How the Russian air defense looks like with S-400 and other systems?
MOSCOW, (BM) – Anti-aircraft gunners will begin to work out an updated system to combat massive attacks by cruise missiles and drones. As the Ministry of Defense told Izvestia, it is included in the combat training system of the air defense forces. The novelty was tested in the fall of 2019 at the Combat Commonwealth exercises. In preparing the maneuver scenario, Syrian experience was taken into account.
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The air defense and missile defense troops repelled a massive training strike of cruise, ballistic missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the Astrakhan region at the Ashuluk training ground. In addition to Russia, combat crews and representatives of the command of the troops of Belarus, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan participated in the maneuvers. All UAVs and missiles were successfully destroyed, told Izvestia in the Ministry of Defense.
During the exercises, a situation was simulated that could develop in reality at the borders of the CIS. In the future, the number of such exercises should increase, said the former deputy commander in chief of the Air Force on the issues of the integrated air defense system of the CIS countries, Lieutenant General Aitech Bizhev.
“New types of weapons create new challenges,” said Aitech Bizhev. – Prior to the termination of the INF Treaty, massive attacks by cruise missiles could be launched from ships. After cancellation, they can be placed in land launchers, which seriously expands the territory of their use. Medium and shorter range cruise missiles can now be installed in Poland, Romania or the Baltic countries.
In the 20th century, medium- and shorter-range ground-based missiles were based in NATO countries in western Europe; the Soviet Union had a solid buffer from the Warsaw Pact countries. Now, the flying time of cruise missiles to cities such as Moscow, Minsk or St. Petersburg can be reduced to five minutes. To be able to repulse the strike, it is necessary to strengthen the satellite constellation and other reconnaissance equipment, improve the radar field, and develop and tighten to the borders high-precision means of preemptive strike, said Aitech Bizhev.
During the maneuvers, special attention was paid to the fight against UAVs. Now even semi-handicraft products can cause serious damage to equipment and personnel. Therefore, before the exercises, all terrorist attacks with the help of UAVs at the Russian air base Khmeimim and a number of other objects in Syria were analyzed, and the theoretical achievements were verified, confirming their effectiveness.
“Shell” will help
During the maneuvers, experimental exercises of mobile groups were also carried out, which included the Pantsir and the radar. The latter can be used to enhance the capabilities of radar monitoring of strategically important territories. The early warning station can be located in the borderline or in the direction of probable attacks. Additional anti-aircraft guns are especially useful in mountainous areas where it is difficult to detect low-flying targets – the same cruise missiles.
Such stations will collect intelligence information at distant approaches. They are able to determine the number of aircraft, altitude and direction of flight, the construction of battle formations.
If necessary, radars can work together with anti-aircraft missile defense systems, aviation, border and coastal control forces and air traffic control, which is responsible for the flight safety of both military and civilian aircraft.
With the help of ZRPK “Shell”, one or another strategic direction can be quickly strengthened in any part of the country. “Armor” can enter the battle almost immediately after unloading – the crew only needs to take their places and turn on the equipment.
The “shells” are equipped with a detection radar, a target tracking station and an armament complex, which includes two 30-mm anti-aircraft guns and missiles in transport and launch containers.
They can act in tandem with the S-300 of various modifications, the S-350 Vityaz and the S-400 Triumph. Automated control system (ACS) allows radar and air defense systems to exchange information in real time.
Fighting cruise missiles is the most difficult combat task for air defense systems, said military expert Anton Lavrov.
“In order to fight off such attacks, you need a layered air defense system,” said Anton Lavrov. – Ideally, it should have three zones: in the farthest, the S-400 will be responsible for destroying targets, in the middle – “Buki” and “Armor”, in the near – “Torah”.
In Syria, Russian complexes are combined using an automated control system – this allows several complexes to receive target designation and destruction commands from a single command post. Only the closest interaction of air defense systems allows us to build a highly effective defense in many layers, said Anton Lavrov.
The air defense system of Russia is constantly being improved. At the end of last year, after the commissioning of early warning radars of the Voronezh type and the over-the-horizon Container radar, a single radar field was created around the country’s perimeter. In the near future, the new S-500 Prometheus systems will begin to enter service, which are designed to destroy cruise and hypersonic missiles, aircraft and helicopters, as well as drones and low-orbit satellites.
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Author: Aleksey Ram, Bogdan Stepovoy
Original title: Syrian Defense: Air Defense polishes cruise missile tactics
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect BGM`s editorial stance.