Pantsir missile/gun AD system Thread: #2
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I think this tendency Russia is having of splitting the systems into separate vehicles is a mistake.
A bit ironic that you say that because they (Soviets) are the only ones that integrated systems from multiple vehicles to make them mobile and independent... from separate tracking and search radar for SA-6 batteries to separate search radar but tracking radar and optical guidance backup for SA-11 and SA-17 and newer models.
The Tunguska made sense because it took what was used before that... SA-9/13 missile vehicles, plus air defence gun system Shilka and greatly improved the performance of both systems... from 5km range IR guided missiles with no search or tracking radar capacity, to SA-19 command guided missiles with a range of 8km and then 10kms with a search and tracking radar and 8 missiles ready to fire, while the guns increased effective range from 2km with the four 23mm cannon to 4km with two twin barrel 30mm cannon with a higher rate of fire and separate search and tracking radar.
The Tunguska was more expensive than either the SA-13 or Shilka, but it was not more expensive than an SA-13 vehicle using SA-19 missiles and the search and tracking radars they would need to be effective togethe with a Shilka vehicle with 30mm cannon and search and tracking radar too.
Combining the missiles and the guns made sense because each weapon complimented the other and did not overlap performance very much, while allowing the shared use of radar. The split radar with search and tracking radar meant even when engaging a target it could continue to scan for other threats and targets which is rather better too.
The point is that the radar was originally needed by the guns for accuracy and detecting targets in time, but there is a significant advantage in using a much bigger AESA radar antenna.... especially against tiny drone targets and targets out to the 40-50km the missiles can reach now.
The point is that the radars are different now the 2S38 does not need the same search and tracking radars the missiles require, they can be smaller and much cheaper... comparable to a small portable battlefield radar to track out going shells and the location of the target to manouver the outgoing round and set off the warhead at the optimal time.
The missiles need a target tracking radar to follow the target and outgoing missiles and to send flight commands to the missiles to guide them in flight.
The search radar could be used for a range of uses and platforms... it looks big enough to be useful for BUK and S-350 batteries as well...
The point is that splitting them up means they can be used together or individually and they don't all use full search and tracking radars so you are not duplicating that cost.
Modern missiles can shoot down HARMs and bombs so the threat to the central radar are less and so the radar can be placed in optimal positions to reduce blind spots while missile and gun vehicles can be placed in locations with better fields of fire... and the missile and gun and jammer and laser combination can be catered to the situation... lots of tiny enemy drones might need more lasers and airburst 57mm guns or perhaps 30mm airburst shells. Hell you might even add some Kornet vehicles to hit drones flying high... the HE warhead model KORNET-EM can hit targets at 10km altitude... and are cheap laser beam riding missiles you can use against targets with zero IR or radar signature.... you just need to be able to see them.
However what I think is happening is Russia now considers Pantsir as an air defense system exclusively for doing things like doing short range air defense for S-400. While Tor being the mobile one. The idea of having two highly integrated mobile systems which compete against each other is going away basically.
Making them wheel based would massively reduce operational costs and improve availability and also purchase price.... the missiles and shells would be relatively affordable too, but I would think this version of Pantsir and the 57mm 2S38 are intended to replace the Tunguska with something that can fire on the move and is very mobile... I would think both new model pantsir and tor will be able to fire on the move and will have increased numbers of ready to fire missiles
Another factor of course is that these new heavier longer ranged Pantsir missiles probably match in size and compatibility with Hermes for engaging ground targets too, so extra vehicles that seem to be air defence vehicles might actually have a long range anti surface capacity too (100km).
Since most helicopters and relatively cheap drones like TB-2 or Reaper can hit targets at 8km range with Hellfire or equivalent any system with less range is useless against basically everything except small drones and civilian vehicles.
Having good weapon range does not equate to being safe... even Kornet-EM can hit targets at 10km including helicopters... SOSNA = 10km, Pantsir is minimum 10km and more likely three to four times more than that in different models... even TOR is 12km in the original models and 15km in current missiles.
The only missiles with less than 8km range would be MANPADS and possibly those new tiny self defence missiles they are developing, and also possibly Bulat but we can't be sure of the latter. It will have a much smaller lighter warhead but being narrower and of a similar length it might retain the speed and range of the Kornet in the HE warhead equipped model.
Even so such shorter ranged missiles would be dangerous... a missile like Kornet or Ataka or Shturm is probably more dangerous for western helicopters than a heat seeker because DIRCMS would deal with a heat seeker but not supersonic command guided or laser beam riding missiles.
Russia is working through their defence systems against HATO weapons and seems to be done rather well... not sure HATO would cope as well even with the Russian AD and AT weapons of the 1980s let alone today.
The idea of having guns to shoot down unarmed or gun armed helicopters is kind of gone at this point. And like you guys said can be done with other vehicles with 57mm cannon like new T-15 Armata.
Actually guns are fully dual purpose and up until recently were commonly used by the Russians for convoy anti ambush, or base defence or for dealing with hard targets in COIN ops... and as shown in Syria the effective range of modern light auto cannon and its effect on ground targets can be frighteningly effective.
They remain cheaper and are different enough from missiles to make them worth having as well.
30mm is fading into history I guess, the very same way 23 mm was gone.
It lacks the range and space to make it programmable and lethal at the same time.
To be fair 23mm is still used in towed twin guns and also on Hind helicopters in a different cartridge.... the main reason the 23mm has faded is because the 30mm replaced it, but I don't think 57mm will replace it quite so extensively even though there are two 57mm weapons to replace the 30mm.
With command detonation fuses the air burst 30mm rounds should actually be very cheap and the guns designed to launch them on land and at sea throw them out in numbers at very high rates of fire so a burst of air bursting shells will shower the target in fragments that would be devastating against smaller lighter targets like drones. Ironically a target like a Hokum could probably survive the fragments of a nearby exploding 30mm cannon shell, so 57mm rounds would be useful too for air defence, but against cruise missiles or light drones 30mm would still be very effective.
Systems armed with it will be outgunned by not only the attack helos, but light drones, leaving all the job to missiles anyway.
The decision to go with 57mm was based on two core things... the shot density of the 30mm was not good enough for small targets like drones or cruise missiles without expensive air burst ammo, and the relatively short range of 4km made the vehicles vulnerable to most weapons carried by helicopters today... and the second thing was that the armour penetration of a round small enough to fit into the 30 x 165mm round was never going to be propelled to velocities that would make enemy IFVs vulnerable at normal combat ranges.
Interestingly the solution was a 57mm grenade launcher/APFSDS round and the 57mm gun of the 2S38 based on the AA gun round.
The HE bomb of the 57mm grenade launcher is huge and command detonation AB makes it very very capable against a range of targets.
Equally the round itself is much more voluminous than the 30 x 165mm round so a very long penetrator with lots of propellent means very capable APFSDS round...
And pay attention to the part, where they are removing a radar station.
Does this mean the optical/IR/IIR is just fine where it was?
It is going to be part of an IADS network so the search radar function either comes from an actual search radar vehicle operating with the unit or such information could come from an A-100/-50 or other nearby unit using its radar but with a TOR vehicle because it is emitting radar and might be subject to attack... the TOR will defend the search radar, while the search radar provides target data for units operating all over the area.
The EO systems can probably find and target small low RCS and low IR targets like drones.
Now, they are filling this gap and making a space for a more specialized barrel system, which I consider a black horse of this race. Iranians are really a benchmark for antidrone warfare, as they pioneered with them long, long time ago.
To be fair we have heard about 100mm AA guns in Iran but there is no evidence of their use or indication of actual effectiveness.
To be honest I would say if you want to go that way the dumbest thing you can do is make a specialised round from a specialised calibre... like the French did with their 142mm gun tube launched missile or the US did with their 152mm gun tube launched missile... the french cancelled their programme but the US continued and ended up with a useless gun and a missile that looked good on paper but in use was useless and expensive and the other ammo the gun fired was worse than useless.
If Russia was going for a large calibre anti aircraft gun you want a gun with good angles of fire and the ability to turn 360 degrees and is already in use... so the 2S35 Coalition with 152mm shells would be a sensible place to start with guided shells etc etc.
30mm is a little small for command fuses, but could still work, 57mm is too large for combination systems on land, perhaps we will see the return of 45mm.
No, the 30mm rounds were the first to get command detonation fuses... they were going to get laser fuses but the risk of rain or snow or humidity or cloud or fog or smoke getting in the way led to command signals.
And we have already seen the 2S38 air defence vehicle with the 57mm cannon for air defence...
HD on youtbue
Nice.... so there are two Pantsir vehicles.... one with all missiles and the tracking radar and EO, and a second vehicle with a search radar and EO and less missiles and 30mm cannon.
Don't speak Russian but the video showed drones flying in groups and then showed a large number of birds which highlights one of the problems with drones that they can be operated amongst birds so when you are tracking targets you need to differentiate from robots and animals unless you want to waste a lot of ammo on the local wildlife.
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That launch vehicle with 24 missiles could carry half with these and half with standard missiles meaning 48 of these small missiles and 12 standard sized 40km range missiles for a total of 60 ready to fire missiles... or if it was known the threat was all drones then 24 x 4 = 96 missiles ready to fire per vehicle...
That missile on the wall appears to be Vikhr...
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Image Source: Anton Tushin
This November marks the tenth anniversary of the introduction into service of one of the most successful developments of the Tula Instrument Design Bureau of recent years - the Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile and gun system. The system is supplied to the Russian troops and abroad, and is constantly being upgraded.
The marine version of Pantsir-ME inherited all the advantages of the base product and has recently been mass-produced for installation on ships of the Russian Navy. About why the "Pantsir" is called a unique air defense missile system, and what are the features of the marine modification - in our material.
On November 4, 2012, by order of the Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation D.A. Medvedev ZRPK "Pantsir-S1" was adopted by the Russian Armed Forces. This was preceded by a long period of development and testing, which fell on the 1990s - a time of crisis in the history of the country's military-industrial complex. The main task of the "Pantsir" is the short-range cover of various military and civilian objects from attacks by any modern means of air attack, including UAVs.
The uniqueness of the complex lies in the placement of means of detecting and destroying targets on one platform, due to which a security dome with a radius of tens of kilometers is created over the protected object with small resources. In addition, "Shells" are able to unite in groups, increasing the protective coating.
The Pantsir-S1 complex can be placed on a tracked and wheeled chassis, as well as installed permanently. The fire is carried out by two double-barreled 30-mm cannons and 12 surface-to-air anti-aircraft guided missiles. A phased array radar (PAR) is responsible for target detection. The radar accompanies both the targets and the launched missiles of the complex.
The most modern modification of the Pantsir-S1M complex, first presented at the Army-2021 forum, is capable of detecting air targets at a distance of up to 80 km. Thanks to the new missile and the updated radar with mm-range PAR, the effective range has been increased to 30 km. The firepower of the Pantsir-S1M is achieved by a combination of rocket and cannon weapons, high reaction speed and the ability to search for and destroy targets on the move.
"Armor" for sea wolves
In 2015, KBP specialists developed a naval version of the weapon based on the Pantsir-S model. For the first time in our country, the Pantsir-ME complex was shown at the St. Petersburg International Naval Show in 2017, and two years later, abroad at an exhibition in Abu Dhabi.
The main difference between the marine model is in armament. On Pantsir-ME, instead of two double-barreled guns, two 30-mm six-barreled machine guns are installed, which made it possible to approximately double the rate of fire. The number of missiles has become less - 8 versus 12 on the land version, but at the same time, another 32 missiles are stored under deck.
The missiles are adapted to work on surface targets, which most often fly at a low altitude of 2 m, while the maximum engagement height is 15 km, and the distance is 20 km. Heavy fire from machine guns destroys closer and smaller objects at a distance of up to 4 km and a height of up to 3 km. Pantsir-ME can fire at four targets at once.
The complex uses a highly intelligent multi-mode adaptive radar-optical control system. Only two people are responsible for the work of the marine "Shell" - the operator and commander of the combat module, while the complex has a high level of automation. The combination of radar and optical systems allows the complex to be used in any conditions, including at night.
Small rocket ship "Odintsovo". Photo: Rosoboronexport The complex can be installed on ships of various classes with a displacement of 300 tons, including foreign-made ones, which opens up wide export prospects for it.
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A new anti-aircraft missile regiment with Pantsir-S complexes was formed in Khakassia
The ceremony of taking up combat duty took place on the parade ground of the military unit
EKATERINBURG, December 1. /TASS/. A new regiment equipped with Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile and gun systems has been formed in Khakassia. The personnel took up combat duty, the press service of the Central Military District (CVO) reported on Thursday.
"The solemn ceremony of taking up combat duty of the newly formed anti-aircraft missile regiment took place on the parade ground of a military unit in the Republic of Khakassia. <...> The personnel of the military unit will be on combat duty for the air defense of the region," the report says.
The solemn event was attended by the acting commander of the Air Force and Air Defense of the Central Military District, Colonel Gennady Shlag, members of the republican government, representatives of veterans and public organizations of the region.
On December 21, 2021, the commander of the Central Military District, Alexander Lapin, announced the formation of a regiment in 2022 following the results of the collegium of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.
The Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile and gun system is designed for air defense of small-sized military and administrative-industrial facilities and areas from aircraft, helicopters, cruise missiles and high-precision weapons, as well as for strengthening air defense groups when repulsing massive air strikes. The armament of the complex includes two 30-mm double-barreled 2A38M anti-aircraft guns, as well as 12 anti-aircraft guided missiles ready for launch.
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