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Russian Air Defence Forces Already Training S-500 System Operators – General

© Sputnik / Grigoriy SisoevRecharging an S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft weapon system during the combat duty drills of the surface to air-misile regiment in the Moscow Region.
Recharging an S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft weapon system during the combat duty drills of the surface to air-misile regiment in the Moscow Region. - Sputnik International
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The S-500 Prometey mobile missile-based air defence system is expected to begin coming online in 2020, eventually becoming the backbone of Russia's integrated air defence network.

The first group of operators of the S-500 air defence system is already receiving training, Lieut. Gen. Vladimir Lyaporov, chief of the Zhukov Air and Space Defence Academy has indicated.

"I will point out that 2019 will see the graduation of the first officers from the academy under the training program for the S-500 complex, which has not yet been introduced into the forces, but which we expect in the near future," Lyaporov said, speaking to the military's Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper.

Combat duty 3PK S-400 Triumph in Moscow region - Sputnik International
Sneak Peek: Key Features of Russia's Next Gen S-500 Air Defense System Unveiled
The S-500 Prometey air defence system is the latest generation Russian air defences, intended to supplement both the mobile S-400 air defence system and the stationary A-135 anti-ballistic missile system around Moscow. Developed by the Almaz-Antey Air Defence Concern, the system is expected to be introduced into the military in 2020, with priority delivery set for the Moscow region and central Russia.

Although most of the system's characteristics have been successfully kept under wraps, for obvious reasons, it is known that the S-500 will have an operational range of 600 km, and to be able of engaging targets at altitudes over 95 km, meaning it will be capable of hitting enemy low-orbit satellites and space-based weapons. The system will also be effective against ballistic missiles, UAVs, and hypersonic cruise missiles flying at speeds up to Mach 15.6, making the S-500 the world's only air defence system capable of engaging hypersonic targets.

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