Maxim Pyadushkin writes:
Russian military leaders confirmed last week that the development of an all-new long range air defense system, dubbed S-500, is under way, and revealed some operational parameters of the future weapon.
Air Force Commander Gen. Col. Alexander Zelin was quoted by RIA Novosti as saying that S-500 will be a completely new system, not a further development of the current S-400 Triumf SAM. He mentioned that the target detection range of the new system will be extended by 150-200 km compared to the S-400.
S-400 deployed near Moscow (Russian Defense Ministry)
According to the Almaz-Antey company, the designer of the S-400 and the future S-500, the Triumf has a detection range of 600 km, implying that the S-500 will be able to detect targets at 750-800 km. The S-500 is also expected to be able to engage 10 targets simultaneously, four more than the S-400 and the earlier S-300PM.
Zelin said that the S-500 will be ready “in the near future”. The Russian Air Defense Forces, a part of the Air Force, have just started to receive the S-400. The first S-400 regiment was deployed near Moscow in 2007, the second one in 2008. Earlier, military officials said that the long-term program calls for the acquisition of 23 Triumf battalions by 2015.