Oct 16, 2021
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Top secret electronic warfare: Who is “jamming” the sky over the Crimean bridge

Top secret electronic warfare: Who is

Photo: Alla Dmitrieva / TASS

The topic of the Crimean Bridge still remains painful for Kiev – they continue to invent different ways of destroying this Russian strategic transport facility. Now they even declare their readiness to ram the icebreaker James Clark Ross bought from Great Britain. A delusional idea – both with the purchase of the icebreaker itself (however, a couple of years ago, the flagship of the Navy “Getman Sagaidachny” was frozen into the ice in the port of Odessa), and with an attempt to ram.

But the Bayraktar drone drones purchased from Turkey, with which Ukraine also scares the Crimean bridge, may attempt an attack. It was an attempt, because the bridge is guarded by many forces and means, including air defense, and now, as it turned out, by means of electronic warfare – electronic warfare. As the Russian edition now reports, “an unknown electronic warfare system is jamming the airspace in the Kerch Strait region.” The American military aircraft, which constantly “rub” against the Russian coast in Crimea (and not only there), and regularly disappear from radars, have experienced this.

Well, the fact that the Crimea is covered by Russian electronic warfare (and this is a whole electronic regiment from the Southern Military District), capable of “stunning” and “blind” aircraft, UAVs, as well as warships, has been known for a long time. For example, back in 2017, the Murmansk-BN complex was deployed here. This weapon is a long-range caliber – the complex is capable, at a distance of several thousand kilometers, not only to disable communication and navigation of a ship or aircraft of a potential enemy, but also to disable all the electronics of their onboard weapons. Finishes off “Murmansk” and to the Mediterranean Sea, so in the Crimea, this “gun” is not required. There are other remedies that are just as effective.

In recent years, the Russian military-industrial complex has launched into the troops a whole series of electronic warfare devices that are capable of nullifying all possible attacks from a potential enemy from heaven, earth and water. For example, the mobile complex “Rtut-BM” is designed to protect against artillery shells with radio fuses on an area of ​​20-50 hectares. The Infauna system neutralizes the fuses of high-precision air-to-surface and surface-to-surface missiles, as well as striking enemy communications and command facilities. Aviation complex “Khibiny”, installed on Su-34 bombers and Su-30SM fighters, makes the aircraft invisible to radio electronic means.

The US military is well aware of the availability of electronic warfare equipment in the RF Armed Forces. “Russian electronic warfare units have transcendental capabilities,” the commander of NATO forces in Europe, Lieutenant General, stated pessimistically. Ben Hodges… The Americans realized that the latest Russian electronic weapons completely paralyze the functioning of electronics installed on missiles, planes and ships. “Russia’s achievements in the field of electronic warfare negate all the advantages of high-tech weapons in NATO armament,” the brigadier general admitted. Frank Gorenko

The mobile systems “Krasukha-4” and “Moscow-1”, which disheartened NATO generals, paralyze offensive and defensive weapons of all types. It is known that the Krasukha-4 complex within a radius of 300 kilometers suppresses spy satellites, ground radars and AWACS aircraft systems, making Russian weapons completely invisible. It is also capable of inflicting radar damage to enemy electronic warfare and communications equipment. Blocks the complex and control channels of drones. The Moscow-1 complex in the passive electronic scanning mode (without emitting radio waves) monitors the space within a radius of 400 kilometers, detects not only aircraft and missiles, but also enemy shells.

“Krasukha” is credited, probably, not unreasonably, with the “loss” of 36 American Tomahawks launched from American URO ships in the Mediterranean at the beginning of 2017 at the Syrian airbase. They did not reach the target and fell into the sea. The “Krasukha-4” electronic warfare system gave the cruise missiles a “false trail”, which detected them and reoriented them already in flight. The remaining 23 missiles nevertheless hit the Syrian airfield without causing significant damage to it due to the limited presence of Russian electronic warfare stations at the positions.

Another electronic warfare system – “Leer-3”, is capable of blocking phones in GSM networks and sending false messages. It is likely that this complex, along with the “Krasukha-4”, can also be deployed in the Crimea. “Leer-3” is officially called “an aerodynamically thrown transmitter of interference to subscriber terminals of cellular communication of the GSM standard.” The complex is designed to suppress GSM communications using interference transmitted by a special unmanned aerial vehicle. A special transmitter installed on a lightweight UAV simulates the operation of a cellular network base station and thereby interferes with the normal operation of subscriber terminals.

Externally, the RB-341 B complex based on the KamAZ-5350 chassis cannot be distinguished from some kind of maintenance vehicle or a staff box. Unless in the deployment area, the Leer-3 van of special equipment pretends to be retractable antennas and locators. All the “highlights” are inside. And also in the air. After all, the direct strike means of the complex are two Orlan-10 unmanned aerial vehicles. These UAVs are equipped with special radio signal transmitters that simulate the operation of basic GSM networks and counteract the use of subscriber terminals. Such equipment allows blocking the operation of any devices in the GSM-900 and GSM-1800 ranges. At the same time, cellular networks are completely blocked.

In this context, one cannot but recall the Alabuga complex – an electromagnetic weapon that beats with an impulse. There is no real confirmation of both the very existence of this complex and its effectiveness in testing. Nevertheless, representatives of the developer, the Concern “Radioelectronic Technologies” (KRET), argue that this can be either the usual jamming effect with the temporary disabling of enemy weapons systems and military equipment, or complete electronic destruction, leading to energy, destructive damage basic electronic elements, boards, blocks and systems.

Actually, “Alabuga” is not an electronic missile, as is commonly believed, but a whole complex of studies to create a new type of weapon using an electromagnetic pulse. And the missile itself is only a means of delivering a charge to the battlefield and, most likely, it can be a cruise missile of the Caliber family, both sea-based, land-based and air-based.

As far as we know, a new winged platform specifically for the high-frequency complex is being actively developed now. The whole point is in the “warhead”, which does not have traditional means of destruction in the form of fragments, blast waves, etc., so it would be a stretch to call “Alabuga” a bomb. Moreover, the effectiveness of its use is comparable to that of a nuclear strike. Of the exact characteristics – few, here, most likely, the potential combat capabilities of the “Alabuga” intended to disable, in the full sense of the word “burnout”, all radio-electronic equipment of surface ships, enemy aircraft (aircraft, helicopters, drones, cruise missiles ), ground units.

It is no coincidence that the Americans are now complaining about the low potential of their electronic warfare equipment and the lack of training of personnel. For several decades, neither the United States nor other NATO armies fought in conditions of suppression of communications, therefore, some experience was lost, and development in the field of electronic warfare slowed down. This is despite the fact that American radio intelligence has a powerful potential to conduct “wiretapping” around the world. With the means of suppression, the Americans turned out to be much worse.

Russia, on the other hand, pays special attention to electronic warfare means, considering them as one of the elements of weapons and is constantly improving them. The notorious “KGB jammers” found their purpose in the army. Electronic warfare equipment was actively used during the war in Afghanistan, in hostilities on the territory of Chechnya, where they were used mainly to detect enemy communications equipment. In Syria, electronic warfare means can fight air targets, including unmanned drones, depriving them of control and forcing them to land. And it is not at all surprising that the electronic warfare systems are located in the Crimea, covering, among other things, the approaches to the Kerch Strait.

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