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S-13 rocket launcher for 5 rockets (right) beside 2 S-8 rocket launchers mounted under a Sukhoi Su-25 during Russian military intervention in the Syrian Civil War 2015

The S-13 is a 122 mm calibre unguided rocket weapon developed by the Soviet Air Force for use by military aircraft. It remains in service with the Russian Aerospace Forces and some other countries.


The S-13 rocket was developed in the 1970s to meet requirements for a penetrating weapon capable of cratering runways and penetrating hardened aircraft shelters, bunkers and pillboxes, to fill a gap between 80 mm and 240 mm rockets and fulfill a role similar to the 127 mm Zuni rocket. The S-13 is conventional in layout, with a solid rocket motor and folding tail fins that provide stability after launch.

The first trials were in 1973, but it was introduced only in 1983. S-13 rockets are shot from 5-tube launchers B-13L, that can be carried by most of Soviet and Russian attack and new fighter aircraft, like Sukhoi Su-17/20/22, Sukhoi Su-24, Sukhoi Su-25, Sukhoi Su-27, MiG-23BN, MiG-27, MiG-29. B-13L1 launcher is used by helicopters such as Mil Mi-24, Mil Mi-28, Kamov Ka-29TB, Kamov Ka-50 and Kamov Ka-52. S-13 rocket system has been accepted for operation on Sukhoi Su-30MK2, Sukhoi Su-24M, Sukhoi Su-25, Sukhoi Su-35, Yakovlev Yak-130, MiG-29BM, Mil Mi-28N.[1]

Launcher specifications

Designation Length Diameter Unloaded weight Number of rockets Notes
B-13L 3.56 m 0.410 m 160 kg 5 0.15 seconds firing interval
B-13L1 3.06 m 0.410 m 140 kg 5 0.15 seconds firing interval

Rocket specifications

Designation Type Length overall Launch weight Warhead weight Range Notes
S-13 Penetration 2.54 m 57 kg 21 kg
(1.82 kg of explosive)
1.1 – 3 km Penetrates 3 m of earth and 1 m of reinforced concrete. On runways it produces a demolition area of 20 m2. Velocity 650 m/s.
S-13B Penetration 2.63 m 60 kg 23 kg
(1.92 kg of explosive)
n/a Penetrates 3 m of earth and 1 m of concrete. Introduced in 2021.[2]
S-13T[3] Tandem HEAT 2.99 m 75 kg 21 kg and 16.3 kg (1.8 kg and 2.7 kg of explosives) 1.1 – 4 km Combined penetration of 6 m of earth and 1 m of reinforced concrete. Velocity 500 m/s
S-13OF[4] APAM/FRAG 2.97 m 69 kg 33 kg
(7 kg of explosive)
1.6 – 3 km Produces 450 splinters between 23 and 35 g, capable of penetrating lightly armoured vehicles such as APCs and IFVs. Velocity 530 m/s. Introduced in 1993.
S-13D FAE 3.12 m 68 kg 32 kg
(14.2 kg of fuel)
1.6 – 3 km 35 – 40 kg TNT equivalent. Velocity 530 m/s. Introduced in 1995.
S-13DF[5] FAE 3.12 m 68 kg 32 kg
(14.6 kg of fuel)
0.5 – 6 km Up to 40 kg TNT equivalent. Velocity 530 m/s. Ordered upgraded in 2018.

See also


  1. ^ "Russia's Mi-28NM combat helicopter to get new powerful munitions".
  2. ^ "Rostec's Tecmash presents brand new S-13B unguided aviation missile".
  3. ^ "S-13-T". Rosoboronexport.
  4. ^ "S-13-OF". Rosoboronexport.
  5. ^ "S-13DF". Rosoboronexport.
  • Soviet/Russian Aircraft Weapons Since World War Two, Yefim Gordon, ISBN 1-85780-188-1
  • Mil Mi-24 Hind Attack Helicopter, Yefim Gordon and Dimitri Komissarov, ISBN 1-84037-238-9
  • Jane's Air Launched Weapons Issue 36, Duncan Lennox, ISBN 0-7106-0866-7
  • Robert Grzęda: Npr S-13 i wyrzutnia B-13L in: Aeroplan nr. 1(58)/2006 (in Polish)