TechUkrainian HIMARS strike cripples key Russian air defense in Luhansk

Ukrainian HIMARS strike cripples key Russian air defense in Luhansk

Destroyed Russian Pantsir-S1
Destroyed Russian Pantsir-S1
Images source: © X

7:26 AM EDT, June 12, 2024

The Ukrainian army destroyed another system that could obstruct the free movement of F-16 fighters, which would soon reach the front. In the Luhansk region, the HIMARS, often called the "god of war," conducted a precise strike on the Russian Pantsir-S1 air defense system.

Russians are losing more and more anti-aircraft defense equipment. Not long ago, military analyst Oleksandr Kovalenko calculated that the Russian Federation currently has about 100 divisions of S-300/400 complexes, significantly fewer than what the aggressor's army truly needs.

Losses of such weapons are currently exceptionally painful for the Russians in light of the upcoming appearance of the long-awaited F-16 aircraft over Ukraine – without air defense or with an insufficient supply; the Russians will be defenseless.

It is, therefore, not surprising that defenders constantly conduct hunts for any tools used by the Russian army to combat air threats – one of the latest such destructions was the elimination in the Luhansk region at the beginning of this week of the Pantsir-S1 system. Often referred to as the "god of war," the HIMARS is responsible for its destruction.

Precise HIMARS strike on the Russian Pantsir-S1 complex

The Russian Pantsir-S1, destroyed by the Ukrainians, is a weapon capable of intercepting virtually all fast-moving airborne objects (aircraft, helicopters, missiles). The complex is adapted to track up to 12 objects within a range of 12 miles and at altitudes of up to 9 miles, which is why this system is chosen to defend the most critical infrastructure elements and government buildings in the Russian Federation.

The Pantsir-S1 is equipped with 12 57E6 missiles, each capable of firing at two targets simultaneously. Additionally, the vehicle houses two 30 mm 2A38 automatic cannons, each with a range of 2.5 miles and a firing rate of 2,500 rounds per minute.

The Ukrainian attack used the M142 HIMARS, an American artillery system produced since 2003 and designed as a cheaper and more mobile counterpart to the M270 MLRS system. The HIMARS measures 23 feet in length, 8 feet in width, 10 feet in height, and weighs just over 35,000 pounds. Thanks to this, it is highly mobile – it can be transported by airplanes and moved on land. The propulsion unit accelerates it to speeds of nearly 62 mph, and its maximum range reaches 311 miles.

This American system's armament used in Ukraine includes a set of six 227 mm GMLRS rockets with a range of 52 miles or one MGM-140 ATACMS missile with a range of 186 miles. The latter has recently been increasingly used, especially in Crimea, where Ukrainians primarily target Russian S-300/400 complexes.

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