Moscow: Russia's new medium-range Vityaz air defence system will replace the out-dated S-300PS systems by 2014, former chief designer of Almaz-Antei corporation, Igor Ashurbeyli, has said.
"Vityaz should be ready to enter service in 2013-2014," Ashurbeyli said in an exclusive interview with Russian media. "Only the insufficient funding of the testing of a new missile for this system could cause a delay."
The Vityaz is expected to replace the out-dated S-300PS systems, whose service life is coming to an end in the next two years.
The term 'Vityaz' refers to a Russian knight who is victorious in battle.
According to Ashurbeyli, the new system will have more advanced radar and a launcher with 16 missiles compared to only four on the S-300.
He pointed out that the service life of the S-300PS systems, which, along with the more modern S-400 Triumf systems protect Moscow and other strategic targets, will expire in the next year or two, but the new Vityaz system was yet to be readied to replace it.