Analysis: List of new air defense capabilities of Ukrainian army after donation by EU and US
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Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has requested the United States and European countries to provide modern air defense systems to strengthen the protection of the Ukrainian territory from drones and missile attacks by the Russian armed forces. Army Recognition editorial team details the list of new air defense capabilities of Ukrainian armed forces after the donation of weapons by the United States and allied countries.
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Analysis: New air defense capabilities of the Ukrainian armed forces after the donation of the United States and allied countries.
Before the war in Ukraine, the Ukrainian armed forces were equipped with Russian-made air defense systems including S-300 PS, S-300V (SA-12A Gladiator) for long-range, 9K330 Tor-M (SA-15 Gauntlet), 9K35 Strela-10 (SA-13 Gopher), 9K33 Osa-AKM (SA-8 Gecko)and 2K22 Tunguska (SA-19 Grison), 9K37M Buk-M1 (SA-11 Gadfly) and S-125 Pechora (SA-3 Goa).
The short-range air defense systems of Ukrainian armed forces also included ZSU-23-4 Shilka self-propelled anti-aircraft gun system and towed anti-aircraft gun systems ZU-23-2 and S-60.
The S-300V 9K81 (NATO code Sa-12 Gladiator/Giant) is a Russian-made air defense missile system mounted on a tracked armored vehicle. There are two variants of launcher unit, the 9A83 (SA-12a Gladiator) with four missile container-launcher tubes and the 9A82 (SA-12b Giant) with two missile container-launcher tubes.
The 9M83 missile of the S-300V is designed to counter weapons employed to deliver dense attacks. It is highly effective against any type of existing and prospective aircraft at ranges of up to 75 km, against SRAM-type aero-ballistic missiles, tactical ballistic missiles of the Lance type at ranges of up to 40 km, and against nap-of-the-earth cruise missiles.
9K330 Tor-M (SA-15 Gauntlet)
The TOR-M1 9A331-1, NATO code designation SA-15 Gauntlet) is a mobile, integrated surface-to-air defense missile system designed and manufactured by the Russian Defence Industry. The vehicle is fitted with a turret that is equipped with a top-mounted target acquisition radar, a frontal tracking radar, and 8 ready-to-fire 9M330 or 9M331 missiles stored vertically between the two radars.
The engagement range of the Tor-M missile is up to 12 km with a minimum range varying between 100 - 2,000 m, depending upon version, and an effective altitude of 10 - 6,000 m.
9K35 Strela-10 (SA-13 Gopher)
The SA-13 GOPHER or 9K35 Strela-10 is a short-range SAM (Surface-to-Air) system. The SA-13 is designed to defend troops on the march from low-altitude aircraft and helicopters, precision-guided munitions, and reconnaissance RPVs (Remotely Piloted Vehicles). Four missiles are mounted on the turret in boxes, ready to launch, and eight more are carried inside the vehicle as reloads. Reloading takes around 3 minutes. The launcher pedestal mounted to the rear of the center of the vehicle is 360º traversable.
The maximum speed of the missile is near Mach 2, the engagement range is from 500 to 5000 m (0.3–3 miles) and the engagement altitude is between 10 and 3500 m (33-11,500 ft). For its self-protection, a 7,62 mm machine gun is mounted to the hatch of the commander position.
9K35 Strela-10 SA-13 Gopher
9K33 Osa-AKM (SA-8 Gecko)
The SA-8 Gecko NATO code name (Russian name 9K33 OSA) is a Russian-made highly mobile, low-altitude, short-range tactical surface-to-air missile system. is armed with 6 missiles ready to fire, mounted on the roof of the vehicle. The missile is tracked by a radio-command guiding system. The Loading platform can carry from 2 to 6 guided missiles.
The engagement range for the SA-8 Gecko missile is approximately 2–9 km and engagement altitudes of between 50–5000 m. The 9M33M2 "Osa-A" missile extends the ranges out to 1,500 - 10,000m and engagement altitudes to 25 – 5,000 m. The 9M33M3 missile greatly enhances the altitude engagement envelope to 10 – 12,000 m, and as such are also able to fly further (about 15 km/9 miles) but the system is not able to engage targets at longer ranges, due to other factors such as the radar tracking of the missiles.
9K33 SA-8 Gecko
2K22 Tunguska (SA-19 Grison)
The 2S6 Tunguska 2K22 (NATO code SA-19 Grison) is a Russian-made self-propelled air defense system that combines gun and missile armament. The turret of the 2S6M Tunguska is mounted in the center of the chassis and armed with two 30mm 2A38 twin cannons, one to each side of the turret. Mounted outwards and below the 30 mm cannon is a bank of four 9M311 SAMs (Surface-to-Air Missile) in two blocks of two, which can elevate vertically independently of each other.
The 9M311 can engage aerial targets with altitudes between 15 and 3,500 m and from 2,400 to 8,000 m in slant range with the target having a maximum speed of 500 m/s. Russian sources quote the crossover range as being up to 4,000 m.
9K37M Buk-M1 (SA-11 Gadfly)
The BUK-M1 (NATO code: SA-11 Gadfly) missile system is a self-propelled, medium-range surface-to-air missile system developed by the Russian defense industry. The SA-11 Gadfly is intended to defeat tactical and strategic aircraft, cruise missiles, helicopters and other aerodynamic targets throughout the entire range of their combat employment in severe ECM environments, as well as Lance-type tactical ballistic missile, HARM-type antiradar missiles and other airborne and ground-based high precision weapons and to engage waterborne and radio-contrast ground targets.
The SA-11 Gadfly is essentially a tracked chassis that carries a radar and a launcher with four missiles. The radar fitted to each SA-11 Gadfly is referred to as the 'Fire Dome' by NATO, it is a monopulse type radar and can begin tracking at the missile's maximum range (32 km/20 mi) and can track aircraft flying at between 15,000 and 22,000 m (50,000 to 72,000 ft) altitudes. It can guide up to three missiles against a single target.
S-125 Pechora (SA-3 Goa)
The SA-3 Goa (Russian name S-125 Neva) system began development in 1956 as a low- to medium-altitude complement to the larger S-25/R-113 (SA-1), S-75 (SA-2) and S-200 (SA-5) medium- to high-altitude surface-to-air missile systems.
The S-125 system uses 2 different missile versions. The V-600 (or 5V24) had the smallest warhead with only 60 kg of High-Explosive. It had a range of about 15 km.
The ZSU-23-4 nicknamed "Shilka" is a Russian-made lightly armored, self-propelled, radar guided anti-aircraft weapon system (SPAAG). The Shilka was developed in the early 1960's and was first seen in public during a parade in Moscow in November 1965.
The main armament is composed of four AZP-23 23 mm canons with an elevation of +85° to - 4°, and 360° turret traverse. It has the capability to both acquire and track low-flying aircraft targets, with an effective AA (Anti-Aircraft) range of 2,500 m.
The ZU-23-2, also known as ZU-23, is a Russian-made towed 23 mm anti-aircraft twin-barreled automatic cannon. It entered into service with the Soviet Army in 1960. the gun system is often mounted on trucks or armored vehicles for use in both anti-aircraft and fire support roles.
The ZU-23-2 is armed with two 2A14 23 mm autocannons on a small trailer which can be converted into a stationary mount for firing the guns. The anti-aircraft gun system is able to engage low-flying targets at a range of 2.5 km as well as armored vehicles at a range of 2 km and for direct defense of troops and strategic locations against air assault usually conducted by helicopters and low-flying airplanes.
The S-60 is a Russian-made 57mm anti-aircraft gun designed by the Central Design Bureau and introduced in 1950 as the replacement for the older 37-mm M1939 anti-aircraft gun. The S-60 is designed to provide defense against aircraft and helicopters, and can also be used against lightly armored ground vehicles in a ground support role.
The S-60 uses a single barrel 57mm caliber. The original S-60 had a long thin barrel capped by a multi-perforated muzzle brake. The anti-aircraft S-60 can fire a full range of ammunition as the FRAG-T and APCT-T. According to some Russian sources, the S-60 can also fire ammunition HEI-T (High Explosive) and API-T (Armour Piercing). The gun has an effective firing range of 4 km as a standalone weapon and 6 km with fire control. In real combat conditions, the S-60 can engage aerial targets with a range from 0.5 to 1.5 km and has a firing range of up to 3 km against land targets.
S-60 57mm anti-aircraft gun
To date, the Ukrainian army now has several air defense systems provided by the international community with a mixture of materials of Russian origin from the former Warsaw Pact countries. The United States and several European countries have delivered more modern air defense systems to respond to new threats such as drones and missiles.
Gepard from Germany
The Gepard also nicknamed Cheetah, is a self-propelled anti-aircraft cannon that was developed by the German company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) between 1976 and 1980
It is fitted with a two-man turret armed with two Oerlikon Contraves 35 mm KDA cannons which have a cyclic rate of fire of 550 rds/min. One 35mm cannon is mounted externally on either side of the turret and the anti-aircraft ammunition is fed via fixed and moving chutes which are hermetically sealed from the fighting compartment. The cannons have a maximum firing range of 5,500 m with FAPDS ammunition. The vehicle can detect aerial targets at a range of up to 15 km.
Gepard 35mm self-propelled anti-aircraft gun system
S-300 PMU from Slovakia
The first export variant of the S-300P long-range air defense missile system series was the S-300PMU/SA-10C, which was in most respects identical to the Russian S-300PS/SA-10B. It was introduced in 1992 for the export market.
The 5P85TE it's four paired missile container launchers mounted to the rear of the semi-trailer, thus avoiding the need to uncouple the tractor unit, hence considerably reducing the time needed to deploy the system.
The S-300 PMU uses the missile Fakel 5V55RUD. It can engage aerial targets at a range of up to 90 km. Altitude limits are 10 to 27,000 m with a target velocity up to 1,200 m/s.
S-300PMU long-range air defense missile system
Stormer HVMs from UK
The Alvis Stormer is a mobile air defense system based on an improved tracked chassis of the CVRT, a family of reconnaissance armored vehicles in service with the British army.
The HVM weapon station is armed with two blocks of four Starstreak missiles ready to fire. Another batch of 12 missiles is stored in the vehicle. The roof of the vehicle is fitted with an air defense alerting device (ADAD), supplied by Thales (formerly Pilkington) Optronics. µ
The Starstrek is a surface-to-air missile that launches three laser beam-riding submunitions, increasing the likelihood of a successful hit on the target. The missile is designed to destroy aerial targets such as helicopters and high-speed ground attack aircraft. It has a maximum firing range of 7 km.
Alvis Stormer HVM mobile air defense missile system
IRIS-T SLM from Germany
The IRIS-T SLM is the medium-range version of the IRIS-T SL air defense missile system designed and produced by the German company Diehl Defense. The system provides comprehensive 360° protection against aircraft, helicopters, cruise missiles, and guided weapons
The missile has the capability to destroy aircraft, helicopters, cruise missiles, air-to-surface missiles, anti-ship missiles, anti-radar rockets, and large-caliber rockets. it also has a high probability of a killing shot against UAVs and other small maneuvering threats. It has a maximum firing range of 40 km at an altitude of up to 20 km.
IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system
NASAMS from US
NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System) is a medium to long-range air defense missile system designed and manufactured by the Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace teamed up with Raytheon from the United States for the missile.
The NASAMS is equipped with three multi-missile launchers (LCHR), each carrying up to six ready-to-fire missiles inside the protective canisters. The purpose of the NASAMS Multi-Missile Launcher is to transport, aim and fire missiles with different characteristics, all mounted on the same launch rail inside the protective canisters.
The NASAMS can fire the high-velocity AIM-120 missile as well as the AIM-9-X Sidewinder and the RIM-162 – ESSM. The missile is able to hit targets at a range of up to 40 km and at a height of up to 14 km.
NASAMS Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System
Aspide from Spain
The Aspide is a medium-range air-to-air and surface-to-air missile that was produced by the Italian company Selenia. Spain ordered 200 Aspide missiles in 1985 that were delivered in 1987-1989 as part of a $230 m deal for 6 Spada SAM systems. In 1996, 51 Aspide 2000 were ordered and delivered in 1997-1999 for the Spada 2000 SAM (Surface to Air Missile) systems.
The Spada is an all-weather air defense missile that is able to launch the Aspide 2000 missile which has a maximum firing range of 20 km.
Aspide air defense missile system
Crotale NG from France
In the French army, the Crotale NG is based on a 6x6 trailer which is equipped with a weapon station armed with two blocks of four ready-to-fire container launchers that can fire the VT1 missile designed to destroy aerial targets at short range. It is equipped with a multi-sensor suite, including passive electro-optics and radar with built-in Electronic Counter Countermeasures (ECCM) to engage airborne targets under adverse conditions of dense electronic warfare and hostile battlefield environments of nuclear, biological, and chemical warfare (NBC) and smoke and dust screens.
The Crotale NG missile is able to intercept aerial threats including tactical missiles, helicopters, UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Systems), and aircraft deploying high-maneuvering, low-level stand-off weapons. The missile has a maximum firing range of 11 km.
Crotale NG air defense missile system
MIM-23 Hawk from Spain and US
The HAWK is a semi-active radar-seeking medium-range surface-to-air defense missile system that was developed in 1952 with the US Army awarding a full-scale development contract to Raytheon for the missile in July 1954.
The Hawk donated by Spain to Ukraine is the MIM-23B version which has a minimum engagement range of 1.5 kilometers, a maximum range of 35 km, a minimum engagement altitude of 60 meters, a maximum engagement altitude of 18,000 m, and a warhead of 75 kg HE blast/fragmentation.
MIM-23 Hawk air defense missile system
AN/TWQ-1 Avenger US
The Avenger AN/TWQ-1 Air Defense System vehicle is a missile-mounted system that provides mobile, short-range air defense protection for ground units against cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, low-flying fixed-wing aircraft, and helicopters.
The baseline configuration of the Avenger AN/TWQ-1 consists of a gunner’s turret with missile pods mounted on each side. Each missile pod, called the standard vehicle-mounted launcher, can hold four FIM-92 Stinger missiles that can be removed and fired in the MANPAD employment configuration. The missile has an outward targeting range of up to 4,800 m and can engage low-altitude enemy threats at up to 3,800 m.
AN/TWQ-1 Avenger short-range air defense missile system
ItK 61 Finland
The ItK 61 is a modified version of the Soviet-made 23 mm anti-aircraft gun system ZU-23-2. It is equipped with a gyrostabilized sight and a laser range finder.
The ZU-23-2 is armed with two 2A14 23 mm automatic cannons on a small trailer which can be converted into a stationary mount for firing the guns. It can engage aerial targets at a range from 1,500 to 2,000 m.
iTk 61 anti-aircraft 23mm gun system
Zastava M55 Serbia
The Zastava M55, also designated 20/3-mm-M55, is a Yugoslavian/Serbian 20mm triple-barreled automatic anti-aircraft gun developed in 1955 and produced by Crvena Zastava (now Zastava Arms company) in Kragujevac, Serbia.
The Zastava M55 has an effective firing range of 4,000 m against aerial threats and 5,500 m when the weapon is used to destroy land targets.
Zastava M55 triple-barreled automatic anti-aircraft gun
Zastava M75 Serbia
The M20 single-barreled 75-mm anti-aircraft gun was created in the 50s on the basis of a licensed copy of the Hispano-Suiza HS.20 single-barreled 804-mm anti-aircraft automatic gun, produced in Yugoslavia.
The Zastava M75 can be used against land and aerial targets with a maximum firing range of 1,500 m.
Zastava M75 single-barreled 75-mm anti-aircraft gun