Defective missile shields

The US and Russia are trying to frighten each other with non-existent missile defense systems.
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On June 7, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said that the Russian defense industry had offered the Defense Ministry a variant of a missile defense system that would protect all of Russia from air attacks. Earlier, at the end of May, the Pentagon conducted a successful test of its GMD system - it was the first time
Not only to detect, but also to bring down in space "an object with the characteristics of an intercontinental ballistic missile."

Our Version understood whether Russia would become immune to missile strikes and whether the domestic missile defense system would surpass the American model. As promised by Dmitry Rogozin, after the completion of the Unified Space System, the country will be closed by a continuous anti-missile dome. According to him, the new version of the anti-missile "umbrella" will consist of ground and space echelons - in detail the plan of the system is not disclosed because of increased secrecy, therefore experts are not taken to evaluate its prospects. At the same time, analysts who are familiar with the state of the national defense complex note that in the field of development and application of missile defense we have good technical and technological reserves. The basis for them is the Soviet projects, once closed due to lack of funds and now experiencing reopening.

Russia has nothing to shoot down missiles

Until recently, the main problem for the Russian missile defense system was a catastrophic lack of detection capabilities. After the collapse of the USSR, less than half of the radar warning system for missile attacks remained on the territory of Russia. We managed to patch up the gaps only this year, when three radar stations of the new generation of the Voronezh type were put on combat duty - in Barnaul, Orsk and Yeniseysk. At present, there are seven such stations in Russia, previously objects were put on alert duty in the Leningrad and Kaliningrad regions, as well as in Armavir and Usolye-Sibirskoe. Thus, for the first time around the perimeter of Russia's borders, it was possible to create a continuous radar field of the missile attack warning system. According to the military, thanks to this, every launch of a ballistic missile or spacecraft at a distance of 6,000 kilometers from the borders is now monitored. Now duplicating systems are being created: the new-generation radar "Voronezh-DM" deployed in the Krasnoyarsk Territory, will enter combat duty until the end of 2017; Work has begun on the creation of a radar station in the Vorkuta region and in the Murmansk region. A grouping of satellites is also being created that will be able to track missile launch in any part of the globe.

However, if the situation has significantly improved with missile launch detection systems, then it remains ambiguous with the defeat systems, since so far new samples are only being developed. In December of last year, the successful tests of a promising interceptor missile "Nudol" were announced. Apparently, this missile is part of the complex of anti-missile and anti-space defense A-235, which will replace the current system of AMD A-135 "Amur", designed to protect Moscow from the attacks of ballistic intercontinental missiles.

In addition, the military hopes the new generation of S-500 "Prometheus" anti-aircraft missile systems. According to the developers, the C-500 will become a universal complex of long-range action and high-altitude interception with a radius of 600 kilometers. If this system achieves the declared characteristics - and there are promises that the S-500 will be capable of simultaneously striking up to 10 ballistic missiles flying at speeds of up to 7 kilometers per second - then this SAM really will become a reliable instrument for the new Russian missile defense system. However, for the time being these are only plans.

Experts believe that the idea of creating a Russian ABM dome could be borrowed from Americans who, since the late 1990s, have been forming a Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system designed to destroy intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in space. The principle of the system is as follows: a network of stationary radar stations, consisting of ground-based PAVE PAWS and mobile offshore SBX, detects an ICBM, after which the GMD launches a missile-interceptor for a mine-based interceptor. The first elements of the GMD were deployed in 2004, at the moment there are 32 missiles at Fort-Greeley in Alaska and 4 in Vandenberg in California, 8 more are planned to be commissioned by the end of this year. Critics of the system in the US themselves call GMD the most complex and at the same time the most unreliable ABM system. Since 1999, 17 launches have been carried out to defeat training objectives, and only 9 of them have ended in success. The main problems arose with the interception of missiles in the nearest space.

However, on May 30, the Americans had an occasion for optimism. On that day, the GMD system successfully intercepted an intercontinental ballistic missile in space. According to experts, the interception of ICBMs in space is indeed a huge achievement, because for the first time it was possible to solve the most complicated technical problem - to get to a small target at a great distance at giant counter speeds.

However, Russian experts urge not to dramatize the situation, since the US missile defense system is able to protect only a limited territory. Therefore, today the task of a maximum of such systems is to minimize the consequences of either a single or an unintentional launch. However, the main thing is still different: according to experts, today no country in the world can create a continuous system of anti-missile defense, capable of covering completely the country's territory and resisting a mass missile attack. The reason for this is the high cost of creating such an umbrella - for example, the cost of a single launch of the US EKV anti-missile system is about $ 70 million, and thousands of such missiles will be required to guarantee protection against attack. Such costs are too high even for Americans, who in this connection continue to look for ways to create a less expensive, but more reliable system for intercepting enemy missiles. What can we say about Russia, whose military budget is much smaller. Thus, Dmitry Rogozin's statement about the development of an anti-missile dome by domestic scientists can hardly be a reason for enthusiasm - if in theory the ABM system is available, then its implementation remains a big question in practice.

Alexander GORKOV, former chief of anti-aircraft missile forces of the Russian Air Force:

- Today, the development of missile defense systems in the US and Russia is proceeding in parallel. At the same time, it is rather difficult to say who is in the leaders, since this topic is rather closed in both countries. It is also difficult to understand what Dmitry Rogozin meant when he announced that a missile defense system would be created that could close the whole of Russia with a missile dome. Indeed, today, the system of warning about the attack is being actively restored, which allows detecting missile launches. However, the weapons that are capable of destroying ballistic missiles are located near Moscow and close to a number of important strategic targets. With existing technologies, it is almost impossible to cover the whole of Russia's space from aviation and missile strikes, primarily for financial reasons. If we talk about prospective missile defense systems, then such a system must first be created, tested, and then adopted and maintained in a state of combat readiness, all this will require a lot of resources. Today they say that new SAMs are being created, for example, the S-500, which will be able to carry out such a task, but so far this is only a remote perspective. The S-500s are just under construction, it's unclear what characteristics they will have and when they are adopted.