, but hinted at new explosive materials/methods (such as being thermobaric). The Dezful was revealed in a video showing an underground missile 'city' at an undisclosed location.

[Anti-ship versions of the Fateh-class BMs have also been developed, such as Persian Gulf ASBM, Hormoz-1/2 anti-radiation/ship BM, Zolfaqar ASBM variant - these compliment Iran's range of anti-ship cruise missiles and torpedos.]

Photos and video of Dezful unveiling and test (and the underground missile city):

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Persian Gulf

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Retrospectively fitting Emad-style guided warhead on existing stockpiles on IRBM/MRBMs:

For Iran's BMs in general, the Emad guided warhead is likely to be retrospectively fitted onto Shahab-3 generation of BMs (this has already been seen in the Qiam-2 SRBM)
Building on this, I will make a separate post about Qiam and its evolution tomorrow, but I found some good quality footage of this happening already. The implications of this are quite significant - it means Iran can retrospectively fit its stockpile of older generation BMs (such as Gadr, Qiam, Shahab-2/3 etc) with the guided Emad warhead (as seen on the Khorramshahr-2), bringing the CEP of thousands of MRBMs from >1000m to <50m CEP.

Firstly, on the Ghadr MRBM:

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Secondly, on the 2nd generation Qiam (Qiam-2 - which was used against Daesh targets in Syria in October 2018):

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Video:

 

Eagle1

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IRGC Fortifies Tehran With Surface-to-Air Missiles
Sunday, 2 June, 2019

Iranian Shahab 2 missile bearing crest of IRGC 370. REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl)

London - Asharq Al-Awsat

Tehran's Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Mohammad Reza Yazdi uncovered on Saturday that Iran would deploy on Monday its HAWK anti-aircraft defense system to protect its airspace from any potential attacks during a ceremony on June 4 in the Iranian capital to mourn the father of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini.

“The security agencies will deploy surface-to-air missiles, and anti-aircraft defense system HAWK missiles near the Khomeini tomb to counter threats including drones. We will be ready to deal with any possible security threats,” said Yazdi.

The IRGC commander denied that security forces had found any evidence showing the presence of real threats. He stated that there were no reports of any activity of small flying objects, but added, "We are planning to show our capability."

Yazdi warned that "those who might be planning to disrupt order and security in this year's gathering on June 13 - 15 should not to waste their time, as security forces will confront them seriously."

Iranians will descend on Khomeini’s Mausoleum in southern Tehran to remember the leader of the 1970 Islamic Revolution, Khomeini, who died on June 3, 1989. Iran’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei is expected to speak at the event.

Two years ago, ISIS members launched raids on the Khomeini Mausoleum and the Iranian parliament, killing 17 and wounding more than 50.

Lately, tensions have risen between Tehran and Washington after the latter sent additional military forces to the Middle East against Iranian threats to US troops and interests in the region.

Last Thursday, Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan confirmed that the Pentagon was considering sending additional US troops to the Middle East as one of the ways to bolster protection for American forces there.

On Saturday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani suggested Iran might be willing to hold talks if the US showed respect, but said Tehran would not be pressured into negotiations.

Fars news agency quoted Rouhani as saying: “We are for logic and talks if (the other side) sits respectfully at the negotiating table and follows international regulations, not if it issues an order to negotiate.”

Rouhani said that the “same enemy which declared its aim last year to destroy the Islamic Republic of Iran today explicitly states that it does not want to do anything to (our) system.”

The President concluded, “If we remain hopeful in the war with America, we will win.”

 

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