MIM-104 Patriot

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A Patriot missile is fired.

The MIM-104 Patriot Missile system is a surface-to-air missile which is used against aircraft and missiles at all altitudes. PATRIOT is the acronym for Phased Array Tracking Radar to Intercept Of Target. (A more far-fetched abbreviation is Protection Against Threats, Real, Imagined, Or Theorized.) It was designed by Raytheon as an anti-aircraft missile, but its primary role today is ballistic missile defense. Each battery costs about $1 billion, and a single missile can cost several million dollars. A single battery has 8 launchers and can launch up to 16 missiles.[1]

As a mobile system, it takes about 25 minutes to set up once it reaches the launch site. By contrast, the Russian S-400 takes 5 minutes.

The missile system has been sold to over 15 countries, including Taiwan, Israel, Kuwait, Germany, Poland, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, and Japan.

In May 2023, video evidence showed a Patriot Missile battery had been destroyed at the Kyiv airport by a Russian Kinzhal hypersonic missile[2] The missile battery fired off some 31 Patriot missiles at a cost of $3 million each in less than 2 minutes in an effort to avoid having its ammunition stocks hit.[3]. However Western propaganda sources claimed the launchers had been only damaged[4][5], and supposedly repaired several days later[6].

Development

In 1976, the Armys SAM-D (Surface-to-Air Missile, Development) program was renamed the PATRIOT program. The tests at the White Sands Missile Range were successful, and the Patriot was deployed in 1984. Although it served for a while as an anti-aircraft system, it was upgraded in 1984 and changed to an anti-ballistic missile weapon.

See also

References

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