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Russia’s first Pantsyr-S air defense missile battalion assumes combat duty in Arctic

The system is the most effective in rugged terrain conditions

MOSCOW, July 29. /TASS/. The first battalion of Pantsyr-S surface-to-air missile/gun systems has assumed combat duty in Russia’s Northern Fleet, the Fleet’s press office issued a statement on Monday.

"The first battalion in the Northern Fleet’s Kola air defense formation armed with Pantsyr-S surface-to-air missile/gun systems has assumed experimental combat duty to protect the airspace over the Fleet’s main base," the statement reads.

Considering the rugged terrain on the Kola Peninsula where the Northern Fleet’s main forces are based, the Pantsyr-S is the most effective system to provide for the air defense of military facilities and reliably strike hostile targets, including small-size air objects, the press office said.

Pantsyr-S systems arrived with the Northern Fleet in late 2018. Over the course of several months, the battalion’s personnel underwent re-training to learn to operate the new systems and successfully test-fired them at the Ashuluk practice range in the Astrakhan Region in south Russia.

Most operators of Pantsyr-S surface-to-air missile/gun system that have assumed experimental combat duty have the practical experience of its combat use as gained during their missions in Syria.

The experimental combat duty of Pantsyr-S systems intended to defend the airspace over the Northern Fleet’s main base will help reliably protect military facilities at close ranges, the statement adds.

The Pantsyr-S is a small-range weapon designated to strike air targets with automatic anti-aircraft guns and missiles with radio-command guidance and infrared and radar tracking. As its specific feature, the weapon combines the multi-channel target acquisition and tracking system and the missile/artillery armament designed to strike targets at an altitude of up to 15 km and within a range of 20 km.