Unfortunately, only the most general phrases were heard in the President’s Address. V. Putin stated that significant results were obtained in the field of laser weapons. At the same time, this is not about testing or the start of production - combat complexes of a new type entered the troops last year. The President noted that one should not go into details yet, but pointed out the potential of a fundamentally new weapons. A story about a new laser complex was accompanied by a demo video from the Ministry of Defense.
Several models of weapons, presented in early March, at that time did not have a name. In this regard, the Ministry of Defense launched a competition on the choice of names for it. In the evening of March 22, these events ended, and according to their results, the laser complex was given a new name “Peresvet”. The voting results were summarized live on the Russia 1 TV channel in the 60 Minutes program. Among the guests of the telecast was the Deputy Minister of Defense Yuri Borisov, responsible for promising developments. Among other things, he spoke about some still unknown features of the laser complex.
Y. Borisov reminded about foreign developments in the field of laser weapons. Many countries work in this area. In particular, in the United States, experimental complexes of this class have already been created, capable of fighting manpower or light armored vehicles. However, as the Deputy Minister of Defense noted, Russian specialists have certain advantages over their American counterparts. What they are, he, however, did not specify.
The new information about the Peresvet complex, its features and development paths was published on May 9 by Zvezda TV channel Zvezda, and again received from the Deputy Minister of Defense. In an interview for the national television channel, Yu. Borisov spoke about current work, as well as promising models of weapons and equipment. Among other topics, the fate of the Peresvet system was touched upon.
Journalist Yuri Podkopaev recalled the weapons systems presented by the president in March and asked if there was any intention to show the combat laser complex during a parade on Red Square?
Y. Borisov replied that this was possible. The first show of Peresvet at the parade may take place over the next two or three years. Such an assessment of the possible timing is due to the fact that the project has already moved into the modernization stage. Completion of certain works on the complex will allow organizing its passage in a mechanized column during the parade.
The deputy minister noted that at present and in the existing configuration, the laser complex is large and complex. It includes a large number of support vehicles needed to work in a combat position. According to the results of modernization, the size of the complex will be reduced. When Peresvet becomes quite compact, it will probably be presented to the public. Where the "premiere" of the newest system will take place - at the parade on Victory Day or at one of the military-technical exhibitions - has not yet been clarified.
More recent reports on the Peresvet complex are not yet available. However, the few public information well complements the incomplete picture left over from the first announcement. At the same time, a significant part of the data, including those of greatest interest, remains a secret. So, officials have not yet talked about the purpose of the laser complex, and also did not specify its technical characteristics and combat capabilities. In these questions, it is necessary to rely on various assessments, not all of which can be true.
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It should be recalled that it was shown in early March. The official video from the Ministry of Defense, the entire length of 21, demonstrated for a second some components of the Peresvet system, but did not disclose any details. However, what they saw allowed to make estimates and projections.
The video began with frames showing the complex on the march. Two truck-mounted KamAZ trucks with special semi-trailers were moving along the highway; their appearance did not indicate internal equipment. Then they demonstrated the process of deploying the complex to a position in which at least five cars and trailers with various equipment, including communication and control devices, were involved. The viewers were also shown calculation jobs equipped with liquid crystal monitors and control panels.
Finally, the video showed the actual laser installation of a new type. It is located in the aft part of one of the vans with hydraulic jacks for leveling, and is protected by a sliding roof. On the platform inside the van is installed U-shaped support, which is placed on the swinging unit. At one end of the rather large casing there is a large device-emitter with a movable protective cover, as well as a pair of optical devices of a characteristic tubular type. Guidance in two planes is carried out by turning the swinging block on the support and changing the position of the radiator, which was shown in the video.
At the same time, neither the video clip nor the accompanying president’s speech contained any specific data on the purpose, technical characteristics or features of the operation of the complex. However, this fact only contributed to the emergence of a number of versions and assumptions that could hardly have appeared with the timely publication of official information.
According to one of the most common opinions, the Peresvet combat laser complex is intended for use as part of an air defense. The available equipment obviously allows him to find and take air targets for tracking, and then attack them with a laser beam. High-power luminous flux can, at a minimum, disrupt the operation of the enemy's optical-electronic systems or completely disable them.
In addition, in the presence of a high-power radiator, the combat complex can damage not only the optics, but also the structural elements of the aircraft or their weapons. In the latter case, the beam must literally burn through the target body, and then damage its internal equipment or provoke the detonation of warheads.
Such capabilities can be used to combat strike aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles or aviation means of destruction - in general, for any purpose equipped with optics, or having melting structural elements. Apparently, the latest Peresvet complex turns out to be the first domestic real result of work in this area - and the first air defense laser received by the troops.
A few days ago, the Deputy Minister of Defense indicated that several vehicles were part of the Peresvet system, and this could interfere with its display at the parade. Such features of the complex have become known since the day of the first announcement. So, the demonstration video showed that another vehicle is in the firing position next to the semi-trailer-carrier of the combat laser, and both components of the complex are connected to each other by numerous cables. Most likely, the second Peresvet machine carries autonomous means of power supply.
To obtain high technical and combat characteristics, a combat laser needs adequate power. Therefore, the generator of the required power may simply not fit in the same semi-trailer with a laser installation. It should be noted that in the recent past, a version was expressed about the use of a promising nuclear power plant as part of the Peresvet complex. For all its strangeness and ambiguity, this assumption fully justifies the existence of a separate carrier of means of energy supply.
In a recent interview with the Deputy Minister of Defense, Y. Borisov indicated that the defense industry is currently engaged in the modernization of the Peresvet system, and the result of this work could be an increase in operational characteristics by reducing the number of maintenance vehicles. Such tasks, among other things, can be solved by creating “combined” machines and semi-trailers that carry several systems at once, while they are located on different carriers. In particular, an operator's cabin and a laser installation can be located on the common chassis.
According to official data, a number of Peresvet complexes have already been delivered to the troops and are in operation. At the same time, modernization is being carried out aimed at improving the main characteristics and ease of use. The army has already received a fundamentally new weapon that will become even better in the foreseeable future. And besides, after the upcoming update, which will take several years to come, the combat laser complex will be able to get into a mechanized column and pass through Red Square. It remains to hope that new interesting information about the Peresvet project will appear before the updated complexes can take part in the parade.
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