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Kupol 9K330/9K331/9K332 Tor M/M1/M2
Self Propelled Air Defence System / SA-15 Gauntlet
Cамоходный Зенитный Ракетный Комплекс
9К330/9К331/9К332 Тор М/М1/М2
Technical Report APA-TR-2009-0705
Updated May, 2011
Updated April, 2012
Text, Line Art © 2009-2011 Carlo Kopp
Kupol 9K332 Tor M2E / SA-15 Gauntlet point defence and Counter-PGM system at MAKS 2007. This new variant is hosted on the new MZKT-69222 6 x 6 TLAR/TELAR chassis, common the new 9K317 Buk M2/M2E / SA-17 Grizzly (NIEMI image).
The 9K331 Tor-M1 / SA-15 Gauntlet system, is a highly mobile rapid reaction SAM built to replace the Cold War era SA-8 Gecko system. Like the SA-8 Gecko, the Tor M1 TELAR is a fully self contained package, with a search radar, a monopulse tracking and engagement radar, and a magazine of Automatic Command to Line Of Sight guided missiles.
The design aims of the Gauntlet were however broader than those for the Gecko, and not only are low flying aircraft and helicopters intended targets, but also cruise missiles, standoff missiles and smart bombs during their terminal flight phase. Russian thinking is that S-300PMU/S-400 battery elements such as radars and command posts are to be covered by Gauntlet point defence systems, intended to engage and destroy guided munitions targeting the S-300PMU/S-400 battery elements.
The earliest Gauntlet variants are carried on a GM-355 tracked chassis, with later tracked variants using the GM-5955 chassis. The E/F-band folding surveillance radar is carried on the top of the turret, and the G/H-band engagement radar, claimed to be a phased array design, is mounted on the front. Eight vertically launched 9K331 SAM rounds are carried in sealed magazines, these are vertically ejected before ignition using the cold launch technique. Once clear of the TELAR, the canard missiles use nose rocket thrusters to pitch over in the direction of the target and effect the engagement. Reaction time to threats is credited in seconds between track confirmation and launch.
While in conceptual terms the Gauntlet compares well to the Franco-German Roland, the missile is more advanced and the TELAR far more capable than the Roland ever could be.
Tor M1 / SA-15 Gauntlet system (Kupol JSC).
The still current Tor M1 production variant incorporates a range of design improvements over the baseline Tor/Tor M variants. Probably the best technical summary of this system was published by Iosif Drize [Chief Designer] and Alexandr Luzan [Advisor to the Director General of the State Corporation Rosvoorouzhenie] in the Rosoboronexport house journal, Military Parade (TOR-M1 SAM SYSTEM: PROTECTING GROUND INSTALLATIONS AGAINST HIGH-PRECISION WEAPONS; Military Parade, 1996), cite:
"In the 1970-1980s, several countries acquired airborne high-precision weapons (HPW - further abbreviated as PGM), boasting improved quality and produced in increased numbers. In terms of effectiveness, the PGM could compare to tactical nuclear weapons, while they could be carried by both strategic aircraft and most flying machines represented by the army and tactical aircraft.
At present, leading military specialists consider the PGM as the main weapon to deliver the first (preventive) strike, capable of disabling or paralyzing air defenses, increasing the capacity and enhancing the effectiveness of the conventional means of air attack. In the course of subsequent combat operations the PGM is used, as a rule, to destroy (neutralize) the vital pinpoint and small-size targets carrying important potentials.
According to modern classification, the tactical PGM include:
1. Antiradar missiles capable of destroying targets at a distance of 15 to 70 and, in perspective, up to 150 km from the launching point and flying at altitudes of 60 m to 12 - 16 km. The effective RCS of such missiles is minimized to about 0.1 m2, while the flight speed varies from 200 to 700 m/s.
2. Airborne guided missiles with infrared, laser or TV homing heads, with a launching range from 6 to 10 km, angles of attack from 8-10 to 45-60 deg, effective RCS from 0.06 to 0.5 m2 and flight speeds from 200 to 600 m/s.
3. Gliding and controlled guided aerial bombs and clusters with a release (drop) range of 8 to 10 km, effective Radiation PatternRCS below 0.5 m2, speed of 250 to 400 m/s and angles of attack up to 50 - 55 deg.
4. Missiles fitted with inertial guidance and terrain avoidance features using the terrain map and capable of flying at 60 m and lower altitudes.
The PGM also include antiship missiles.
Overall, the features that distinguish the PGM (or their destructive components) from other radar targets and offensive means alike are:
- small effective RCS averaging in the forward hemisphere at 0.1 m2 for the centimeter waveband (1.5 - 5 cm);
- wide range of angular rates and angles of approach to the objective of the attack: from level flight at an altitude of 30 to 60 m with terrain avoidance to angles of attack of 45 to 60 deg and more;
- high cruising and maximum speeds of flight (200 to 700 m/s), variable values of such speeds (accelerated and decelerated flights) as well as high operational load factors reaching 8 to 10 g;
- high mechanical strength of guided and controlled aerial bombs, reducing their vulnerability as targets.
Such PGM features help them effectively withstand such systems as Osa, Roland and Crotale-NG. The first two circumstances impose new requirements on radars employed by the SAMs designed to fight the PGM, while the other two impose requirements on the flight ballistics and control loop of the systems as well as on the muscle of their combat equipment.
The low values of effective RCS require huge expenditure of energy by both TAR and TTR, especially in case of electronic countermeasures undertaken by the enemy as well as the implementation of new procedures to seek out and track targets. The TAR must be either three-coordinate or capable of measuring the target angle of site to an accuracy that minimizes the fine search time by the TTR.
The wide range of angles at which the PGM may approach the objective dictates the need for the TAR to shape an isodistant target detection zone instead of the isoheight (cosecant-squared) one widely employed by the SAMs, which is the main reason for the poor effectiveness of the existing SAM systems against the PGM.
In addition, the TAR should realize the principle of criterional processing of the signals, thereby minimizing the level of false alarms, and also examine the target flight paths, categorize the targets, select the most dangerous ones from a group of detected targets and prioritize them. To solve these tasks, the TAR should incorporate a data processor with the required capacity.
The TTR must ensure prompt lockon of one or several targets and automatically track the PGMs to an accuracy sufficient for their reliable engagement by SAMs at prescribed ranges.
Meeting these requirements minimizes the system reaction time.
The following specific demands are imposed on SAMs intended to fight the PGM:
(1) the missiles must be given a minimum possible time to be ready for launch (3-4 s);
(2) the propulsion system of the SAM should ensure its most rapid acceleration (within 3-5 s) to the prescribed speed and support its powered flight to a range no shorter than the prescribed killing range of the PGM. The operational load factors of the SAM must allow it to hit the PGM with a g-load not less than 10 units;
(3) the armament of the SAM must have sufficient power to destroy a highly strong PGM and allow the SAM to adapt to the type (class) of the target to be destroyed;
(4) the cost of the SAM should be the minimum required to achieve the positive balance between the cost of the PGM (plus the cost of the prevented damage) and adjusted cost of the SAM.
The general demands on a SAM system designed to fight the PGM are as follows:
- the engagement range of aircraft that carries optically guided PGM must exceed the effective range of such weapons;
- the reaction time, that is, the time elapsed between target detection and missile firing instants should be at a minimum. This can be attained via high automation of the battle performance based on extensive employment of computers (multiprocessor systems), elements of robotization and artificial intellect for maximum reduction of the crew workload;
- the maximum cost-effectiveness criterion versus minimum cost of the SAM and reasonable (from the viewpoint of its significance) cost of the facility it protects;
- the ability to combine the requisite number of SAMs into a highly automated system designed to defend the vital installations and main groupings of troops at the appropriate level.
Russia's Tor-M1 SAM system is the world's first short-range air defense system specifically tailored for highly effective use against the PGM.
The Tor-M1 SAM system has been developed and series produced by the Antey Concern. The system is a logical sequel to the OSA SAM family, capable of repelling existing and potential threats with the maximum efficiency.
The core of the Tor-M1 SAM system is its combat vehicle (CV) whose main version is based on the cross-country tracked chassis of an intermediate weight category.
The CV comprises:
- TAR with a ground-based radar interrogator;
- target and missile tracking radar (TTR);
- backup TV optical tracker designed to autotrack targets in angular coordinates;
- high-speed multiplex digital computer;
- air situation display equipment, CV systems and means monitoring equipment, and CV commander and operator control panels;
- coded radio command operational communications system;
- navigation, survey control and orientation equipment;
- surface-to-air missiles in group launching transporting containers (two containers with four SAMs in each);
- primary power supply with the generator driven by the gas turbine engine or the engine of the self-propelled chassis;
- auxiliary equipment.
The Tor-M1 CV detects and selects air targets on the move and fires missiles at them from short halts.
The antenna system of the TAR is stabilized. It produces an eight-portion Battary command postradiation pattern (Fig. 2).
The scanning interval is 1 s, the beam flare (width) in the vertical plane is 4 deg; the portion switchover (scanning) mechanism is electronic. Any three portions of the radiation pattern can be scanned within one scanning interval. The entire elevation zone covers 32 deg and can be scanned within 3 s. The regular scanning program is selected in such a way that, in order to increase the detection range for low-altitude targets, the first portion is scanned twice within three scanning intervals.
To augment the TAR potential, the antenna system of the radar can be revolved mechanically through 32 deg with a detection zone of 32 to 64 deg. This means that two CVs of the Tor-M1 system can make up a detection zone of 0 to 64 deg, and the firing capabilities of each CV assure target engagement within 0 and 80 deg in elevation.
To increase the pulse energy, the length of the emitted pulse is increased, and the pulse is internally modulated. The radar can also operate in an active jamming environment when the entire transmitted power of the radar is accumulated in one critical portion instead of being distributed among three portions.
The receivers perform an automatic threshold and criterional processing of signals in digital form.
To detect targets against the background of the earth's underlaying surface, atmospheric perturbations or man-made passive jamming, the TAR is provided with the moving target indication (MTI) feature assuring detection of both high- and low-speed (up to 10 m/s) targets without "blind" speeds. The MTI system has two rejection zones allowing simultaneous suppression of both the clutter and moving passive interferences.
After their first (coarse) cessing, the signals are fed to a computer where target track initiation is performed. The most dangerous threats are identified by their minimum approach flight time, altitude and crossover range. This information is then used to designate the targets for the TTR. The accuracy of target designation is 100 m in range, 20 min in azimuth and 2 deg in elevation.
The main characteristics of the TAR and zone for detection of a target with the effective RCS equal to 0.1 m2 and detection probability p = 0.5. The radar has a detection range of 18 to 22 km, which is sufficient to engage air targets (depending on their speed) at ranges from 12 km and less and within virtually all elevations (up to 64 deg).TOR-M1 system components.
The TTR of the Tor-M1 SAM system is of the pulse Doppler type capable of determining four coordinates of the selected target. To assure steady passover to autotracking of point targets and obtain highly accurate target coordinates, the radar uses a high-powered pulse transmitter.
To reduce the time required to switch to the autotracking mode and materially weaken the influence of the motion of the target on its lockon, the TTR uses a phased antenna array (PAA) with a small number of elements, which deflects the antenna beam at a level of 3 dB within ñ7.5 deg. The fine target search is then accomplished through electronic deflection of the antenna beam within 7 deg in elevation and 3 deg in azimuth. With the selected accuracy of the target designation received from the TAR, the fine search limits assure 100-percent target lockon. The time required to switch to autotracking ranges from 400 to 600 ms, depending on the target speed and interferences. With this passover time, the target seems to be "frozen" with respect to the scanning sector of the PAA, ensuring the high reliability of the switch to the autotracking mode. The TTR uses the Doppler signal processing, pulse compression, fast Fourier transforms, and narrow-band filtration, which, when combined with the high-energy pulse, large gain of the PAA and low level of its sidelobe and background noise, makes the TTR highly immune to jamming.
The Tor-M1 SAM system uses a TV optical tracker, which autotracks target angular coordinates, as a backup tracking system.
The missile armament is used effectively by discriminating between target types. The TAR allows discrimination between four classes of targets: point targets (or PGM), airplanes, helicopters and unidentified targets. This results in increased probability of engagement of small-size targets, notably PGM.
To track missiles, the TTR has two channels. One of the channels serves to lock on to and track the missile by using beacon signals at the starting leg of the flight. The second channel uses the missile responder signals received via the PAA to track the missile throughout its flight path.
The commands are transmitted to the missile by the radar transmitter via the PAA. The indicator equipment, incorporating a commander's target flight path display, TTR target and missile tracking displays, a TV tracker video monitor, TAR operator displays, control panels and signalling devices, are brought onto a single console located in the CV operator compartment. The seat of the driver-mechanic, who drives the CV, starts and monitors the operation of the gas turbine driven power supply unit, is also located there.
In terms of shape, the Tor-M1 missile is of the canard type. It is launched vertically to a height of 15 to 20 m with the aid of a powder catapult and is then inclined by a special thruster towards the target, and its main solid propellant rocket motor takes over.
The motor of the missile is single-stage and two-mode. In the launching mode, the motor accelerates, within four seconds, the missile to a maximum speed of 850 m/s; in the cruising mode, which lasts for 12 seconds of flight, it maintains the above speed. This makes for the required power-to-weight ratio of the missile, allows the missile to cover a distance of 8 km in powered flight and effectively engage targets flying at speeds below 700 m/s and g-loads up to 10 g.
The missile is furnished ready for use inside a launching transporting container designed to accommodate four missiles.
One major characteristic of the short-range missile systems is the reaction time or the interval between the moment of target detection by the TAR and the instant of missile launch. One can single out three characteristic stages in the process:
- detection of targets by the TAR, their processing and track initiation, establishing priorities according to the relative threat criterion, and production of target designation data for the TTR;
- orientation of the antenna post towards the most dangerous target in azimuth and elevation;
- fine search of the target, switchover to autotracking and missile launch.
The total reaction time of the Tor-M1 SAM system changes from 3.4 to 10.6 s, depending on the employment conditions and intensity of interference. When employed on the move, the two seconds required to stop the CV are added to this time. It should be stressed that the high degree of battle performance automation, employment of artificial intellect and unique algorithms make it possible to perform all the operations, involving detection of targets and the switch to autotracking the two most dangerous ones, virtually without operator intervention.
Four Tor-M1 SAM CVs are organic to one SAM battery, which is the smallest tactical subunit capable of executing combat missions independently. To control the combat actions and fire of the CVs, each SAM battery has an automated battery command post (BCP). Using the coded communications and navigation, survey control and orientation equipment of the CVs, the BCP produces target distribution and precludes accidental concentration of fire of several CVs on one target. The essence of target distribution resides in the automatic exchange of information on autotracked targets among the CVs via the BCP and automatic reassignment of priorities by the CVs with corrections made for received information. The target distribution system realizes the step-by-step principle of adaptation of the CVs to the current air situation in real time. When necessary, the battery commander may intervene into (correct) the target distribution process and execute other combat control tasks.
Furthermore, the BCP can receive and display the current air situation (10 most dangerous targets) from one (any) subordinate CV and from the TAR located at a higher command post (CP) and establish operational communication inside the SAM battery and with the higher CP.
The entire process of control over the Tor-M1 SAM system CVs can be realized when all the elements of the SAM battery are on the move or brought to a halt. The BCP also integrates the SAM battery or a local system organized around it into the general structures of the air defense systems of a large unit or region of the country.
In addition to these combat means, the Tor-M1 SAMs are provided with transloaders, maintenance trucks and mobile SPTA sets."
A towed semi-mobile variant of the Tor M1 is on offer, sacrificing mobility for lower cost (Rosoboronexport).
The Tor M1 is being supplanted in production by the 9K332/9K331MK Tor M2/M2E variant, which incorporates substantial design changes.
The Tor M2/M2E is a “deep modernisation” of the baseline Tor M1 weapon system, available on the legacy tracked chassis, or the entirely new low profile wheeled MZKT-6922 6 x 6 chassis as the 9A332/9A331MK, the latter specifically developed by the ByeloRussian manufacturer for this application. Russian sources claim the Russian MoD sought the same KAMAZ chassis as used with the SA-22 / Pantsir S1, but the manufacturer was unhappy with the overall height and hardness of the vehicle, and contracted MZKT in Minsk to develop a new vehicle. The MZKT-6922 is semi-hardened, and intended to protect the crew and systems from small arms fire, shrapnel and spall. The new vehicle weighs 17 tonnes, with a maximum gross weight of 30 tonnes. It is powered by a 420 SHP YaMZ-7513.10 diesel, using an MZKT GMP-400 transmission, delivering a road speed of 80 km/h.
The Tor M2E has an improved weapon system. The new planar array surveillance radar can track up to 48 targets concurrently, retaining the range performance of the legacy system. The revised phased array engagement radar uses new phase shifters, and is capable of tracking targets within a claimed 30° solid angle around the antenna boresight. Paired command link antennas are mounted on both sides of the array, used to acquire the missiles post launch, while they are out of the field of view of the engagement radar array. Missiles can be launched 2 seconds apart. The manufacturer has identified the missile design as an area of future improvement, the turret permitting the carriage of a large number of smaller and lighter future missiles.
The envisaged Tor M2E battery structure comprises four 9A332/9A331MK TELARs, one 9S737MK Ranzhir-MK mobile command post, two 9T244 transloader vehicles, and one 9V887M2K engineering support vehicle.
While the Tor M2E offers incremental gains in system capability, its key advance over earlier variants is its much higher in-theatre mobility, and intra-theatre deployability, making it a much more practical asset for defending infrastructure targets than the legacy Tor/Tor-M1 variants, optimised to escort armoured battlefield manouvre formations. The Tor M2E is well suited for the envisaged role of protecting fixed targets and highly mobile S-300PMU2/S-400 missile batteries from PGM attack.
A more detailed analysis of the Ranzhir Command Post can be found under Warsaw Pact / Russian Air Defence Command Posts, and the tracked GM5955 and wheeled MZKT-6922 chassis under Russian and PLA Point Defence System Vehicles.
The 9K331 / SA-15 Gauntlet family of systems employs two generations of radar package, designated collectively the Scrum Half. Earlier variants were developed to defend land manoevre forces against missile firing attack helicopters and low flying close air support fighters. More recently the role of the system has been redefined to protection of high value targets against precision guided munitions and cruise missiles. The current Tor M2E has new radar package and is carried on a wheeled chassis, both optimisations for its new primary role.A more detailed discussion can be found under Engagement and Fire Control Radars.
Early model 9K330/SA-15A Gauntlet round (via Military.cz).
Late model 9M334 missiles in their four round magazine (© 2009 Vitaliy V. Kuzmin).
of the missile round is similar conceptually to much earlier 9K33 /
SA-8 Gecko, but with some important differences, both
employing a simple tubular airframe design with a solid
rocket powerplant. The airframe uses cruciform canard controls for
pitch/yaw control, and a revolving sleeve mounts the cruciform tail
surfaces. The missile is not roll stabilised. The controls are powered
by compressed air.
significant difference in the control system is the use of nose mounted
thrust vectoring jets, used to pivot the missile to the desired azimuth
and pitch angle after its vertical launch. Unlike its
missile uses the vertical cold launch technique, with a charge ejecting
the round vertically from the transport and launch canister.
proximity fuse transmit antenna is in the missile nose, which also
contains the transmitter. The fuse receiver, command link receiver and
autopilot are all clustered in the centresection of the missile. The
warhead is situated between the guidance section and motor. A pair of
command link and beacon antennas are mounted on the tail.
have not disclosed the specific control laws used in this design, but
known that the missiles are flown in an arcing trajectory, and perform
a shallow dive against a low flying target, this is intended to
maximise ground clearance of the missile round and facilitate tracking
by the TLAR regardless of clutter.
Tor M1 system launching a missile. The Tor series uses the 'cold launch' technique, whereby the round is ejected vertically from the tube, and once clear ignites its motor. Note the nose mounted thrusters used to rapidly pivot the missile in the direction of the target.
During the 1990s the PLA procured the Russian 9K331M1 Tor-M1 / SA-15C Gauntlet system. Chinese sources put the SA-15 inventory at around 25 systems, deployed with the 31st and 38th Army Groups. The Russians have also exported this system to Greece/Cyprus, Libya, Venezuela, Yemen and Iran.
SAM System Mobility - Air Defence System Vehicles [Click for more ...]
SAM System Integration - Air Defence Command Posts [Click for more ...]
SAM System Passive Targeting - Emitter Locating Systems [Click for more ...]
SAM System Counter VLO Capabilities [Click for more ...]
SAM System Multimedia - Rosoboronexport Footage [Click for more ...]
The Russian Tor M2 or SA-15D Gauntlet is by far the most capable point defence SAM system deployed by Russia and its clientele. It is used to defend against low flying aircraft as well as cruise missiles and guided weapons like smart bombs. It is available on a tracked chassis, and more recently, a purpose designed semi-hardened MZKT-6922 6 x 6 all terrain vehicle. Depicted deployed configuration (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Side aspect view of Tor M2E with antennas fully deployed (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Tor M2E on newer MZKT-69222 TLAR with acquisition radar antenna stowed (© 2009, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Aft view of Tor M2E with antennas fully deployed, and engagement radar tilted up to engage a target at high elevation angle (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Tor M2E with acquisition radar antenna deployed (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Above, below: Detail of turret with acquisition radar antenna deployed (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Tor M2E PESA engagement radar (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
Tor M2E PESA engagement radar. The design is capable of tilting to engage high elevation targets The Electro-Optical targeting system is at the left of the image. Note the hemispherical command uplink antennas for post launch missile acquisition.
Tor M2E search radar in deployed configuration. The planar array design replaces the cumbersome paraboloid section reflector design used with the Tor M1 series.
Tor M2E search radar in deployed configuration showing antenna waveguides and mounting detail. The design would appear to be a typical planar array with frequency scanning in elevation. The upper curved antenna is the IFF channel.
Apertures for the Tor M2E Electro-Optical tracking system, used to supplement the engagement radar in heavily jammed environments. It replaces the 9Sh319 variant used in the Tor M1 series.
Detail of turret with missile nose exposed (© 2007, Said Aminov, Vestnik PVO).
The improved Tor M2E variant was to deploy with Russian PVO-SV units in 2009, and has been marketed on a purpose designed 6 x 6 MZKT-6922 wheeled vehicle. Images depict stowed configuration (Kupol JSC images).
An SA-15B Russian radar is offloaded at the 354th Logistics Readiness Squadron supply warehouse April 21, 2011, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The radar emulates foreign surface-to-air and anti-aircraft artillery threats. The radar will be transported to the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex where it will provide RED FLAG-Alaksa participants training opportunities. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Laura Goodgame).
This appears to be the first image of the 9A332 Tor M2E weapon system deployed on the tracked Metrovagonmash GM569 chassis, common to the 9K37 Buk M/M1 / SA-11/17 Gadfly / Grizzly SOU / 9A310 TELAR. The GM569 is shorter than the GM5955 used with the earlier production 9A331 TLAR on the Tor / Tor M/M1 series. The use of the SA-15B label is unusual, insofar as this variant has the third evolution of the missile and an entirely new radar package. The search radar does not appear to be fitted with the IFF antenna, and the turret design appears to be of the older Tor M/M1 configuration.
Tor M1 / SA-15 Gauntlet hosted on the Metrovagonmash GM5955 tracked chassis.
SA-15C Gauntlet of the PLA deployed with search radar fully elevated.
The Ranzhir E/M is available in a lower cost truck variant, intended for applications where high road mobility is important. For instance a wheeled Tor M2E battery would used the wheeled variant to match the high road speed of the TLARs.
The tracked variant of the Ranzhir series is based on a modified MT-LBu chassis and is typically used with the earlier tracked variants of the system.
Kasta 2E1 Flat Face E UHF Band Acquisition Radar. This is a modern digital replacement for the P-19 Flat Face.
Kasta 2E2 Squat Eye E deployed.
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