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Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder

Loitering Munition UAV / Drone

Ukraine | 2022

"The ST-35 Silent Thunder loitering munition drone is another in a long line of Ukrainian-developed Unmanned Air Systems."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Loitering Munition UAV / Drone.
1 x Electric motor driving 6 x Twin-bladed lift-propellers for VTOL take-off and 1 x Twin-bladed propeller unit at the rear of the fuselage for horizontal flight (pusher arrangement).
93 mph
150 kph | 81 kts
Max Speed
3,937 ft
1,200 m | 0 miles
Service Ceiling
19 miles
30 km | 16 nm
Operational Range
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Loitering Munition UAV / Drone.
7 lb
(3 kg)
Empty Weight
9 lb
(4 kg)
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder Loitering Munition UAV / Drone .
1 x 7.7lb (3.5 kg) warhead. Variable types supported including high explosive, thermobaric, incendiary, and cumulative.
Notable series variants as part of the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder family line.
ST-35 "Silent Thunder" - Base Series Designation.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 04/30/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

The growing field of "loitering munitions" - kamikaze-like, disposable unmanned aircraft - has led to an abundance of modern-day options for even the most discerning military buyer. The ST-35 "Silent Thunder" is just one solution in an increasingly crowded field and developed by the engineers of Ukraine-based Athlon-Avia as a reliable, cost-effective over-battlefield product. The system has been actively used in the country's War in Donbas in the east against Russian elements following the invasion of the country in February of 2022.

The ST-35's onboard systems can provide ground operators with real-time information on precise enemy positions and movements. The loitering aspect of this aircraft allows it to remain airborne for extended periods of time searching for, and tracking, unsuspecting targets of opportunity below - even those protected by woods, buildings, light armoring, and out of line-of-sight from traditional weapon solutions. The precise capabilities of loitering munitions enable it to engage targets in deep urban environments or wide-open spaces with equal lethality.

The general shape of the aircraft is centered on a tube-like body form. Wing mainplanes are arranged in an "X" pattern along the midway point and this is repeated through smaller-area planes at the tail. Drive power is electric and consists of six twin-bladed lift-units positioned about a detachable "collar".

The Silent Thunder has a take-off weight of 9.5 kg, installs a warhead of 3.5 kg (FAE, HEAT, and HEF types), and can fly out to a radius of 30 km while operating at altitudes of up to 1,200 meters and cruising at speeds of 140 kmh. The vehicle is launched vertically (VTOL) utilizing its lift-prop network. It is designed to be highly-transportable by ground forces and is carried in its own hard case. Some assembly / preparation is required prior to launching the unit as the fuselage arrives in two pieces and all planes have to be attached.

Once airborne, the loitering munition section of the system is released from its lift-rotor collar and is then relatively quietly driven to the target by operator (via camera) and its pusher propeller unit before the inevitable strike occurs. The system targets through an automatic TV/IR channel and is marketed with an overall 95% success-rate-on-target. Targets include all manner of ground-based positions and installations though typically high-value communications, storage, and general infrastructure has been singled out by Ukrainian forces.

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 200 Units

Contractor(s): Athlon-Avia LLC - Ukraine
National flag of Ukraine

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Image of the Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder
Image from official Athlon-Avia marketing materials.

Going Further...
The Athlon-Avia ST-35 Silent Thunder Loitering Munition UAV / Drone appears in the following collections:
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