08:27 GMT +324 April 2017
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    The launchers of the S-400 air defense missile system which entered service at the Russian Aerospace Forces air defense unit in the Moscow Region. (File)

    S-500 to Strengthen Russia's 'Air Defense System of the 21 Century'

    © Sputnik/ Mikhail Voskresenskiy
    Military & Intelligence
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    Russia is in the process of creating an integrated national air defense system, which is expected to become fully operational once the cutting-edge S-500 Prometey surface-to-air missile system, also known as the 55R6M Triumfator-M, enters service, Major General Andrei Cheburin said.

    Cheburin, commander of the missile defense division of the 1st Air and Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense Army of the Russian Aerospace Defense Forces, told the newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda that activities aimed at creating "an integrated national defense system of the 21st century are in full swing."

    "This system will be finalized when [the Russian] Armed Forces receive the brand new long-range S-500 surface-to-air missile system and advanced radars," he explained.

    The S-500 is currently in development. Russian defense officials have not specified when the next-generation air defense system will begin tests.

    The S-500, designed by Almaz Antey, is said to have a range of 600 kilometers (more than 370 miles). The system can simultaneously intercept up to ten ballistic and hypersonic missiles traveling at a speed of 7 kilometers per second. The Prometey is capable of engaging targets at an altitude of up to 200 kilometers (more than 120 miles).

    The system is capable of intercepting aircraft and UAVs, as well as destroying low-earth-orbit satellites, space destruction devices and orbital weaponry. 

    The S-500 will be a major upgrade to the state-of-the-art S-400 complex that is already in service with the Russian Armed Forces.

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    Tags:
    military technology, air defense systems, air defense, S-500 Prometey, Russian Armed Forces, Andrei Cheburin, Russia
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