russia A-235 Samolet-M



Originated From:Russia
Possessed By:Russia
Basing:Land, Fixed
In Service:2013/2014

The A-235 Samolet-M is an upgrade of the currently operational A-135 Samolet that is also referred to as the Moscow system. The A-235 will be a fixed land-based ballistic missile defense system and its new interceptors will probably utilize the presently mothballed 51T6 (Gorgon) silos. According to reports from December 2012, the A-235 could become operational in later 2013 or early 2014.1

Reportedly, the A-235 will use modernized 53T6 missiles, also known as the SH-08 or PRS-1 (NATO designation: Gazelle, U.S. DOD designation: ABM-3), with conventional warheads.2 Some experts doubted that the system’s capability of hit-to-kill interception.3 To shoot down ballistic missiles, Russia currently uses HE-fragmentation or nuclear warheads in its surface-to-air missile and ballistic defense systems. The A-235 is supposed to replace the A-135 that is equipped with 10kT nuclear interceptors.

Russia began work on this system in 1991. The system has been designed and developed by the Novator company in Yekaterinburg. The A-235’s specifications remain unknown but it was reported that it will have a range of up to a 100km and an altitude of up to 30km.4

  1. Aleksei Mikhailov, “Antimissile Shield of Moscow Will Be Reinforced with Gazelles,” Izvestia, December 12, 2012, sec. Military Status.
  2. Ruslan Pukhov, “Joint Missile Defense Is Limited to Data Sharing,” Moscow Times Website, May 3, 2012, supplied by BBC Worldwide Monitoring; accessible in LexisNexis.
  3. Mikhailov, “Antimissile Shield of Moscow Will Be Reinforced with Gazelles.”
  4. Ibid. Mikhailov, “Antimissile Shield of Moscow Will Be Reinforced with Gazelles.” “Russia Capable of Responding to Space Arms Race: Official,” Xinhua General News Service, December 11, 2012, sec. World News; Military, accessible in LexisNexis. “Moscow to Get Updated Missile Defenses-Deputy Minister,” Cihan News Agency, December 11, 2012, accessible in LexisNexis.
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Last updated: March 27, 2013 at 4:22 pm

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