MOSCOW, November 28 (RIA Novosti) – Russia has started the deployment of aerospace defense units in the Arctic and construction of an early missile warning radar in the country’s extreme north, the commander of Aerospace Defense Forces said Thursday.
“The expansion of [missile early warning] radar coverage is one of the key areas of our work, especially when it comes to [Russia’s] extreme north – we have already started the deployment of electronic warfare units in the Arctic,” Maj. Gen. Alexander Golovko said.
Golovko also said construction of an advanced early missile warning radar site has started near the town of Vorkuta, situated just north of the Arctic Circle.
Russia is planning to complete its comprehensive missile early warning network by 2018. Four Voronezh-class radar stations that can easily be relocated are already part of this network.
A Voronezh-DM radar is on combat duty in the Krasnodar Territory and a Voronezh-M radar is in the Leningrad region. The Voronezh-DM radars in the Kaliningrad and Irkutsk regions are in the testing stage of operation.
In addition to the Vorkuta radar, the preparations for construction of new-generation radars are underway in the Krasnoyarsk and the Altai territories, as well as in central Russia (the Orenburg Region), Golovko said.
Voronezh-class radars have an operational range of 6,000 kilometers (3,700 miles). They are more energy-efficient, can be quickly redeployed to a new site and require a smaller crew to operate, compared to previous generation stations.
President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that Russia will put on combat duty seven Voronezh-class radars in the next five years.
The new radars will eventually replace the outdated Dnepr- and Daryal-class radars and close all gaps in radar coverage on Russia's borders.