Rostec unveiled an export version of the Russian Instrument Design Bureau (KBP)-designed integrated gun and surface-to-air missile (SAM) naval weapon system Pantsir-M, designated Pantsir-ME, at the International Maritime Defence Show (IMDS) in St Petersburg.
Pantsir-ME is a fully automated pedestal-mounted close-in weapon system (CIWS) that can carry two six-barrel 30 mm guns and eight infrared guided missiles, equally split on either side of the turret superstructure. A tracking radar antenna with a centrally mounted electro-optic suite completes the gun/missile combined armament suite. Each system is capable of engaging four targets simultaneously and can operate independently, as well as within a battery of up to four modules.
The system, developed by High Precision Systems’ KBP – part of Rostec State Corporation – is described by Rostec CEO Sergey Chemezov as “an evolution of the Kashtan and Kashtan-M”, having probability of kill “three-to-four times higher than its predecessor [Kashtan-M], with a reaction time [upon threat detection] of 3-5 seconds”.
The two navalised versions of the weapon, Pantsir-M for domestic market and Pantsir-ME for exports, appear to be derivatives of the land-based Pantsir-S system. Rostec claims that the ship-based versions are the only CIWSs currently available that “combine [a gun plus the SAM armament] and an integrated radar-optical armament control system in a single turret mount”.
According to the manufacturer, the Pantsir-ME is compatible with the Hermes-K missile, providing a maximum engagement range of 20 km (10.8 n miles) for targets at altitudes 0.002 km and 15 km, and a minimum range of 1.2 km. The combined use of radar and optical control systems provides an all-weather 24/7 operation capability.
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