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Pentagon tested an anti-radiation missile to neutralize Russian S-400 system

WASHINGTON, (BM) – The United States has tested an improved version of the AGM-88 HARM, a weapon designed to destroy radars and neutralize air defense systems, learned BulgarianMilitary.com.

Read more: F-35 fighter and S-400 missile system will face each other in Syria in coming weeks

However, the Military Review magazine even called the modernized American missile powerless against the Russian S-400.

Journalists said that the updated version of the AGM-88 HARM has an increased range – up to 230 kilometers [up to 150 – ed.]. The American media wrote that this missile would be a possible option to counter the S-400 anti-aircraft missile system [SAM – ed].

However, the Military Review magazine noted that, in comparison with the AGM-88 HARM, the 40H6 anti-aircraft missile, which the C-400 is equipped with, has an advantage in range of more than 150 km. That is, to defeat the S-400, an American aircraft with AGM-88 HARM on board will have to go into the coverage area of ​​the Russian complex. This means that the American missile is powerless against air defense systems.

F-35 fifth-generation fighter jet vs. S-400 missile system

As it became known, in July, an F-35 test fighter should be delivered to Israel from the USA specifically for tests against the anti-aircraft missile system, which is available at the Russian Khmeimim air base in Syria.

That is, the competition is not virtual, but in real combat conditions.

Read more: The US Sale AGM-88E Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missiles to Germany

The fight will be interesting – the best fighter in the world [according to the USA] against the best anti-aircraft missile system to date [this is a generally accepted opinion]. This is not even a test, but a test of the combat qualities of an aircraft made using stealth technology, which must overcome the S-400 defense system and prove the superiority of the F-35. A risky venture, but if successful, the United States will receive a kind of “quality mark” for a fighter whose reputation has been tarnished more than once.

AGM-88 HARM missile

The AGM-88 HARM [High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile] is a tactical, air-to-surface anti-radiation [anti-radar – ed.] missile designed to home in on electronic transmissions coming from surface-to-air radar systems.

It was originally developed by Texas Instruments as a replacement for the AGM-45 Shrike and AGM-78 Standard ARM system. Production was later taken over by Raytheon Corporation when it purchased the defense production business of Texas Instruments.

The AGM-88 can detect, attack and destroy a radar antenna or transmitter with minimal aircrew input. The proportional guidance system that homes in on enemy radar emissions has a fixed antenna and seeker head in the missile’s nose.

A smokeless, solid-propellant, booster-sustainer rocket motor propels the missile at speeds over Mach 2.0. The HARM missile was a program led by the U.S. Navy, and it was first carried by the A-6E, A-7, and F/A-18A/B aircraft, and then it equipped the EA-6B aircraft. RDT&E for use on the F-14 aircraft was begun, but not completed.

Read more: Qatar Buys 24 AH-64E Apache Attack Helicopters and 2,500 AGM-114R Hellfire Missiles

The U.S. Air Force [USAF – ed.] put the HARM onto the F-4G Wild Weasel aircraft, and later on specialized F-16s equipped with the HARM Targeting System [HTS – ed.]. The HTS pod, used by the USAF only, allows F-16s to detect and automatically target radar systems with HARMs instead of relying on the missile’s sensors alone.

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