Recently, a Ukrainian official said that the Russian military is attacking ground targets in Ukraine with its S-300 long-range surface-to-air missile.
Vitaliy Kim, the governor of Ukraine’s Mykolaiv province, claimed on Twitter that the Russian Army regularly carries out “missile strikes” and employs S-300 missiles that are GPS-equipped to attack ground targets.
To reach targets on the ground, 12 S-300 missiles were launched, according to Mr. Kim. However, he also claimed that despite the missiles’ GPS guidance system, they are not firing precisely.
The S-300 version employed by Russian forces for ground attacks was not made explicit by Kim. The S-300P series is reported to be used by both Russia and Ukraine.
Although this may surprise and few people know, the S-300 air defense system can destroy enemy targets. Target on the ground. However, in the past, the Russian military has never used the S-300 for ground attack purposes.
There are documents on cases of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles used by the Russian military for ground attack tests in the air defense systems. Combat training. Even the Belarusian Army has practiced using the S-300 system to attack fixed targets on the ground.
Previously, Russia’s Southern Military District also mentioned the S-300’s ground attack capability in one press release on the 2011 tactical exercise of the aerospace brigade (VKO) at the Ashuluk training ground in the Astrakhan region.
The combat crews of the S-300 air defense system made 14 launches of guided missiles, hitting the targets. Kaban-2 and Pishchal at long distances and ground targets in fixed situation conditions. SMD said in a press release in August 2011. Two months later, more detailed information on the S-300’s ground attack role was provided by Naviny; According to the report, “Soviet engineers incorporated the ability to strike fixed targets on the ground into the design of the S-300 air defense missile when this defense system entered service.
When destroying air targets, the S-300PS version of the S-300 system, which was in use in Belarus at the time and included 5V55R missiles with a maximum range of up to 90 km, was equipped with the system. When destroying land targets, the 5V55R missile may travel a maximum distance of 120 kilometers. Most S-300 missiles use inertial guidance; target coordinates are automatically loaded onto the missile and updated via a radio link while in flight.
The S-300 system’s missiles use semi-radar radar to guide missiles in their terminal stage. The guidance radar will continue to irradiate the target to guide the missile at this point. In contrast, the missile’s semi-active radar will adhere to the irradiated radar wing reflected from the target.
It is still unclear why Russia uses the S-300 air defense missile system to attack ground targets in Ukraine? According to experts, Russia may have S-300 missiles when these missiles have a large inventory from the Soviet era; along with that, the number of precision-guided weapons in the Russian Army is dwindling.
Because Russia may have an excess of outdated missile ammunition that may be better suited for eliminating stationary targets on the ground than striking targets in the air, the S-300 is one of the older air defense systems.
The Russian Army uses the S-300 missile because it can “employ a wide variety of precision-guided surface-to-surface missiles; they do this to destroy targets in the area where there are numerous concentrated targets of the Ukrainian Army.” Suppose the Ukrainian Air Force cannot conduct airstrikes. In that case, Russia may switch the S-300’s function from air defense to ground attack.
The Russian Army has long tested the S-300 surface-to-air missile system’s ability to kill ground targets. The missiles, when launched on a ballistic trajectory, can reportedly be used to attack command centers, radar stations, and hangars up to 120 kilometers away, according to the Russian military.
The S-300 system’s missile includes: A high-explosive fragmentation warhead integrated and tuned for shooting down aircraft.Helicopters.Nearly any other airborne vehicle rather than hitting ground targets.
All of this should be considered a unique case indicator because the warhead’s impact in the air and on the ground will differ significantly.