What Is This Mystery Row Of Spheres In A Ukrainian Field?

A mysterious row of what looks to be 16 structures, which look to be either spherical or hemispherical, has, at least according to photos circulating online, appeared somewhere in Ukraine. This has led to speculation that this could be some kind of new Russian electronic warfare or other military-related capability, but an agricultural installation of some kind may also be a possibility.

Serhii Beskrestnov posted an aerial view of the curious array, on his Telegram channel earlier today. He also shared another shot that looks to show the structures on the back of a truck before they were erected.

The aerial view of the mystery array. Serhii Beskrestnov/Telegram
The second picture that shows the structures loaded on a truck, apparently before they were erected in a row. Serhii Beskrestnov/Telegram

There is what could be camouflage netting or some kind of tarp placed around the array, as well as a cleared area nearby where the apparent truck is situated.

A close-up of two of the structures showing what may be camouflage netting between them. Serhii Beskrestnov/Telegram
An example of what also may be camouflage netting near where the truck is parked. Serhii Beskrestnov/Telegram

Both pictures appear to be either very high-resolution satellite images or were taken by a drone or aircraft flying overhead, which seems more likely. Where and when the images were taken is unknown.

Beskrestnov (also known by the pseudonyms Serhii Flash or Flesh; his first name is also sometimes written Serhiy) is a Ukrainian servicemember who has been cited as an expert in “radio technologies” and other military electronics.

“It seemed that I already knew everything the enemy had in terms of technological solutions,” according to a translation of Beskrestnov’s post on Telegram accompanying the images, which are now circulating elsewhere on social media. “And here I am perplexed by a set of some hemispheres that are unfolded directly in a row.”

A common suggestion on social media is that these could be inflatable spherical antennas or antenna enclosures, possibly for communications purposes, like the ones made by GATR Technologies in the United States. Beskrestnov addressed that possibility specifically in his post, discounting it given that the structures appear to be hemispherical, as well as rigid and stackable, rather than spherical and inflatable.

A GATR technologies inflatable satellite communications antenna. NASA
Close-up views of the structures in the pictures that Serhii Beskrestnov shared showing signs of them being hemispherical and rigid in construction.Serhii Beskrestnov/Telegram

Beskrestnov also explicitly noted that the array does not conform to Russia’s 1B75 Penicillin, a counter-battery system that uses acoustic sensors and thermal imaging to detect incoming artillery fire and then geolocate its source, as well as that country’s known “REB” systems – at least to his knowledge. REB here is the Russian acronym for radio-electronic warfare.

None of this rules out the possibility that these are antennas, or coverings for them, which are part of an electronic warfare, communications, or sensor system of some kind.

Despite limited use initially, electronic warfare capabilities, including GPS and other radiofrequency jamming, has become a major factor for both sides in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. It is a particularly important tool for helping counter the increasingly ubiquitous threat posed by various tiers of drones, including highly maneuverable first-person view (FPV) kamikaze types.

An array like this could also contain sensors capable of detecting signals and geolocating their emitters via triangulation. The structures could be field fortifications or obstacles of some kind, or serve some other military purpose entirely.

It’s also worth noting that the pictures show what looks to be a relatively well-tended field without large track marks that one might associate with the movement of large numbers of heavy military trucks. This raises the question of whether what is seen in the images might be non-military and possibly agriculture in nature. Ukraine has a very large agricultural sector and farming has continued even in certain areas relatively close to the fighting since Russia launched its all-out invasion in 2022. Civilian farming equipment has been targeted in the course of the fighting.

Without more information and context, including where exactly the mystery array is situated and what other signs of military-related activity there might be, it is unfortunately impossible to say for sure at this time what purpose the structures serve.

With these images now circulating online, perhaps additional views of these curious structures or other additional information about them will emerge. In the meantime, we would love to hear from you as to what you think they are or if you recognize these kinds of objects.

Contact the author: joe@twz.com