NEW DELHI: India has now begun last contract negotiations with Russia for the Rs 39,000 crore (over $5.5 billion) acquisition of 5 superior S-400 Triumf air defence missile techniques.
S-400 can fire four different missiles: the very long-range 40N6 missile with a range of 450km; the long-range 48N6 missile with a range of 250km; the medium range 9M96E2 with 120km range; and the short-range 9M96E with 40km range. The 40N6 is ideal to kill enemy Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACA), while the 48N6 will be able to destroy all air objects including airplanes, helicopters, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles up to the speed of 4,800 meters per second. The ballistic missiles are killed 60km away from the target; this includes nuclear armed missiles which once destroyed will leave a thick nuclear haze over the target
“All of the 5 S-400 techniques, which may even tackle medium-range ballistic missiles, aside from cruise missiles, shall be delivered in 54 months. The force-multiplier will change the dynamics of air defence within the area,” a defence ministry supply stated.
Five regiments of S-400 will protect two to three major Indian cities including the capital city of New Delhi. In terms of configuration, India would need two surveillance radars each with phased array and multipath radar with range of 600km across 180 degrees to track up to 100 targets simultaneously. Moreover, each regiment which comprises two batteries with eight launchers will require one sectoral radar to acquire hostile target and pass its coordinates to the sectoral command post. Each Tractor Erector Launcher (TEL) which houses the missiles can carry four 48N6 missiles or two 40N6 missiles
It will be a government-to-government purchase with no provision for transfer of technology. Russia has assured that the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) — Almay-Antey Air Defence Corporation — will deal directly with the user, the Indian Air Force, to ensure timely product support. At present, all product support including spares and overhaul is done through Rosoboronexport, which is the official Russian export agency for arms sales.