What do we know about the “Beaver”, this strange Ukrainian drone that attacked Moscow?

An unprecedented combat drone model was seen in the skies of Moscow on May 30. Ukraine would have tried to attack the Russian capital with the “Beaver”, the Castor in French, a kamikaze device.

Moscow was treated to the largest Ukrainian drone attack on May 30 since the Kremlin decided to invade Ukraine. 16 devices were detected, but the total number is not yet defined. All were destroyed, three of them left minor damage against civilian buildings.

Among the devices that have targeted Moscow today, a strange model intrigues specialists. With its long “nose”, the drone gives the impression of flying backwards. We cannot determine the model 100%, but everything suggests that it is a “Beaver”, or “Castor” in French. Two videos make it possible to observe more precisely this new remote-controlled device.

The Beaver drone, a new suicide device

This drone, manufactured by Ukroboronprom, a manufacturer’s association for the Ukrainian army, is still unpublished in the sky of Moscow. The general public was able to discover it thanks to the Ukrainian influencer Ihor Lachen. The blogger described it as a “suicide drone” in a Telegram post published in December 2022.

The medium-sized device would be about three meters long and would contain an explosive charge to detonate against a given target. Ihor Lachen indicated at the time five devices were produced for around 450,000 euros.

Each number corresponds to a part of the drone. The 1 represents the nose with two side fins, the 2 for the large wings, and the 3 for the tail. // Source: Ihor Lachen / Twitter / OSINT Defender

Regarding its range, the “Beaver” should exceed 500 km in distance, if it is sent from the Ukrainian border to Moscow. Its explosive charge as well as its intelligence capabilities are not yet determined.

The device has a so-called “duck” shape: the surface is much larger than at the front, the propulsion propeller being at the rear. Many flying devices have taken this look and manufacturers still produce such as the Chengdu J-20, a Chinese stealth fighter plane. This fuselage would prevent the stall – a loss of speed – of the flying machine. The name could potentially be given in connection with a humorous video of a Ukrainian soldier trying to pull a beaver out of a trench on the front.

The May 30 attack can be a test of comparison with other Ukrainian models, notably the UJ-22, which has already been used to attack Moscow. Ukraine has developed a new reconnaissance aircraft, the SHARK UAV, as well as naval models used to strike Russian ships.

Many tourist drones have also been modified to be deployed in close combat zones. The Ukrainian army does not hesitate to produce them quickly and test them in the field to judge their effectiveness. If the “Beaver” was able to reach Moscow on May 30, it will potentially be used for other missions, closer to the border, such as the destruction of refineries for example.

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