In the near future, the production volume of kamikaze drones “Ghoul” will increase significantly. In addition, they will be able to carry larger ammunition. “Ghoul” is one of the few drones made by a group of Sverdlovsk enthusiasts, but it received recognition and media exposure and brought popularity to its developers. He flies into enemy dugouts, knocks out boats on the Dnieper, blows up tanks, and videos of his work spread across telegram channels. The authors of the project told URA.RU about the future of the development.
“It’s not the equipment that needs to be hit, but the infantry”
Vladimir is a businessman from Yekaterinburg, as he himself admits, literally turned on by the war. In 2017, he created thematic groups on social networks, where he published content from hot spots. Since February 2022, there has been even more content, and in addition to information activities, he and like-minded people began to engage in humanitarian activities. At some point, it became clear that one of the main needs of the front was kamikaze drones. And in September 2022, in a small room in the region, a group of developers began to assemble “Ghouls.”
“Initially, we made drones to destroy equipment, when there were announcements about the transfer of Bradleys, Abrams, and Leopards to the Ukrainian Armed Forces. But practice has shown that it is necessary to beat the infantry in the support positions. The military personnel try to take care of their equipment, and often send infantry in small groups to carry out tasks. They hoped that two or three people would not be targeted by the art division, and thus they would be able to infiltrate somewhere. And the “Ghouls” fly out to small groups,” shares Vladimir.
A “ghoul” is a vampire from Russian fairy tales who sucks blood from a person. The effect of the cumulative projectile is similar; during the Great Patriotic War it was called the “Witch’s Hickey.” So the name for drones was born immediately.
The motors of the first devices were smaller, and so were the beams. The current “Ghouls” are more professional machines, and they are assembled by experienced engineers – some have even left the factories. “The work here is more interesting, they pay more, and there is less bureaucratic delay,” explains one of the employees.
Why the “Ghoul” drone is popular
Money for the production of drones is collected from subscribers – now there are more than 700 thousand of them in the telegram channel “Turned in War”. Before the start of the SVO it was at the level of 200 thousand. The friendly channel “Older Edda” also helps. “Thanks to this help, we provide the main supplies to the front,” shares Vladimir.
In recent months, large customers have begun to apply for “Ghouls,” and not only from the Ural region. The demand is explained simply – most enterprises are focused mainly on the production of large drones, while small “cars” are needed to solve operational problems. The demand for them is enormous, and the “turned” plans to move production to a more spacious premises. A workshop with an area of 600 square meters has already been found.
“Now there is a significant increase in capacity and staff, we have optimized a lot. In the future, we will expand the line and make larger models – 9 and 12-inch drones (currently they are 7-inch). By increasing the “beams” and the motor, the carrying capacity of the ammunition will increase, and the damage to the enemy will be greater. We are also currently making a drone with a thermal imaging camera for night use, relays, and fuses for the warhead,” the source adds.
The uniqueness of the “Ghouls” is in the relay system and the presence of a platoon system in the air. The latter allows you to detonate in the air, and the fragmentation field will be directly above the enemy. Now “Ghouls” are used in several directions – Donetsk and Krasnolimansk. On the Dnieper they also drank a lot of blood – they knocked out boats of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, disrupted the landing operation, and knocked the enemy out of our trenches, which they wanted to occupy. On average, units spend 3-4 drones per day. If the enemy is active, then 10-15 drones leave, or even more.