|Type:||Surface -to- Air|
|Range (km):||3- 100|
|Ceiling (km):||0.025- 30|
|Speed (m/sec):||2400 (8 M)|
|Type of seeker:||-|
|Weight of warhead:||150 kg|
|Number of missiles:||4|
RUSSIAN S-300V AND AMERICAN PATRIOT: WHO LEADS THE WAY?
In modern warfare, tactical and theater ballistic missiles are widely relied upon to destroy key installations of an enemy land force.
As the ballistic
missiles are noted for high speed, low radar signature and low vulnerability, the problem
of their engagement is extremely complex and hard to solve. All of the developed ADM
systems, including the American Patriot developed by Raytheon, were originally conceived
as anti-aircraft missile systems and, therefore, are not really capable of countering
tactical and theater missiles. Until the end of the 1970s, the NATO member-states had not
paid much attention to the protection of their territories and installations against
possible strikes by tactical and theater ballistic missiles. The interest in this problem
arose sharply by the mid-1980s because missile weapon systems appeared in third-world
The upgraded version of the Patriot ADM system, designated RAS-2, was employed during the Persian Gulf war. Analysis shows that its anti-missile capabilities are very limited and it cannot ensure effective anti-missile defense of an area. In most cases it hit the target missile's body but did not destroy its warhead. The Patriot's drawbacks cannot be eliminated by introducing partial upgrades into certain ground-based system elements.
Today, the only ADM system in the world that can effectively counter tactical and theater ballistic missiles is the Russian-made S-300V, manufactured by Antey.
Unlike the ADM systems in service with the Western armies, the S-300V system was originally conceived as a weapon system destined to counter tactical and theater ballistic missiles, as well as other high-speed, low-signature, highly maneuverable and low-vulnerable targets. The unique capabilities of the S-300V ADM system are, in many respects, attributable to the missiles that had been purposely developed for this system and that are unrivaled in domestic and international rocket-building.
The S-300V ADM system incorporates two
missiles: the 9M83 missile (NATO designation Gladiator) and 9M82 missile (Giant). Both
missiles and their launchers have been designed by the Novator Design Bureau
(Yekaterinburg) that has been involved in the development of rockets and missiles for over
40 years. The Bureau has developed such widely known air defense missiles as the 3M8 for
the Krug ADM system and the 9M38 for the Buk ADM system. The Novator Design Bureau carries
on development work in close collaboration with the Kalinin Machine-building Plant, which
normally starts to tool up for the new product before the design work is completed and
then puts it into series production. The continued collaboration between designers and
manufacturers yields perceptible results. Products manufactured by the Kalinin Plant are
noted for their high quality and reliability.
The 9M83 missile is designed to counter weapons employed to deliver dense attacks. It is highly effective against any type of existing and prospective aircraft at ranges of up to 75 km, against SRAM-type aero-ballistic missiles, tactical ballistic missiles of the Lance type at ranges of up to 40 km, and against nap-of-the-earth cruise missiles. And neither an anti-missile evasive maneuver performed by the target nor electronic countermeasures can prevent the 9M83 AD missile from performing its mission.
The 9M82 missile is the most powerful weapon,
featuring much higher speed characteristics and capable of defeating all of the
above-mentioned targets. However, it is designed primarily for the engagement of theater
missiles at ranges of up to 35 to
The high operational capabilities have been built into these missiles due to the wide application of the elements of artificial intelligence and other technical advances uncommon for missiles of this class.
The two-stage configuration of the missiles has made it possible to take full advantage of their propulsion plants and obtain high flight and performance characteristics. It can also rapidly alter their flight and performance characteristics to suit the specifics of their combat employment through the newly introduced sustainer firing adjustable delay system and created two missiles featuring different flight and performance characteristics on the basis of unified sustainer stage.
As to the technical solutions that ensure the high efficiency of the missiles against battlefield and theater missiles and other threats, particular emphasis should be placed on their armament which can be adapted to the type of threat and requirements of combat employment. This armament includes:
(a) nonisotropic warhead;
The high warhead detonation instant evaluation accuracy is attained from the ample data about the point of impact with the target, including the missile and target speed, relative orientation of their axes, miss vector, impact point, impact point altitude, and target type.
Depending on the mission to be accomplished and jamming conditions, the fuse chooses the operating mode optimal for the given situation to ensure the highest target engagement efficiency.
The missiles are very simple in design and easy to use, because they have been designed in accordance with the "missile - cartridge" principle. The missiles require no maintenance for their entire service life.
The high performance characteristics of the missiles are also attributable to their launchers. Mounted on a tracked chassis, they feature high cross-country capacity and can move within troop battle formations. The launcher can be deployed and made operational within only five minutes of arriving at a launch site. The launcher can stop at any place and fire missiles from an unprepared launch site. All operations to prepare missile launches and launch the missiles are automated and, therefore, do not require highly skilled personnel to do the job. Preparation of a missile for firing, where its onboard equipment is checked for serviceability and correct functioning, is performed by the launcher within 15 seconds.
To prevent the enemy from detecting launch sites in modern warfare, it is vital to be capable of promptly moving to new positions. As our launchers can do it swiftly, their survivability is high.
In terms of anti-battlefield and anti-theater missile capability, the Russian S-300V is unrivaled. Under severe competition on the arms market, it is very difficult for our traditional rival, the USA, trying to win contracts for the Patriot ADM system, to admit this fact. A vivid example of this is the disgraceful story of the ad booklet published by Raytheon company and distributed in Abu Dhabi at the IDEX 97 international exhibition of arms and military equipment. The booklet intentionally perverted the facts regarding the S-300V ADM system's combat characteristics and price. However, foreign experts were compelled to admit in the Jane's magazine published in England that the S-300V system possesses qualities which no other ADM system in the West will feature until the end of the current decade. The system is a triumph of the development of Soviet tactical anti-missile defense. Capable of intercepting tactical ballistic missiles, it is unrivaled, for there is no other ADM system in the world that can do it.
But more meaningful than the words is that the Americans have recognized the superiority of the S-300V ADM system by buying this system to study it.
Today, the USA is making a strenuous effort to develop the RAS-3 version of the Patriot ADM system and the THAAD system in order to eliminate the lag in the development of tactical anti-missile defense systems, but the USA will have to solve the problems that were solved by Russian specialists long ago.