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Priority for Ukraine: Expert explains how multilevel air defense works

Priority for Ukraine: Expert explains how multilevel air defense works Expert explains how multilevel air defense works (Kongsberg)

With last year's onset of mass strikes on Ukraine's critical infrastructure, Western partners raised the issue of providing multilevel protection against various aerial threats for the first time, as Defense Express military expert Valerii Riabykh told RBC-Ukraine.

In April 2023, former Minister of Defense Oleksii Reznikov identified making a multilevel air defense system as a priority for Ukraine. The protection of Ukrainian facilities and people both in the rear and on the front line depends on it.

What is a multilevel air defense system

These systems consist of several levels, each with its own functions and tasks.

First level

The first level includes detection means, radars capable of timely recognizing the enemy using certain weapons. According to Riabykh, it also includes satellite systems and other sensors that allow detecting preparation or launch of missiles, or aircraft takeoff.

"For example, when they see the takeoffs of Russian missile carriers MiG-31K and Tu-22M3, they sound the alarm for us. This means that the first level is working, and our air defense system is preparing to repel attacks," explained Riabykh.

Second level

The second level includes attack prevention systems, such as radar, infrared guidance, and fire control.

Third level

It involves interception and destruction systems. For example, anti-aircraft missile complexes, anti-aircraft guns, and other means.

Electronic warfare means, which can suppress or manipulate the coordinates of guided missiles and drones, are part of the echeloned air defense.

How the multilevel air defense system works

All the above-mentioned levels must be integrated into the data exchange system. Another important task is automation to minimize manual work.

Air defense for Ukraine

Air defense remains a priority for Ukrainian partners' assistance. It has repeatedly become one of the main topics of discussion during the Ramstein meetings.

As President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said, Russia may intensify energy terrorism against the country this winter. Meanwhile, Ukraine is asking allies for air defense systems only for winter amid possible attacks.