FrankenSAM is the phrase that has been coined to describe how Ukraine is supplementing its air defense capabilities by combining elements of its older Soviet-era equipment with Western supplied missiles.

Ukraine’s Minister of Strategic Industries, Oleksandr Kamyshin, announced during a briefing in Davos that Ukrainian troops had successfully used a domestic air defense system to destroy a Shahed attack unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at a distance of 9 kilometers in the early hours of today, Jan. 17.

“One of the systems was successfully used for the first time last night. We shot down the ‘Shahed’ 9 kilometers away, marking the inaugural use of such a system,” he noted.

The minister explained that the full development of Ukraine's own air defense system would likely take years. In the meantime, Ukraine has worked with its partners to develop air defense systems that combine Soviet-era components, such as launchers and radars with Western missiles.

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Kamyshin added that Ukraine has already established five complexes under the FrankenSAM concept, saying “I am very glad that we have already deployed all these systems on the battlefield.”

The FrankenSAM project, which is more correctly a hybrid air defense system, based on three possible options:

  • Soviet Buk missile launcher and radar firing American RIM-7 Sea Sparrow missiles;
  • AIM-9M air-to-air missiles in combination with Soviet air defense radar systems;
  • Using Ukrainian target acquisition and guidance radars to support Patriot

Last October, the Pentagon announced successful tests of this system.

Towards the end of 2023, Kamyshin mentioned that Ukraine was actively working on the development of its own air defense systems, including the FrankenSAM hybrid air defense system.

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“The latest air raid alert in Kyiv was a UAV threat. Over the past two weeks, this is at least the fifth actual attempt by the enemy to attack the capital using drones,” says Kyiv military official.

According to the minister, FrankenSAM is a product of Ukraine's productive collaboration with American partners.

“We took our Soviet systems, integrated them with our Western partners, along with Western missiles and launchers, and achieved a new hybrid air defense system at the finish line,” he said.

Kamyshin emphasized that the development of a totally new domestic air defense system could take approximately five years.

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“We are not waiting five years. We are developing our systems: large, complex, expensive, and time-consuming,” he added.

“In parallel, we are developing what we call a hybrid air defense system. These are quick solutions that have already yielded results this winter,” he concluded.

FrankenSAM is the phrase that has been coined to describe how Ukraine is supplementing its air defense capabilities by combining elements of its older Soviet-era equipment with Western supplied missiles.

Ukraine’s Minister of Strategic Industries, Oleksandr Kamyshin, announced during a briefing in Davos that Ukrainian troops had successfully used a domestic air defense system to destroy a Shahed attack unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at a distance of 9 kilometers in the early hours of today, Jan. 17.

“One of the systems was successfully used for the first time last night. We shot down the ‘Shahed’ 9 kilometers away, marking the inaugural use of such a system,” he noted.

The minister explained that the full development of Ukraine's own air defense system would likely take years. In the meantime, Ukraine has worked with its partners to develop air defense systems that combine Soviet-era components, such as launchers and radars with Western missiles.

Advertisement

Kamyshin added that Ukraine has already established five complexes under the FrankenSAM concept, saying “I am very glad that we have already deployed all these systems on the battlefield.”

The FrankenSAM project, which is more correctly a hybrid air defense system, based on three possible options:

  • Soviet Buk missile launcher and radar firing American RIM-7 Sea Sparrow missiles;
  • AIM-9M air-to-air missiles in combination with Soviet air defense radar systems;
  • Using Ukrainian target acquisition and guidance radars to support Patriot

Last October, the Pentagon announced successful tests of this system.

Towards the end of 2023, Kamyshin mentioned that Ukraine was actively working on the development of its own air defense systems, including the FrankenSAM hybrid air defense system.

According to the minister, FrankenSAM is a product of Ukraine's productive collaboration with American partners.

“We took our Soviet systems, integrated them with our Western partners, along with Western missiles and launchers, and achieved a new hybrid air defense system at the finish line,” he said.

Kamyshin emphasized that the development of a totally new domestic air defense system could take approximately five years.

“We are not waiting five years. We are developing our systems: large, complex, expensive, and time-consuming,” he added.

“In parallel, we are developing what we call a hybrid air defense system. These are quick solutions that have already yielded results this winter,” he concluded.

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