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MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. The most advanced air-droppable short-range air defense missile system code-named Ptitselov (Fowler) will become operational in Russia’s Airborne Force in 2020, a source in the Russian defense sector told TASS on Wednesday.
"The development of the Ptitselov is currently at the stage of experimental design work, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2019 and from 2020 this short-range complex based on the BMD-4M combat vehicle is set to become operational in the Airborne Force’s air defense missile units," the source said.
"By its combat capabilities, including by the altitude and the range of target engagement, the Ptitselov will surpass the air defense systems currently operational in the Airborne Force by two times," the source added.
The source did not give the Ptitselov’s major characteristics but noted that it was both aircraft transportable and air-droppable from military transport planes.
The Ptitselov is a purely anti-aircraft missile system and therefore it has no cannon armament, the source said.
A source in Russia’s Defense Ministry told TASS in May last year that Russia was creating the world’s first air-droppable anti-aircraft missile system on the basis of the BMD-4M armored vehicle.
According to the source, the experimental design work was underway under the codename of Ptitselov. The new system may get the combat module of the Sosna complex. The new system is intended for specialized antiaircraft missile regiments formed several years ago.