MOSCOW, January 15 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will restore the complete radar coverage of its western borders when a new radar facility in the southern town of Armavir becomes fully operational by mid-2010, the Space Forces commander said.
The Armavir radar will be the second facility, after the Lekhtusi complex in the Leningrad Region, to close a gap in radar coverage on Russia's western borders after the closure of radar sites in Skrunda (Latvia) in late 1998 and recently in Mukachevo and Sevastopol, in western Ukraine.
"The facilities in Armavir and Lekhtusi will ensure the complete radar coverage on the relevant directions that could pose a missile threat," Maj. Gen. Oleg Ostapenko told reporters in Moscow.
The general later clarified that the new Voronezh-DM class radars would monitor missile trajectories and probable directions for a missile attack in northwestern and southwestern Russia.
With an effective range of 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) the Voronezh class radar has capabilities similar to its predecessors, the Dnepr and Daryal, which are currently deployed by Russia in Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, but uses less energy and is more environmentally friendly.
The Lekhtusi missile early warning radar outside St. Petersburg became operational in December last year, while the Armavir facility is still in the testing phase.