The S-400 Triumf and S-500 Prometey systems can fire several interceptor missiles capable of intercepting low altitude to high altitude missiles, aircraft, ballistic missiles and UAVs. The S-400 supports four different missiles – the very long-range 40N6E-series (400 km), the long-range 48N6 (250 km), the 9M96E2 (120 km) and the short-range 9M96E (40 km).
The primary means of defeating such an air defence system is to use the EA-18 Growler. The EA-18G Growler is a critical weapon system that provides electronic attack capability to the US and Australian Airforce.
The EA-18 can disrupt, deceive, or deny a broad range of military electronic systems, including radars and communications. The EA-18 can locate, record, playback and digitally jam enemy communications over a wide frequency range using its ALQ-227 Communications Countermeasures Set. America’s premier electronic attack aircraft, the EA-18G Growler, as an antidote to first-class air defence systems, particularly the S-400.
The EA-18 Growler is fitted with ALQ-227, a multi-band jammer effective at standoff ranges and within the engagement range of HARM anti-radiation missiles.
The secondary method is Rafael EW suites. A video released by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems of Israel in late September 2018 shows that the company’s electronic warfare (EW) systems could be utilized to jam the radars of the S-400 air defence system.
The Israeli Air Force use of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter in Syria prove that the stealth fighter jet can go harms way to defeat advanced air defence system such as Syrian Army’s S-300, a variant of S-400 air defence system.
The third means of defeating the S-400 is to deploy the F-35 stealth fighter. The US Air Force and allies maintain the most advanced stealth fighter jet currently available in the market, the F-35 Lightning II. The F-35 advanced stealth and built-in electronic warfare capabilities enable unprecedented battlefield access without the need for dedicated electronic attack aircraft support.
According to Mark Shackelford, acquisition deputy, the F-35 was designed to be America’s premier surface-to-air missile killer and is uniquely equipped for this mission with cutting-edge processing power, synthetic aperture radar integration techniques and advanced target recognition.
The next-generation AN/ASQ-239 system protects the F-35 with the advanced technology with maximum situational awareness, helping to identify, monitor, analyze, and respond to potential threats. The AN/ASQ-239 system makes the F-35 an airborne hacker to locate and defect ground-based military early warning radar.
The F-35 is equipped with offensive and defensive electronic warfare options for the pilot and aircraft; the AN/ASQ-239 system suite provides fully integrated radar warning, a 360-degree view of the battlespace, targeting support, and self-protection, to detect and defeat and jam surface and airborne threats.
NATO SEAD and DEAD Capability
The NATO allies also pose sophisticated radar and terrain locating systems that provide enhanced radar image resolution, targeting and tracking range through APG-79, RBE2, Raven ES-05 and Captor-E Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar system.
The NATO Air Force poses various advanced electronic warfare suites such as SPECTRA and Sirius SIGINT. The SPECTRA integrated electronic warfare suite provides long-range detection, identification and accurate localization of infrared, electromagnetic and laser threats. The Sirius SIGINT provides a real-time SIGINT situational awareness picture in a modern, sophisticated and dense signal environment.
The NATO countries also pose advanced anti-radiation mission missiles– Spice 250, AS-37 Martel, MALD-J, JSOW and AGM-88 High-Speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM) can eliminate modern threats such as stationary and mobile air defence systems.
The Eurofighter Typhoon, the Saab JAS-39 E Gripen and the Dassault Rafale-F3R fighters are equipped with next-generation electronic warfare capability.
Saab’s Arexis is not only the pod; like Dassault’s SPECTRA electronic-warfare system, Arexis is made of many components integrated together. This may give countries without the political or financial means to operate the E/A-18G Growler the ability to operate a capable fighter-sized jamming platform.
The combination of advanced EW suites, advanced missiles and stealth fighter jets can engage in complex SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses) missions to defeat Russian air defence systems dramatically simplifies a complex solution to a complex problem—the S-400 Triumf and S-500.
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