One of the main and necessary conditions for victory in battle is to ensure communication between intelligence and command centers and military units. It was the collapse of the communications system that largely predetermined the heavy losses of 1941. Since then, the role of stable communication in battle has only increased. This is especially true for aerial combat - because of its transience. Therefore, the improvement of communication systems and complexes today is given priority in the development of air defense systems.
Serious success in this direction was achieved during the next modernization of the Tor-M2 anti-aircraft missile system, carried out by the designers of the Izhevsk Electromechanical Plant Kupol and the Rubin Research and Production Enterprise. Modernization has undergone a set of communications equipment (KSS) SAM Tor-M2. During it, the capabilities of the air defense systems of the Tor family were significantly expanded in a number of areas, in particular:
- visual notification of the approach of targets to the detection zone of the BM “Tor-M2” SAM from a range of up to 90 km was introduced. Even before the target enters the BM detection zone (32 km), the operator can visually observe on the control panel screen the airborne reconnaissance data received through the battery command post from the radar of higher links. At the same time, the goals are pre-ranked according to the degree of danger, their flight time to the detection zone of SOC BM is determined. This significantly increases the possibility of intercepting airborne attacks at the far boundary of the affected area;
- the possibility of on-call information reception with the BM radio equipment turned off was provided. On the one hand, this increases the combat stability of combat vehicles: when radars are turned off, their detection is much more difficult, and guidance of anti-radar missiles (the most dangerous enemy of air defense systems) on them becomes impossible. On the other hand, this increases the effectiveness of combat work from an ambush: planes and helicopters "do not see" the BM and run the risk of entering its affected area;
- it became possible to increase from four to eight the number of BM in the subordination of one BKP. Four BMs are paired directly with the BKP, as before, each of which relays data to another remote BM. Due to the relaying and diversity of BM on the ground, the zone controlled by one BKP increases. Moreover, in a regiment or division it becomes possible to use only two BKP instead of four. With the existing staffing, this makes it possible to increase combat stability (due to the fact that all BM regiments can continue combat work even if two BKPs fail). By reducing the regiment’s staff by two BKPs, this provides significant cost savings. At the same time, pairing of eight BMs with one BKP is possible without software and structural modifications of BM equipment, and the protocol remains universal for new and previously released products;
- the number of radio channels was doubled, while the frequency range was significantly expanded, and the number of radio frequencies was reduced several times. Increased communication range with BKP from 5 to 10 km; pairing with BM early release, as well as data exchange in noise-protected and coded modes are saved.
A key element of the KSS is the control panel, which configures the communications equipment, displays the tactical situation and the estimated time of approach of the targets to the BM detection zone. In an emergency (in case of failure of the control panel and the automatic control system), the KSS configuration allows you to save (with limitations) the pairing of the BKP and BM.
Also, the updated communications kit allows the use of the Tor-M2 air defense missile defense system as a command vehicle for lower-level air defense systems. (more about this in relevant article).
The upgraded communications kit successfully completed state tests in May of this year.
The modernized communication equipment forms the promising appearance of the Tor-M2 air defense system and has been used in the production of air defense systems since 2020. Improving communication and control systems significantly increases the capabilities of air defense, allowing it to adequately respond to existing and future air threats.