Iran Cruise Missiles and Ballistic Missiles

Iran has developed some cruise missiles that are based upon the Soviet era KH-55 cruise missile.

Russia and the United States both have GPS jamming and spoofing capabilities.

Russia would not actually fight with Iran but will provide various military systems.

CEP is used to measure missile accuracy. CEP (Circular Error Probable) is defined as the radius of the circle in which 50% of the fired missiles land. The smaller it is, the better the accuracy of the missile.

The latest version of China’s DF-21 has a CEP about 40 meters which allow accurate targeting of small complexes or large buildings. The CEP of the American made Hellfire is as low as 4 meters and enabling precision strikes on small buildings or even tanks.

If you were trying to hit a 100 meter by 100-meter complex. Forty missiles with a CEP of 150 meters would have a 90 % chance at hitting the complex. Three DF-21 missiles would have achieved the same result. The US missiles would in general do not miss such a large target.

The SS-1 “Scud A” ballistic missile is based upon the Nazi V-2 rocket which was used to attack London during the Second World War.

The R-11M ‘Scud A’ entered into service in 1955. The ‘Scud A’ was 10.3 m long and had a diameter of 0.88 m. The missile had a range of 190 km and was accurate to about three km CEP (about 2 miles).

The R-17 ‘Scud B’ was an upgrade over the ‘Scud A’ that became operational in 1962. The SCUD B has a range of 300 km with accuracy of 450 meters CEP.

Over 600 ‘Scud B’ and North Korean ‘Scud B’ variants were fired by Iran and Iraq between 1980 and 1988. Over 2,000 ‘Scud B,’ and possibly a small number of ‘Scud C’ missiles, are thought to have been used in Afghanistan.

In 2010, Iran developed an improved version of the Shahab-2 called the “Qiam-1,” with an 800 km range, better accuracy, and a separating re-entry vehicle.

The Shahab-3 is a medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) developed by Iran and based on the North Korean Nodong. The Shabab-3 has an accuracy of 140 meters CEP, the Shahab-3 missile is primarily effective against large, soft targets (like cities).

US Air Force National Air and Space Intelligence Center estimates that as of June 2017 fewer than 50 Shabab-3 launchers were operationally deployed.

Iran has the largest ballistic missile force for Middle Eastern countries. Iran has deployed to military units about 100 road-mobile launchers for SRBMs perhaps half as many road-mobile launchers for MRBMs, and hundreds of associated missiles (perhaps over 1000).

The missiles have unitary high-explosive and/or submunition warheads payloads ranging in size from 250 to 1800 kg.

The Shahab-3B has a fast fueling capability and might be accurate to a CEP of 30-50 meters. In any conflict with between Iran and the USA or Israel, Iran would need to move and hide missiles and would need to rapidly shoot them before they were destroyed by US planes and missiles.

19 thoughts on “Iran Cruise Missiles and Ballistic Missiles”

  1. I wouldn’t call iranian millitary capabillities pathetic, especially the assymmetric warfare in proxy wars, houthis on flipflops and “locally produced (read iranian) ballistic missiles are giving the saudis a hard time,

    but i would agree that meeting the u.s war machine head 2 head they would likely lose (but they have no intention of doing so)

    also the us and iran know that sticking around in a post war iran is most likely another expensive and perputual (in terms of money and lost human limbs due to roadside bombs) hurt locker like afghanistan and iraq.

    But the mullahs want to stick around so all they want is ONE nuclear tipped ballistic missile capable of reaching israeli soil just to ensure by mere capabillity that the u.s doesn’t topple their regime.

  2. Dont need missiles to control the Gulf. CEP of 30-50 meters possible with modern artillery, 50 lb of HE in an AP shell will sink or deter ships. Hard to defend. Shoot & scoot is the method, Iran has lots of rough territory perfect for s&s. Cheaper than missiles.

  3. They made a point that they can hit you anytime and anywhere in the middle east and there is jack crap you can do about it except scurry like rats to hide in your bunkers! LOL!

    How embarrassing it must be for you to face reality where much vaunted SAM systems could not shoot down a single Iranian missile. MEGA LOL!

  4. I did, looks like they killed a few thousand dollars worth of sheet metal.

    Except that 737. It was worth a little bit.

  5. Pinpoint accuracy if their target was dirt on the Earth’s surface you mean.

    Now, their SAMs were at least able to shoot down a Ukrainian 737 just after take-off. That counts as a hit! Such competence!

  6. I think it was said they used drones on that refinery along with some “honorable men in the Kingdom”. So, different tools & circumstances.

  7. I wonder if US turned off civilian non military GPS satellites over Iran and Iraq… seems like a place that shouldn’t have GPS for aiming missles…

  8. Its interesting that this attack seems to have been a dismal failure of inaccuracy, and yet the Saudi oil refinery that was hit a few months back was hit in exactly the right place to hurt most. So whats going on? The Houthi militia, if it was them, are more accurate than the Iranian military? Really?

  9. Very interesting. From what I’ve read the Iranians used modified scud b variants to hit the US bases with pinpoint accuracy. They didn’t use any of their newer missiles.

    What is even more surprising is the US was completely incapable off intercepting a single missile. But then again the US SAMs failed to intercept missiles fired by a bunch of 3rd world rebels so I guess this is to be expected.

  10. They probably are refusing to turn over the data recorders because of the experience with the MH17 “black boxes”. They are likely looking for someone not on the US payroll like Boeing, perhaps the Russians or Chinese.

  11. They missed on purpose so they had a out, If they had hit us they would have been destroyed within a month. Not just because of the US. They threatened (like some weird bully who is found out when a kid fights back) to basically go to war with the entire middle east. Then in the end realized they had painted themselves into a corner.

    So two hours before they fired the rockets they warned the Iraqi’s who warned everyone else. Most of the rockets fell on dirt and sand.

    So they get to sell a line of BS to appear strong and defiant so their populace doesn’t turn on them (killing hundreds in the streets and beating and raping thousands in the prisons tends to do make fear your only real power) and the US gets to not get into ANOTHER war. Maybe they will amp down after this and stop hijacking ships, kidnapping people, and generally being the main problem in the entire ME.

  12. “Whose bright idea was it to take off in a airplane in the middle of people firing missiles?”

    If you know an attack is coming you scramble everything that can fly lest it get hit on the ground. The thinking being if it is not on base an base gets hit it survives. This fails if you can’t get it off base fast enough. They did the right thing just not fast enough for it to matter.

  13. I think you may well be right. They had to show at home that they “retaliated” but they did not want to escalate things since they must now realise that you can not provoke the US – Trump too much at the moment and an escalation of hostilities would hurt them more.
    There is widespread unhappiness in Iran with the Ayatollahs anyway.

  14. It also appear that they deliberately missed things with most of them. Satellite imagery shows they did hit buildings on the airfield. And they called ahead to warn folks. You’re refusing to see that their equipment far outstrips Iraqs, and they appear to have a LOT more of it. News reports have came out indicating that it seems clear they aimed for places where us personnel were not present. If you’ve seen the video of the missiles hitting, they were pretty decent sized explosions. And we managed to intercept ZERO of them.

    And they probably refuse to handover the black box because they shot it down, time will tell for sure. Whose bright idea was it to take off in a airplane in the middle of people firing missiles?

  15. By their performance at the Al Assad airbase, they have demonstrated that they are exceedingly efficient at striking dirt and missing anything of value with the exception that they seem to excel at shooting down Ukrainian 737s. I wonder why they refuse to hand over the black box? Pure garbage equipment.

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