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25 Jun, 2019 12:23

Russia’s advanced S-500 SAM ‘ready for series production’ – minister

Russia’s advanced S-500 SAM ‘ready for series production’ – minister

The S-500 Prometey, Russia’s next-generation surface-to-air long-range missile system, has completed most of its trials and is ready to go into series production, according to the Russian industry and trade minister.

The development of the system is in its “final phase” after each element of the system was tested individually, Denis Manturov told Interfax in an interview. The current work is focused on checking the S-500’s performance as an integrated system.

“All main specifications of the air defense system have been confirmed during the tests and it is now ready for series production,” he said, adding that the hardware will be delivered to the Defense Ministry on schedule.

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The S-500 is the newest incarnation of long-range air defense systems produced by Almaz-Antey, a leading Russian defense contractor. The specifications of the system remain classified, but according to defense sources and interviews with company officials it will have greatly enhanced anti-missile capabilities compared to the current S-400 SAM, thanks to new phased array target acquisition radar.

The system is expected to engage intermediate-range cruise and ballistic missiles, hypersonic missiles with speeds of up to Mach 5 and intercontinental ballistic missiles during terminal phase. With new interceptors reportedly capable of reaching low earth orbit, the system may double as an anti-satellite weapon and could intercept ICBMs mid-course, according to some reports.

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