S-500 Will Be Capable of Destroying Hypersonic Weapons in Space, Russian Aerospace Forces Say

© Lockheed MartinArtist's conception of a hypersonic missile during its launch phase.
Artist's conception of a hypersonic missile during its launch phase. - Sputnik International
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The S-500 Prometey ("Prometheus") is a cutting-edge surface-to-air defence missile system with a range of 400-600 kilometers (250-370 miles). Head engineer Pavel Sozinov announced earlier that it would be able to intercept targets hundred kilometres above the surface of the Earth.

The S-500 Prometey ("Prometheus") defence system will be capable of destroying hypersonic weapons in near-Earth space, according to a statement by Sergei Surovikin, commander of the Russian Aerospace Forces.

According to Surovikin, the S-500's technical features make the system a first generation space-defence network.

"The characteristics implemented in the S-500 air defence system make it possible for it to destroy, in addition to aerodynamic and ballistic targets, hypersonic weapons of all modifications, including in near space", he said.

Surovikin touted the defence system as currently having no analogue in the world.

The S-500 Prometey ("Prometheus"), also known as 55R6M "Triumfator-M", is a universal complex of long-range and high-altitude interception with increased missile defense potential. The weapon's main tasks will include combating medium-range ballistic missiles and intercontinental ballistic missiles if they are in close proximity.

The cutting-edge defence system was tested by the air defence troops in 2019, and 2021 is expected to be the year when the S-500 will be first deployed by the Russian armed forces, according to the Defence Ministry.

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