Ukrainian forces recently utilized a Patriot air defense system to neutralize Russia’s ‘unstoppable’ ‘Kinzhal hypersonic missile.
About Patriot System?
- The Patriot, which stands for Phased Array Tracking Radar for Intercept on Target, is a theater-wide surface-to-air missile defense system built by Raytheon Technologies Corp (RTX.N) and considered one of the most advanced air defense systems in the U.S. arsenal.
- The system was first used in combat during the 1991 Gulf War, with batteries protecting Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Israel, and later used during the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
- It is a mobile system that usually includes powerful radar, a control station, a power generator, launch stations and other support vehicles.
- The system has different capabilities depending on the type of interceptor used. The PAC-2 interceptor uses a blast-fragmentation warhead, while the newer PAC-3 missile uses more advanced hit-to-kill technology.
How widely is the system used?
- Raytheon has built more 240 Patriot systems and they are currently used by 18 countries, including the United States. The system has been in high demand in the Middle East because of the threat posed by Iran to the region.
- According to Raytheon, the system has intercepted more than 150 ballistic missiles in combat since 2015.
Q1) What is a ballistic missile?
Ballistic missile, a rocket-propelled self-guided strategic-weapons system that follows a ballistic trajectory to deliver a payload from its launch site to a predetermined target. Ballistic missiles can carry conventional high explosives as well as chemical, biological, or nuclear munitions.