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Russian Pantsir-S air defense system now armed with hypersonic missiles

Russian Pantsir-S missile-gun systems are being armed with a new Mach 5 hypersonic missile making it substantially more lethal than systems having only subsonic missiles.

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Pantsir gun-missile air defense system (Picture source: Army Recognition)

“The new missile approaches the target faster, which increases the system’s rate of fire because the firing channel is freed faster,” Chief Designer for Air Defense Systems at the Shipunov Design Bureau Valery Slugin told TASS today. "In addition, there is no need to load a large amount of explosives into the missile’s warhead for the fragments’ dispersal: the higher the impact speed, the greater the fragments’ efficiency," the chief designer said in an interview to TASS. "There are two missiles that fight the entire range of targets. One is standard while the other has been developed recently and is hypersonic: it can develop a speed of Mach 5 and more," the chief designer said.

So far, the Pantsir-S took down some 100 drones around the world over the course of its service, Valery Slugin continued. There are two Pantsir-S divisions deployed in Syria: the Russian one, located at Hmeimim airbase, and a Syrian one. Terrorist drones rigged with explosively repeatedly used to attack the Hmeimim base, gave the system “some trouble,” he said.


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