In early July, domestic media reported on the conduct of regular tests in the framework of the C-500 project. This news says that the creation of a promising anti-aircraft missile system to protect the airspace of the country continues, and has already left the design stage. Thus, as follows from the published information, the project as a whole is proceeding on schedule, thanks to which the first C-500 complexes can be sent to the troops in 2017-18 years, as stated earlier.
On July 7, the ITAR-TASS news agency, citing an unnamed source in the defense industry, reported on the successful conduct of new tests as part of the C-500 development program. According to the source, at the end of June, long-range anti-aircraft missiles were tested. The details of these works were not announced, but the source noted that all the goals and objectives were successfully implemented. In addition, he stressed that the air defense concern "Almaz-Antey" is carrying out all the work on the project in full accordance with the established schedule.
The first reports of the development of a promising air defense system, designed over time to replace the S-300P and S-400 systems, appeared at the end of the last decade. A little later the possible name of the complex, Prometheus, was published in the press. Nevertheless, in some sources there is another designation of the project: "Triumfator-M". The goal of the S-500 Prometheus project is to create a new anti-aircraft missile system that can protect a given area from attacks using aviation and ballistic missiles.
There are not yet confirmed assumptions according to which the C-500 complex will be able to provide two-echelon air defense with the use of medium-range and long-range or ultra-long-range anti-aircraft missiles. In addition, the possibility of creating an air defense system with three echelons and corresponding ammunition is not excluded. A few years ago, in the domestic media, it was claimed that the C-500 complex was created on the basis of the C-400 project and would use some missiles designed for its predecessor.
At present, the Almaz-Antey Air Defense Concern is conducting tests of various systems and corrects the identified deficiencies. The command of the Space Forces announced at the very beginning of 500 about the start of testing of individual elements of the C-2011 complex. In the spring of 2012, there were reports of approximate completion dates for design work. At that time, it was intended to complete the design by the beginning of 2013. At the MAKS-2013 air show, Lieutenant-General Viktor Bondarev, the commander-in-chief of the aerospace defense forces, said that the delivery of new air defense systems to the troops would begin in 2018. A little later, the management of Almaz-Antey State Committee for Construction confirmed this information, noting that the development of the C-500 complex will end in the 2015 year.
For obvious reasons, the technical appearance of the Prometheus C-500 anti-aircraft complex is still a mystery. From time to time in the press and in discussions various information appears, however, it still does not allow for a complete picture and therefore compels to build various assumptions. Naturally, the demonstration of ready-made samples and the publication of their characteristics can refute most of the assumptions, but in the conditions of a shortage of information we have to be content with this.
Apparently, the new C-500 SAMs will have the same architecture as its predecessor, C-400. The complex will include a command post, a radar detection, radar control, launchers and several types of missiles. All ground facilities of the complex will be made on the basis of a wheeled chassis, probably the BAZ brand. Such an approach to the design of the anti-aircraft system will simplify operation, as well as to some extent facilitate the development of new technology.
It is possible that the Prometheus C-500 complex will use some missiles designed for C-400. First of all, it is a rocket of superlarge range 40H6. This product is capable of striking aerodynamic targets at ranges up to 400 km and therefore can remain an effective means of air defense for a long time. Nevertheless, new missiles are being developed for the new air defense system. Probably, the tests that took place at the end of June were intended to test the operation of any promising missiles. In this case, the range of developed ammunition, as well as their characteristics, remain unknown.
The latest news can serve as confirmation that the long-range missile will be included in the C-500 complex. It will probably be a new ammunition designed specifically for a promising anti-aircraft missile system. The product index is still unknown, the characteristics also remain secret. Nevertheless, the news of the beginning of July to some extent complement the existing picture, although they do not reveal all the details of the project.
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