Will the absolutely insurmountable air defense system soon provide full protection to his country, its citizens and its armed forces? In fact, thanks to rapid technological progress, we can say that we are approaching it, especially in the person of one country - Israel. Having constantly challenging unfriendly and often aggressive neighbors, he is a leader in this field, which is also largely promoted by a very creative and operational defense industry supporting his country’s integrated ground-based air defense system in constant combat readiness.
The fire control operator and MIM-104 Patriot technicians wind down the mast with antennas during the Panther Assurance tactical exercises held in Poland this January
The launch of an interceptor missile from Vandenberg Air Base in the direction of the ballistic target missile during tests conducted in December 2010
Due to the fact that Iran and some Arab countries openly urge that Israel be completely erased from the world map, the 70-year-old Jewish state has no alternative but to defend itself with these violent and motivated opponents from intercontinental ballistic missiles, as well as from its beak and claws and from homemade rockets collected by terrorists in the garage. The situation is similar with South Korea, which, thanks to the presence on its land of a large number of US military and dense Patriot missile belts, is protected from any further expansionist and unpredictable military actions of the aggressive and militant fellow North Korea. The urgency of this problem was once again emphasized when North Korea experienced without notice a new ballistic missile capable of reaching Alaska, adding to this public attacks aimed at the American people and at President Donald Trump in particular. In fairness, I must say that Trump did not remain in debt ...
After the next series of rocket launches of North Korea, the US military conducted an anti-ballistic missile defense system in May 2017, aimed at improving the defense of South Korea against attacks by northerners. Tests conducted at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, were recognized by US officials as successful after the upgraded long-range Patriot interceptor missile hit its target, an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) model.
Today, many experts believe that North Korea is developing an ICBM capable of reaching the US mainland. If the last communist (not formal, but real) regime on earth launches a rocket in the direction of the United States, South Korea or Japan, the Americans will certainly try to bring it down. But is this task so simple?
Raytheon's MIM-104 Patriot, is currently the most common anti-aircraft missile system in NATO countries. The photo shows the standard MIM-104D Patriot launcher on a MAN 8x8 truck. The heart of the Patriot battery is a fire control system consisting of AN / MPQ-53 or AN / MPQ-65 radar stations, AN / MSQ-104 battle control station, OE-349 mast group and EPER-Sh. Missiles are transported and launched from a launcher on a heavy truck that can carry up to four PAC-2 missiles or up to sixteen PAC-3 missiles. The Patriot Division also has a clearinghouse or management station for coordinating the launch of the Division and connecting the Patriot to the JTIDS or MIDS information distribution networks.
NORAD - the first radar defense belt
Since the philosophy of A2 / D2 (anti-access / area-denial - “blocking access / blocking the zone;“ blocking access ”means the ability to slow down or prevent the deployment of enemy forces in the theater of war or forcing him to create a bridgehead for the operation far removed from the desired deployment location; »Covers actions to limit freedom of maneuver, reduce operational efficiency and increase the risks associated with operations of friendly forces on the theater) becomes a new American mantra, drop by drop introduced in Awareness of the NATO military, let's discuss the state of this shield of democracy, from which it all began about 60 years ago. The North American aerospace defense command, known as the NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command), created in 1958 to protect North America from unexpected attacks by Soviet missiles, was the first integrated air defense system of constant combat readiness. In 1960, it consisted of 60 fighter squadrons (50 American and 10 Canadian), capable of intercepting objects in the air for 15 minutes after takeoff, while any unknown aircraft entering the airspace of North America could be detected in for 5 minutes, long-range radar stations located in the Arctic. NORAD justified its existence by keeping in check all the creeps of the enemy aviation, but this was only the first decade before the space age began, when satellites began to plow the expanses of the Universe and revolutionized communication systems, and intercontinental ballistic missiles contributed to a change in air defense priorities that previously consisted of responding to traditional bombers.
The threat of intercontinental ballistic missiles, which has become a real factor changing the rules of the game, forced the US to take another step forward in creating a strengthened air defense, ending with the so-called SDI program (strategic defense initiative), which Ronald Reagan first announced in March 1983. The purpose of the newly created missile defense system was to protect the United States from attacks of a ballistic strategic nuclear weapons (ICBMs or submarine-launched ballistic missiles) of a potential enemy. The system, which soon received the second name "Star Wars", was supposed to unite ground units and anti-ballistic missile defense platforms deployed in orbit. This initiative was more focused on strategic defense than on the doctrine of the advancing strategic offensive — in the mass consciousness the doctrine of "mutual assured destruction." The SDI program implementation organization was established in 1984 in order to oversee SDI and its powerful space-based missile defense component. These ambitious American defense systems actually became the beginning of the end of the USSR. The United States, ultimately, won the arms race and for a while remained on the planet the only superpower.
In case of successful development of the space anti-missile component of the PIO, the United States would be able to solve several serious problems. If interceptors were placed in orbit, some of them could be positioned over the Soviet Union all the time. In this case, attacking the missiles, they would have to fly only on a downward path, so they could be much smaller and cheaper compared to interceptor missiles that had to be launched from the ground. In addition, it would be much easier to track the ICBMs due to their significant infrared radiation, and to hide these signatures will require the creation of large missiles instead of small radar traps. In addition, each interceptor missile would knock down one ICBM, while the separable warhead with blocks of individual guidance would not have time to complete its task. Considering all this, and also the fact that an interceptor missile is a relatively cheap means, the advantage would clearly be on the defense side, which would be further strengthened with the advent of network-centric destruction systems.
During the Polish-American Panther Assurance exercise, which took place in Poland in January 2017, soldiers from the 7 Brigade of the air defense signal each other that the site is “clean” when installing the Patriot radar. These exercises were aimed at demonstrating the deployment of 5-7 installations as confirmation of the readiness of the units. Panther Assurance exercises demonstrate the ability of NATO to quickly and freely deploy troops across borders and ensure freedom of movement throughout the region.
Brian Likhani, head of the radar warning service at NORAD, believes that the “system systems” approach in developing radars helps NORAD today to “look at the sky and anticipate a threat.” The task of the service is to integrate the new platforms into the radar infrastructure of NORAD, as well as to upgrade the existing platforms of over-the-horizon radar and long-range radar.
In a statement, the director of the US Missile Defense Agency, Jim Siring, called the American ground-based missile defense system on the Ground Flight-based Midcourse Midcourse (GMD) mission "vital to defend our country." Recent tests have “demonstrated that we have a powerful, credible means of deterring real threats.” The efficiency of the system was also confirmed during the first test launch of a real anti-missile missile system based on an ICBM model. Previous system tests were performed in 2014 year. In the past, interception of ICBMs was extremely difficult, in fact, akin to hitting one bullet into another from a long distance. Since 1999, the GMD rocket hit its targets only in 9 from 17 launches, there were also many problems with mechanical subsystems. If you rely on these figures, then the American anti-missile shield seems to be only 50% effective ... or 50% ineffective, as you like.
Based on statistics, even taking into account the latest tests, experts doubt the progress of the GMD system. Not so long ago, Phillip Coyle, a senior research officer at the Center for Arms Control, noted that interception tests “were successful twice in a row, which inspires a bit of optimism,” but added that only two of the last five attempts were successful. "At school, 40% is not a passing grade," said Coyle. - Looking at the test reports, we can not rely on this missile defense program to protect the United States from North Korean missiles. And especially when it comes to nuclear missiles ... ”
In the 2016, a Pentagon report was published with a similar conclusion. "GMD has shown limited capabilities to protect American territory from a small number of simple medium-range missiles or intercontinental ballistic missiles launched from North Korea or Iran." Since 2002, the US missile defense has cost the country a pretty penny, about 40 billions of dollars. In the budget proposal to the Trump administration on 2018, the Pentagon requested another 7,9 billion dollars for the Missile Defense Agency, including one and a half billion dollars for the GMD system.
According to US officials, the United States is developing additional ways of disrupting rocket attacks, conducting, among other things, an assessment of cyber security. A Pentagon spokesman said the latest tests are just "one of the elements of a broader anti-missile defense strategy that we can use to combat possible threats." The American anti-missile system THAAD is also designed to combat short-range, medium-range and long-range missile threats. Like most of the recent missile defense tests, the program aims to intercept North Korean missiles on the march trajectory. In March, 2017, THAAD complexes were deployed in South Korea; it happened shortly before the former president Park Geun-hye left her office. South Korean new president Moon Hu Ying after the last American trials began an investigation. As the country's new president, Mun promised to take a more friendly stance towards North Korea, calling for a national dialogue between the two countries. North Korea, meanwhile, has shifted to the United States.
"The THAAD complex is evidence that the United States is a violator and destroyer of the world, indifferent to regional stability." Total Pat ...
Over the past 15 years, the US Department of Defense has spent more than 24 billion dollars on acquiring a combination of systems to neutralize guided missiles that threaten the Americans and their allies. Despite the insistence of the Department of Defense, these investments did not lead to the creation of a full-fledged anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense system with sufficient capabilities to fight the volleys of a large number of ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and other precision-guided weapons that current enemies of Uncle Sam can make.
Test launch anti-missile Arrow 2. The Arrow (Hetz) family of ballistic missiles developed by Rafael to meet the Israeli needs for an anti-ballistic missile defense system that would be more effective in the fight against ballistic missiles than the MIM-104 Patriot complex, which the Israeli military does not favor. The development of the system, funded by Israel and the United States, began in the year 1986 and is still ongoing
The Iron Dome long-range detection radar is based on the Elta EL / M-2084 active phased array antenna. The Iron Dome is part of a promising multi-level missile defense system currently being developed by Israel (will also include Arrow 2 and Arrow 3, Barak 8 and Iron Beam and David's Sling missile defense systems) and should be deployed in 2018 year. The country will receive a comprehensive airspace defense system capable of destroying any ballistic missile launched by Iran or its Shiite satellites in the upper atmosphere or in space
According to many Washington experts, this state of affairs was partly due to the longstanding emphasis of the Department of Defense on the deployment of costly long-range ground-to-air intercept capabilities capable of destroying small salvo launches by anti-ship cruise missiles or ballistic missiles launched by states such as Iran and North Korea. This is also due to the fact that the US military has never dealt with an enemy who has high-precision means of hitting remote targets. However, in future conflicts, the most likely opponents of Washington will most likely use a large number of ground-based, air and sea-based guided weapons to overcome the underdeveloped air defense systems protecting American military bases and troops.
Currently, there is a discussion of recent American initiatives in the field of air defense and missile defense, which could increase the country's capabilities in combating successive launches of guided missiles that threaten its ability to project its military power throughout the world. And this concerns not only intercontinental ballistic missiles. In particular, the process of the development by the armed forces of their high-precision guided combat means and their ability to counter high-precision strikes in order to evaluate promising operational concepts and combat potential for air defense and missile defense is being studied.
Testing of the Stunner rocket complex of David’s Sling (David’s Anvil) in Israel. The curved nose of this rocket makes it one of a kind. The David's Sling (or Kelah David) complex, developed jointly by the Israeli company Rafael and the American Raytheon, will eventually replace the MIM-23 HAWK and MIM-104 Patriot systems in Israel. It is designed to intercept aircraft, drones, tactical ballistic missiles, medium and short-range missiles and cruise missiles launched at ranges from 40 to 300 km. Great interest in this land integrated air defense system was shown by India and the Gulf countries.
The launch of an Aster 30 rocket from a SAMP / T launcher. The regular test launches of Aster 30 rockets against flying targets allow the Italian and French SAMPT calculations to test their readiness and improve their professional skills as well as the reliability of this modern integrated air defense system.
Europe and NADGE
Immediately after the creation of the United Air Defense Command of the North American continent, NORAD, in December 1955, the NATO Military Committee approved the development of the so-called NATO Air Defense System NADGE (NATO Air Defense Ground Enviroment). The system was to be based in four areas of air defense responsibility, coordinated by SACEUR or the Supreme Commander of NATO forces in Europe. Anti-aircraft missile systems for the new air defense system were provided by all members of the Alliance, for the most part these were Nike Ajax systems. It is worth noting that one of the world's first anti-aircraft missile systems MIM-3 Nike Ajax was adopted in the 1954 year.
The predecessor of the American Patriot and Aster, the anti-aircraft missile system Nike Ajax, was created to fight the usual bombers flying at high subsonic speeds and altitudes over 15 km. Nike was initially deployed in the United States to protect against attacks by Soviet bombers, and later these complexes were deployed to protect American bases abroad, and also sold to several allies, including Belgium, France, West Germany and Italy. Some systems remained in service until the 90-s along with the newer Nike Hercules systems. Like the modern Patriot or SAMP / T systems, the Nike Ajax complex consisted of several radars, computers, missiles and their launchers. The launch positions were divided into three main parts: administrative zone A, zone of launchers with L rockets, and zone of integrated fire control IFC with radar and operations center. The IFC zone was located at a distance of 0,8-15 km from the launch pad, but within line of sight, so that the radars could see the missiles during launch.
Each SAMP / T launcher can launch eight Aster 30 rockets before reloading. SAMP / T, the brainchild of Eurosam, many experts consider the best air defense system in the NATO countries. It can be transported on board an Airbus A400M Atlas aircraft and deployed anywhere in the world where it is necessary for the Italian and French armed forces.
The early warning zone, created in 1956, was expanded to almost all of Western Europe, with 16 radar stations. This part of the system was built by 1962 year, it combined the existing national radar and was coordinated with the French stations. In 1960, the NATO countries agreed in the event of war to subordinate all their forces to the command of SACEUR air defense. These forces included operational control systems, radar installations, launchers of ground-to-air missiles, as well as interceptor aircraft.
The development of a single European air defense system continued. By 1972, NADGE was transformed into NATINADS, consisting of 84 radars and associated control centers (CRC). In 80, NATINADS was replaced by the AEGIS integrated airborne missile guidance system (Airborne Early Warning / Ground Environment Integration Segment) (note this AEGIS system is not to be confused with the homonymous name of the AEGIS (Iegis) integrated naval combat system) of the US Navy. Now it is possible to integrate the EU-121 aircraft and, later, the E-3 AWACS long-range radar detection and control aircraft, as well as display the resulting radar image and other information on the system displays. In the NATO AEGIS system, information was processed on Hughes H5118ME computers, which were replaced by H3118М computers installed in NADGE positions at the end of 60-x-beginning of 70-s. Thus, with the increase in computer capacity, NATINADS data processing capabilities have increased. The H5118M computer had an impressive 1 megabytes of memory and could handle 1,2 million instructions per second, whereas the previous model had a memory of just 256 kilobytes and a clock frequency of 150 thousand instructions per second.
In West Germany, NATINADS / AEGIS was supplemented with a force and facilities control system called German Air Defense Ground Environment (German Air Defense Ground Environment). The updated radar network of the southern part of West Germany and the Danish coastal radar system CRIS (Coastal Radar Integration System) were connected to the common European system. In order to combat the obsolescence of equipment in the middle of 90-s, NATO launched the AEGIS Site Emulator (ASE) program, under which NATINADS / AEGIS workstations with proprietary equipment (5118 computers and various IDM-2, HMD-22 and IDM operator consoles -80) were replaced by commercial servers and workstations, which also reduced the cost of operating the system.
In the early years of the 21 century, the initial capabilities of the ASE program were expanded with new hardware and software. It was possible to run emulator programs of different sites on the same equipment, so the system was renamed Muiti-AEGIS Site Emulator (MASE). In the near future, the MASE system will be replaced by NATO Air Command and Control System (ACCS). Meanwhile, due to changes in the political situation, the expansion of the North Atlantic alliance and the financial crisis, most of its member countries are trying to cut defense budgets. As a result, most of the obsolete morally and physically stations of the NATINADS system are gradually being decommissioned. Due to the fact that the defense budgets of European countries today rarely exceed 1% of GDP (with the exception of France, the United Kingdom and some Eastern European countries), it is necessary to develop an official concept for updating the European air defense system. Accelerating the process indirectly can help the American President Donald Trump, who constantly calls on Europeans to double their military spending, since the United States is not going to pay more for the defense of the Old World.
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