The ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict has entered its sixth month. It has been reported that Ukraine is in dire need of defensive support to counter Russian attacks. Since the conflict between the two countries started, the U.S. and U.K. have been continuously lending military support to Ukraine. The provision of Switchblade drones by the U.S. is the most recent example of the military aid that Ukraine received. Having no signs of the war ending, the U.S. government announced another military aid facility on Wednesday worth $3 billion, as reported by Defense News.
However, this military aid package consists of the most sophisticated technology that Ukraine is expected to utilize against Russia. The system, known as Vehicle-Agnostic Modular Palletized ISR Rocket Equipment (VAMPIRE), has the capability to be perfectly administered on a pickup truck and can act as a portable rocket launcher. The stealthy weapon has been manufactured by Melbourne, Florida.-based L3 Harris and is a four-barrel launcher with the inclusion of a sensor ball. The most interesting thing to note is that the whole system requires only two men to set it up on a pickup truck in just a couple of hours and just one man to operate it.
The person who is going to operate this VAMPIRE system can easily launch it to lock the targets both on the ground and in the air. The website of the L3 Harris describes the system as, “Everything needed to operate the weapon is available on the pallet, which negates the need for a 24-volt alternator on the vehicle. Therefore, the weapon can be mounted even on non-tactical vehicles (NTV).” Similarly, advanced precision kills weapons systems (APKWS) and other laser-guided munitions can be launched easily by the VAMPIRE system.
Ukraine needs continuous military support as Russia is getting stronger day by day. Ukrainian soldiers have also experimented with using motorcycle sidecars for missile launchers in the last month, although there were some doubts about the efficacy of the system. On the other hand, defense through electronic countermeasures is something that Ukraine cannot afford at the moment, so the most convenient and sustainable thing through which it can defend itself is to deploy counter-drone measures. This incredible VAMPIRE system is based on the same framework and has four barrels that can hit multiple targets at a time without the need to further reload the system.
Hence, the system has the potential to lend long-term support to Ukraine. However, the delivery of the system is expected in the coming nine months as the U.S. government has not yet given the formal order, including the number of units to be delivered. This ammunition package by the U.S. is considered the biggest military aid to Ukraine as it also includes “Puma drones, artillery, and a host of other ammunition and air defense systems.”