According to Interfaks, Air Forces Deputy CINC, General-Major Viktor Bondarev told journalists yesterday that another air defense regiment will be reequipped with the S-400 this fall.
He didn’t mention a deployment location, or exactly when the regiment would go on combat duty. This would be Russia’s third operational S-400 regiment.
The second regiment reportedly started combat duty on 15 May at Dmitrov, north of Moscow.
The first two regiments have four battalions between them, each battalion with 8 or more launchers.
In 2010, the Defense Ministry said it was buying 5 battalions of S-400s. This seems to make sense with two battalions entering service in the first half of 2011, and two more possibly in the second half. The first two S-400 battalions – at Elektrostal – were likely bought in 2006-2007.
The plan is to buy 56 battalions worth of S-400s under GPV-2020.
It’s interesting to note that the previous, abandoned GPV-2015 (designed by Defense Minister, then Deputy Prime Minister, Sergey Ivanov) called for acquiring 23 S-400 battalions by 2015. The press often reports these 23 battalions as a pared-down 18, but the original goal was in fact 23.
So who’s really responsible for breaking the GPV (and GOZ)?