Russia Makes Bold Claims for its Electronic Warfare Systems

By | Sep 04, 2016 11:24 AM EDT
Tough nuts to crack

Russian Ka-52 attack helicopters.(Photo : Russian Aerospace Forces)

Russian state-owned media has revealed a number of strategic and tactical electronic jamming systems operated by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation it claims can attain incredible results.

A system identified as Pole-21 consists of an integrated network of jammers installed on mobile phone towers that blanket protected areas and makes them "invisible" to satellite navigation systems. The now operational defense system also uses the towers' GSM antennas as a back-up channel for signal control and transmission.

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Pole -21 defends strategic facilities against cruise missiles, smart bombs and drones using GPS, GLONASS, Galileo and Beidou global positioning systems to home onto their targets.

Russian military sources said the system can jam GPS signals falling within the 1176.45 MHz and 1575.42 MHz range. They claim a small 20 watt transmitter is enough for Pole-21 to scramble all signals in this range within a radius of 80 kilometers.

Pole-21, however, also jams Russian GPS using GLONASS, making that a big problem for Russian military units within range of this jamming system.

On the tactical level, the Russian Airborne Troops intend to use EW and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) by the end of the year.

"We plan to complete the year by forming intelligence units, tank companies in the air assault divisions, as well as a drone company and electronic warfare companies," said Airborne Troops Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Nikolai Ignatov.

The Ground Forces of the Russian Federation will test a new helicopter-based radio electronic warfare system that protects helicopter units by blinding radar out to a range of a few hundred kilometers.

The "Rychag-AVM complex" will join two other helicopter-borne radio-electronic jammers: the Rychag-AV and its expert version, the Rychag-AVE.

Both are claimed to be able to throw enemy anti-aircraft missiles off course and confuse enemy communications. Russian media also claims the Rychag's systems can protect against fighter aircraft.

Rychag-AV can be mounted on helicopters, aircraft, ground vehicles and ships.

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