What's new

Featured Iranian Bavar-373 long range air defence system- A quantum leap in Iran's air defence capability

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
Author: Philosopher
Category: Air defence


EFDqcAmWwAYwrG-.jpg


In 2007, an Iran with a very limited air defence network signed a contract with the Russians for the S-300 air defence system to help protect its air space from a potential airstrike. That deal ended up being embroiled in the tense political environment of that time and as a consequence, Iran did not receive that system (and would not until 2016).

Iran decided to embark upon a very difficult endeavor of designing its own long range air defence system called the Bavar-373 (meaning Belief-373). The start of the Bavar-373 projects was initiated with the slogan of "Ma mitavanim", which translates to "We can do it".

The development of this systems involved a great learning path, during which Iran produced multiple long range air defence systems, namely the 3rd of Khordad (which downed the American RQ-4) and 15th of Khordad.[1,2] In 2019, after more than 10 years in development, the wholly indigenous Iranian Bavar-373 became ready for production. In this thread, we will go over its capabilities.

Test Firing of the Bavar-373


Overall specifications of the Bavar-373 system[3]:
Maximum detection range: 320 km
Maximum tracking range: 260 km
Maximum engagement range: 200 km
Maximum engagement altitude: 27 km
Simultaneously detected targets: 300
Simultaneously tracked targets: 60
Simultaneously engaged targets: 6
Simultaneously guided missiles: 12
Maximum missiles per battery: 24


A battery of Bavar-373 includes 1 Acquisition radar, 1 engagement radar, 1 command and control, 6 TEL (each with 4 missiles) for a total of 24 missiles ready to fire.

photo_2019-08-22_09-23-30.jpg

A battery of Bavar-373 missile defence system[4]

Now, to go into more specific details regarding this system.

Missiles:

Bavar 373 utilises a missile called Sayyad-4. This missiles incorporates Trust Vector Control (TVS) and has a range of 200km and maximum engagement altitude of 27-30km.[3] The maximum speed of the missile is not known, however, it is capable of dealing with air targets flying at speeds up to 2800 meter/second ( around Mach 8). This missile has the ability (albeit limited) to also target ballistic missiles during their terminal phase.[3]

The missile is believed to be guided via Semi-Active seeker utilising Track Via Missiles (TVM) or Seeker Aided Ground Guidance (SAGG). The use of such a system over an active seeker provides the benefit of 1) Extra protection against jamming 2) Better capability against stealthy targets.[5]

Iranian_missile_web_8_t715.jpg

Sayyad-4 missile[3]

upload_2019-9-17_13-46-53.png

Sayyad-4 during manufacturing stage.[3]


upload_2019-9-17_13-48-36.png

Thrust vector jet vanes will be inserted here.[3]

Screen Shot 2020-06-08 at 20.24.46.png

Sayyad-4 Trust vectoring during flight.[3]


Launch platform:

Bavar-373 uses the hot-launch method, where the missile engines are ignited whilst the missile is still inside the container tubes, as opposed to a cold launched systems where ignition is formed post gas instrumented ejection from the tube (such as in the S-300/400 series).[3]

771A8473.jpg

784334_954.jpg

The boxed vertical launch systems of the Bavar-373.



The Bavar-373 TEL uses the Iranian made "Zoljanah" 10x10 truck [5]:

EFFrmi2W4AA9t2J.jpg


EC6INOCWwAAapMk.jpg

Zoljanah 10x10 TEL[5]


Radar Systems


X-Band AESA radar
One of the radar systems used in the Bavar-373 is the X-Band AESA engagement radar. This radar is comprised of over 10,000 Transmit/Receive Modules (TRM). It has an engagement range of 200km and can direct 12 missiles to 6 targets simultaneously.[3]

Hassan-Rouhani-Amir-Hatami-Alireza-Sabahifard-Mojtaba-Zolnour.jpg

On the left: The X-band AESA engagement radar.[2]

What is interesting about this radar system is its rather "3D" configuration. Although not officially confirmed, these angled potential subarrays seen below in Yellow could be part of a constructive wave interference method leading to increased power gain and range. Other possibilities for what they could be include: Side Lobe Cancelling (SLC) or data links.[5]

bavarxarrayedited.png

Bavar's X-band radar array, with main components highlighted. Main array in Red, possible sub-arrays in Yellow, and Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) array in Blue.[5]


S-Band AESA Radar
This S-band AESA radar can detect 300 targets at a range of 320km and can track up to 60 targets at a range of 260km.[3]


EFDqcy_XUAEHUdk.jpg

784410_440.jpg

784409_604.jpg

S-Band radar, the main array on the bottom and top portion is the Identification Friend or Foe (IFF)[3]

The TEL used for both of these radars is the Iranian Zafar 8x8 truck, shown below during its tests:

zafar.jpg

Zafar 8x8[5]

How will Bavar-373 deal with stealthly targets?

The article below highlights very nicely how Bavar-373, using TVM/SAGG and bi-static radar arrangement methodology will deal with stealthy targets, such as F-22.[5]

If Bavar uses a SAGG/TVM guidance method as expected, the presence of a separate S-band acquisition radar points to what is called a bi-static radar arrangement for engaging stealth targets. The S-band radar may not necessarily partake in this directly, but is still essential for its operation.

Bi-static arrangements work by placing a radar receiver closer to the target than the emitter, allowing it to pick up the signal without the signal having to return to the emitter. This is advantageous because when the receiver is closer to the target, it has a higher chance of picking up a weak signal or a more accurate one. The problem arises when X-band tries to illuminate a stealth target - it does not generate a return at anything greater than short ranges, as most stealth aircraft are optimised against the X-band, owing to its accuracy and therefore wide use in engagement radars. That's where bi-static operation comes in.

The idea is that the better anti-stealth performance of the S-band radar will allow it to detect the stealth aircraft at relatively long range, further aided by higher-tier IADS assets like the S-band Meraj-4 and VHF Matla ul-Fajr 3. The missile is fired, with target coordinates fed into its INS and updated periodically via a datalink. If the missile has a dual-band SAGG receiver (aka one that receives both X-band and S-band radar waves), it can be guided more accurately (with the bi-static effect) if the S-band radar has some illumination capability. This however is not essential, but does make the system more robust.

But S-band radars are typically not accurate enough to guarantee a kill - that's why X-band radars are used in engagement radars. But as we know, X-band radars are not usually effective against stealth aircraft. Under normal circumstances, the system can see the target, but not kill it.

So once the S-band radar guides the missile to the terminal stage - within about 5-10 km - the interception switches to X-band. Within 5 km the missile's radar receiver will likely be able to receive the X-band waves that are illuminating the target, even if the X-band radar itself is not receiving them. That's why another name for these extreme examples of the bi-static concept is "blind illumination". The (X-band) radar itself is "blind". It is not receiving any return from the stealth aircraft which is say, 120 km away. But the missile and crucially, its radar receiver, is only 5 km away. It is close enough to receive the X-band radar waves being reflected back from the target. The rest is simple - with an X-band return, the missile is able to close down the target and destroy it accurately. That's how the bi-static effect can be exploited to destroy stealth targets.


The significance of Bavar-373

Bavar-373 marked a new chapter in the development of Iranian air defence solutions. It is important to note that this system is not solitary but one that will work within the context of an integrated air defence network utilising radars with ranges far beyond those used in Bavar-373 proper. For example, an auxiliary radar system that will be used in a Bavar battalion will be the Meraj-4 linear S-band linear AESA radar with a 450-500km range.[6,7] The future improvements of the Bavar will naturally turn it into an even more capable system. More on this to come in the coming years.

Although the purpose of this thread is not to do a comparison between this system and comparable foreign air defences, it is important to note that Bavar puts Iran amongst only a handful of nations which have such complex land based air defence systems that possess such a capability. Perhaps most importantly, the development of Bavar showed that a nation can develop such a systems by itself if it has the belief; as demonstrated by Iran's Ma Mitavanim (we can do it) slogan which in the end turned into Ma Tavanestim (we did it).


I would like to thank @AmirPatriot for his article at Irangeomil and @PeeD for their great contribution to the compilation of the Bavar-373 data via OSINT gathering. Without their effort, this article would have been nigh impossible.

References:

[1] https://www.tasnimnews.com/en/news/...khordad-3-air-defense-missile-downed-us-drone
[2] https://en.mehrnews.com/photo/146222/15th-of-Khordad-air-defense-system-unveiled
[3] https:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9I53NcfXag
[4] https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/iran/bavar-373.htm
[5] https://irangeomil.blogspot.com/2019/08/irans-bavar-373-profile.html
[6] https://www.mashreghnews.ir/news/363390/آشنایی-با-3-سامانه-پدافندی-که-ایران-به-جای-اس-300-رونمایی-کرد
[7] https://www.tasnimnews.com/en/news/...y-commander-lauds-iranian-air-defense-systems
 
Last edited:

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
@Indos This was a relatively "quick" article (took 3 hours) I put together. Let me what you think of it and if you would like to see more of these sort of articles.
 

Indos

PDF THINK TANK: ANALYST
Jul 25, 2013
11,219
21
15,445
Country
Indonesia
Location
Indonesia
@Indos This was a relatively "quick" article (took 3 hours) I put together. Let me what you think of it and if you would like to see more of these sort of articles.
Yup, I think we would like to know more about Iranian missile and radar capability, it would be a great read if there are other information that you can put on.
 

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
Yup, I think we would like to know more about Iranian missile and radar capability, it would be a great read if there are other information that you can put on.
Very good, I will put the radar write up next on my list. Regarding the missiles, that would be a great one. It will be the most complex given the large number of missiles Iran fields, but it will be a fun write up.
 

kaevmaan

FULL MEMBER

New Recruit

Feb 27, 2020
29
0
17
Country
Pakistan
Location
Pakistan
what about development,unit and operational costs?
is it 100% homegrown?
is it better than s 400?
did Iran sell Khordad 15 to Pakistan?
 
Last edited:

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
what about development,unit and operational costs?
The cost has not been stated directly but they have stated it is cheaper than the S-300 series.

is it 100% homegrown?
Yes it is indigenous.

is it better than s 300?
It is better than the S-300 series, but inferior to the S-400.

did Iran sold Khordad 15 to Pakistan?
I do not have any sources to suggest this. Hopefully once the arms embargo is lifted, we will see much more cooperation between Iran and our Pakistani brothers in the air defence field (and military in general).

You're welcome. I hope you found it a good read.
 

PDF

STAFF
May 1, 2015
2,879
10
4,162
Country
Pakistan
Location
Pakistan
Very good, I will put the radar write up next on my list. Regarding the missiles, that would be a great one. It will be the most complex given the large number of missiles Iran fields, but it will be a fun write up.
You can divide it in parts... It will help readers keeping interest in reading compact pieces rather than long or exhausting post. Looking forward to it.
 

[--Leo--]

FULL MEMBER
Aug 4, 2011
426
0
160
If Iran can develop it with any help from outside world then one sentence for Pakistani engineer (Doob k mar jao)
 

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
You can divide it in parts... It will help readers keeping interest in reading compact pieces rather than long or exhausting post. Looking forward to it.
Thank you for your comment. That sounds like a good plan. I will divide the articles into multiple parts.
 

Sina-1

FULL MEMBER
Sep 15, 2016
941
1
3,224
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
Sweden
The cost has not been stated directly but they have stated it is cheaper than the S-300 series.
The cost to produce Bavar 373 is cheaper than the price for the S-300, however Iran has no idea what the cost for producing s-300 is, so there we have no comparison. However, it would be logical that experienced Russians have rationalised the production of their air-defence systems much more than Iran has, and thus produce them at much lower cost. There is no way of knowing for sure, but still quite probable.

ps. great piece you've written!
 

Philosopher

SENIOR MEMBER
Jan 5, 2020
3,514
16
9,241
Country
Iran, Islamic Republic Of
Location
United Kingdom
The cost to produce Bavar 373 is cheaper than the price for the S-300, however Iran has no idea what the cost for producing s-300 is, so there we have no comparison. However, it would be logical that experienced Russians have rationalised the production of their air-defence systems much more than Iran has, and thus produce them at much lower cost. There is no way of knowing for sure, but still quite probable.

ps. great piece you've written!
I will have to revisit the video of the defence official to hear exactly what he said, but from what I recall, it was either 1/2 or 1/3 of the S-300. Naturally, as long as it is cheaper for Iran to build these vs the price of importing comparable systems then such projects are economical in the long run. Moreover, as Iran matures these technologies further and mass produces them, they will continue to get even cheaper.

Glad you enjoyed it the article.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 1, Members: 0, Guests: 1)


Top Bottom