The kamikaze drone “Scalpel” has been put into mass production, the Vostok design bureau told TASS.

“Scalpel” will be produced in a very large series; by the end of 2024 we will begin production of thousands of copies of the product.

The exact data is not disclosed; there are thousands of products,” the company noted.

The developers recalled that in the zone of special military operation “Scalpel” has been used since 2023.

During this time, changes were made to its design.

“We have modernized the catapult from which the platform is launched.

It has become more compact, easier to use, and deploys three times faster.

We save the lives of soldiers.

“Scalpel” also received a new connection.

We regularly improve and adapt to new realities,” explained the design bureau.

The authors of the project note that in the future the Scalpel will be supplemented by a reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicle - two drones will work in tandem.

"The enemy must be afraid"

Let us remind you that the Vostok Design Bureau was founded by representatives of the Vostok battalion (now the 114th Separate Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade), which has been fighting in the Donbass since 2014.

“Scalpel” is created on a proactive basis.

As noted on the KB website, the new drone is a “multi-purpose disposable platform.”

This device is capable of “staying in the air in the target area for a long time in standby mode and quickly attacking it after receiving the appropriate command from the operator or performing tasks provided for by the underlying algorithm,” according to the developer’s materials.

The Scalpel's flight range is 40 km, payload weight is 5 kg, take-off weight is 10.5 kg, and cruising speed is 120 km/h.

  • UAV "Scalpel"

  • © KB "Vostok"

The developers are positioning the Scalpel as a cheaper analogue of the already famous kamikaze drone Lancet from ZALA (part of the Kalashnikov concern).

The devices have a similar design and operating principle.

“This product (“Scalpel.” -


) is an analogue of the Lancet.

But now and then it will be inferior to the Lancet in some technical parameters - this is a necessary price for greater availability,” noted the Telegram channel of the Vostok battalion.

At the same time, the designers emphasize that they do not intend to compete with ZALA products.

Their main task is to create cheap, but long-range and effective loitering ammunition.

“We do not set ourselves the task of creating competition - we want to fill the front with the necessary means of destruction,” the bureau noted.

According to the commander of the Vostok brigade, Alexander Khodakovsky, when determining the appearance of the future drone, the developers had to create a universal long-range unmanned vehicle for counter-battery combat at a significant distance from the front line.

“The most important thing is that we needed mass production of cheap, consumer-grade drones that would satisfy us in terms of efficiency,” he said in an interview with Komsomolskaya Pravda.

In his opinion, the emergence of a massive and cheap kamikaze drone will make it possible, in particular, to overload the air defense systems of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

“What do we want to achieve?

Knocking out enemy artillery installations.

The second is a decrease in the accuracy of his artillery fire.

The third effect (it will be achieved in large numbers) is overloading the enemy’s air defense.

Fourth, the enemy must be afraid of the Scalpel,” Khodakovsky said.

He also said that one “Scalpel” costs about 200 thousand rubles.

The developers will try to keep the price at this level in the future, the brigade commander added.

“We will not allow the price of a product in mass production to increase.

Once “Scalpel” rises in price at least twice, that’s it, the meaning is lost.

If anyone from our chain of developers wants to make money on Scalpel during the SVO, I will immediately sever the relationship,” Khodakovsky emphasized.

"Cause significant damage"

It is worth noting that “Lancet”, an analogue of which is “Scalpel”, currently shows high effectiveness during SVO.

Information about its successful use is regularly published by the Russian military.

Thus, on February 2, the Lancet hit the Ukrainian T-64BV tank, and on February 4, the AN/TPQ-36 counter-battery radar.

Later, units of unmanned aircraft of the Airborne Forces from the Dnepr group of troops used these UAVs to destroy three field guns and a mortar of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the Kherson region.

  • UAV "Lancet"


  • © Bulkin Sergey/

The effectiveness of the Lancets is also recognized abroad.

In particular, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said on February 14 that these drones “made a revolution” during the conflict in Ukraine.

The politician also said that Belgrade is developing a similar device, which is planned to be adopted by the Serbian armed forces in 2025.

In turn, analysts believe that the Scalpel will find its niche among the troops and will be used simultaneously with the Lancet.

“Both devices will be used in the North-West zone.

However, it is unlikely that any of these drones will be assigned a special role.

In war there is no time to select targets separately for the Lancet or the Scalpel.

Everything will depend on the situation and on what weapon will be at hand at that particular moment,” military observer, retired Colonel Viktor Litovkin said in a conversation with RT.

At the same time, he noted that the payload mass of 5 kg will allow the Scalpel to hit a fairly wide range of targets.

“This is enough to destroy a tank, armored personnel carrier, infantry fighting vehicle, radar installation and other similar objects.

You can also blow up, for example, a dugout of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

This is a heavy enough weight to cause significant damage to the enemy,” Litovkin said.

For his part, the head of the International Training Center for Unmanned Aviation, Maxim Kondratyev, believes that it is premature to assess the capabilities of the Scalpel; it is necessary to wait for the results of its use in the army.

“When new equipment appears, a pilot batch is produced... any technical solution has a number of “childhood diseases” that need to be identified at the initial stages of operation.

This is the path from prototype to production model.

Even when there is already a production model, it is still constantly being improved,” the specialist explained in a conversation with RT.

At the same time, analysts positively assess the very fact that new models of Russian UAVs are appearing on the market, which allows engineers to find the most optimal technical solutions.

“Competition is good for strengthening the defense capability of the state and for ensuring technological superiority in the international market.

Any product must be so well designed and implemented that it is in demand not only within the country, but also abroad.

And Russia needs to strive for this,” Kondratiev concluded.