The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) has started the development of a new air defense system, the S-550.
"Much attention was paid to improving the country's aerospace defense system. The head of state emphasized the importance of the priority development of domestic air defense-missile defense systems, the supply of S-350, S-500, S-550 systems to the Armed Forces," Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said in a speech published by the MoD on its official YouTube channel.
The characteristics of the S-550 system and work on this system have not been previously reported.
Interfax reported that the S-550 was called the short-range intercept missile defense system, which was developed in the USSR in the 1980s. The S-550 project was scrapped after agreements reached at a meeting in 1986 between the leaders of the USSR and the United States, Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan. Some resources report that after the collapse of the USSR, the reserve created as part of the work on the S-550 project was destroyed, and the prototype of the complex was eliminated in 1992.
Retired Lieutenant-General Aytech Bizhev, former deputy chief of the air defense main headquarters and deputy commander-in-chief of the Russian Air Force, told Interfax on Tuesday that he did not know anything about the S-550 project. “I don’t know such a project,” Bizhev said.