Video footage shows the Russian Kh-101 cruise missile launching chaff and flare decoys.

The first-ever glimpse of a Russian Kh-101 Air-launched cruise missile that releases decoy flares in flight has been shown in a recent viral video.

The existence of the Kh-101 was first brought to light after images of a virtually intact example of one of these missiles with a countermeasures delivery system installed emerged publicly. Following this, a video showing the Kh-101 deploying countermeasures went viral on social media. Sources suggest that Russian forces have been using Kh-101s in Ukraine since at least January this year.

The new video clip featured Russia’s attacks on Ukraine, which included the launch of at least 90 Kh-101, Kh-55, and Kh-555 air-launched cruise missiles. This has sparked concerns and debates over Russia’s missile warfare tactics and its implications for the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

The subsonic Kh-101 is a substantially revised derivative of the Kh-55/Kh-555 family with some stealth features and other improvements, including the ability to release decoy flares while in flight. The video reveals the Kh-101 deploying countermeasures and the distinctive sound of the countermeasures being fired.

Reports suggest that Russia had begun deploying a new Kh-101 subvariant equipped with countermeasures, called Izdeliye 504AP (Object 504AP). This subvariant is said to come with countermeasures intended to “block” enemy surface-to-air missiles. The presence of these countermeasures has raised concerns about Russia’s intentions and the escalation of the conflict in Ukraine.

As seen in the video, the Kh-101 releases a mixture of flares and chaff, creating confusion for the radar systems and making it difficult for the enemy to track the missile’s trajectory. The missiles are likely pre-programmed to fire countermeasures when they reach particular waypoints, such as in the terminal phase closest to the target or where threat systems are believed to be along their route.

The deployment of countermeasures by Russia also raises questions about Ukraine’s air and missile defense capabilities. Ukrainian forces have noted some success in mitigating Russian missile and drone attacks, but the use of countermeasure-equipped Kh-101s points to concerns about Ukraine’s ability to defend against advanced missile systems.

In response to Russia’s latest missile and drone attacks, the UK has announced plans to improve Ukraine’s air defenses by sending hundreds of British-made air defense missiles to the country. This move reflects the growing concern among Western nations about the conflict in Ukraine and the need to support the country’s defense capabilities.

In conclusion, it is likely that we will see more examples of Kh-101 equipped with countermeasures in the future, as Russia seeks to ensure that their cruise missiles can hit their targets. The ongoing conflict in Ukraine has underscored the importance of advanced missile defense systems, and the deployment of countermeasures by Russia has raised the stakes in the battle for air superiority.

The video showing the Kh-101 deploying countermeasures has provided valuable insights into Russia’s missile warfare tactics and the evolving nature of modern missile systems. The use of decoy flares and chaff as countermeasures presents new challenges for defense systems in Ukraine and other conflict zones, and further developments in missile technology are likely to impact the future of warfare around the world.