Russia’s Missile Force and Artillery Day is celebrated annually on November 19. The celebration date was set to commemorate the merits of artillery during the Soviet counter-offensive in the Battle of Stalingrad in 1942.
Historically, artillery has been called “the God of War” in the troops.
The ground troops’ missile forces and artillery are the primary means to inflict fire and nuclear damage on the enemy on the battlefield.
They consist of missile, rocket and artillery brigades, regiments and battalions operating both as standalone units and as part of divisions, brigades and military bases of the Russian Army.
Missile and artillery troops’ armament
- multiple launch rocket systems (Grad, Uragan, Smerch, Tornado and others);
- self-propelled artillery systems (Msta-S, Gvozdika, Nona and others);
- towed artillery guns (Msta-B, PAT-B and others);
- Iskander tactical ballistic missile systems (they are arriving for the troops to replace Tochka and Tochka-U complexes).
Russia continues rearming its missile formations to replace Tochka-U complexes with advanced Iskander-M missile systems. A total of ten brigade sets of Iskander-M missile systems are already operational in the Russian Army and all of Russia’s missile formations are expected to be rearmed with these latest complexes by 2020. The Iskander’s large upgrade potential will allow it to operate on a par with foreign analogues up to 2030.
- The troops received a batch of modernized 2S4 Tyulpan 240mm self-propelled mortars as part of the 2017 defense procurement program.
- Russia’s Defense Ministry and the Burevestnik Central Research Institute signed a contract on the delivery of an experimental batch of ten latest Koalitsiya-SV self-propelled artillery guns. Serial deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2020.
- The troops are receiving modernized Msta-SM self-propelled howitzers and Tornado-G multiple launch rocket systems integrated into the single tactical-level command and control system.
- The Southern Military District has received BM-21 Grad multiple launch rocket systems and Akatsiya self-propelled artillery guns this year.
- Ant-tank units are receiving the latest Khrizantema-S all-weather anti-tank missile systems.
- The troops are receiving the advanced means of radar reconnaissance (the Aistyonok and Zoopark-1M radars), sound ranging (the AZK-7M complex) and electro-optical surveillance (the PRP-4A) system, and also unmanned aerial vehicles.
- Missile and artillery technical units are being armed with the advanced Bataliya automated armament monitoring system.
Russian Army Commander-in-Chief Colonel-General Oleg Salyukov said in 2016 that the rearmament of the Missile Force and Artillery was expected to be completed by 2020.
Considering the modern stage of the development of warfare means in the world’s leading armies, the final goal of developing Russia’s Missile Force and Artillery is to create a “reconnaissance and firing system consisting of the reconnaissance, destruction and combat support sub-systems.”
They are planned to be united by a common automated control system.
Also, the rearmament of rocket artillery brigades with the upgraded Tornado-S systems instead of Smerch complexes will be completed by 2020.
According to data of Russia’s Defense Ministry, Russia’s missile and artillery troops are expected to have three types of highly mobile brigades – missile, rocket artillery and artillery units with increased combat capabilities exceeding the 2016 potential by 1.5-2 times.