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Iran’s Battle-Proven 3rd Khordad Air Defense System ‘On Alert’ for American Drones

Operated by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran, the medium-range "3rd Khordad" air defense system is the only one known to have successfully shot down a U.S. Air Force RQ-4 Global Hawk BAMS-D drone over the Strait of Hormuz on June 20, 2019.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — Iran’s battle-proven “3rd Khordad” or “Sevvom Khordad” air defense system is a medium-range system that has proven its effectiveness and achieved success in real-world operational scenarios.

Operated by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran, the medium-range “3rd Khordad” air defense system is the only one known to have successfully shot down a U.S. Air Force RQ-4 Global Hawk BAMS-D drone over the Strait of Hormuz on June 20, 2019.

For this reason, Iran’s “3rd Khordad” air defense system is highly regarded by the international community.

The American RQ-4 Global Hawk is a high-altitude, long-endurance (HALE) drone, designed for extended and long-distance operations.

Senior Iranian military officials claim that the high-tech American drone was shot down after it entered Iranian airspace, while senior Washington officials assert that the Global Hawk drone was in international airspace at the time it was downed.

Khordad
“3rd Khordad”

 

The American Global Hawk was brought down by a missile launched from Iran’s “3rd Khordad” air defense system while the drone was over the Garuk area in Hormozgan Province.

Although the incident involving the shooting down of the American Global Hawk drone occurred approximately five years ago, it remains a source of pride for the Iranian military.

This event is particularly celebrated as a triumph of Iran’s indigenous air defense system over a piece of advanced U.S. weaponry.

During periods of heightened tension between Iran and the United States in the Middle East, Iran’s “3rd Khordad” air defense system has been at the forefront, actively monitoring for any foreign objects, particularly U.S. military assets, to prevent them from entering Iranian airspace.

At the recent DSA & NATSEC 2024 defense and security exhibition in Kuala Lumpur, the Iranian delegation showcased a model of the “3rd Khordad” system, which resembles Russia’s “BUK” air defense system in design.

Global Hawk
“RQ-4 Global Hawk Unmanned Aircraft Used by the United States Air Force”
Iran
A model of 3rd Khordad air defence system during DSA & NATSEC 2024 exhibition in Kuala Lumpur recently.

 

According to Brigadier Ali Reza Balali, advisor to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, interviewed by FARS news agency, the “3rd Khordad” is a tactical, mobile platform designed to counter U.S. forces in the region.

This domestically developed medium-range system consists of a mobile vehicle that houses three Taer-2 guided missiles and an AESA X-Band Active Phase Array radar capable of detecting 100 targets, engaging four, and launching two missiles simultaneously.

A typical battalion of the “3rd Khordad” system includes four Transporter Erector Launchers and Radars (TELAR), eight Transport Erector Launchers (TEL), and a Bashir S-band Phased Array Surveillance Radar with a range of 350 km.

Recent reports indicate that the “3rd Khordad” has now been equipped with a new variant of missile, the Taer-3 air defense missile, capable of striking aerial targets up to 200 km away. — DSA

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