Russia has announced plans to deploy its state-of-the-art S-500 Prometheus ballistic and hypersonic missile defense system this year.
“We are expecting the first models of the S-500 air defense systems very soon,” RT quoted Russian Aerospace Forces Vice-Commander Lieutenant General Viktor Gumenny as saying on Friday.
According to reports, Russia’s Defense Ministry has already ordered five of the systems which are currently passing their final testing stages.
Viktor Murakhovsky, a member of the Military-Industrial Commission advisory council, said the new complex will be highly superior to its previous models such as the S-400.
The long-range, high-altitude intercept complex can reportedly simultaneously engage 10 targets moving as fast as seven kilometers per second—the approximate speed of an incoming intercontinental ballistic missile armed with nuclear warheads.
The system will able to destroy targets within a range of 600 kilometers, in altitudes of 180-200 kilometers and will be integrated with Moscow’s current air-defenses.
Russia also plans to replace its S-300PS mobile SAM missile systems with the S-350 Vityaz (Knight) medium- and short-range complexes. The Vityaz is capable of carrying 12 projectiles while the S-300 can carry only four.
“The prototype tests of the antiaircraft missile system S-350 Vityaz of the air defense forces are currently going on. The first launches have been successful and the system has proved its characteristics and will be used on a large scale for the replacement of the antiaircraft missile system S-300PS,” added Gumenny.
The S-350 will utilize smaller, lighter and more maneuverable missiles, which function better in ultra-low and maximum heights and have longer ranges than their predecessors.