Iran Upgrades Missile Defense System

Iran has optimized its Russian-made, S-200 long-range missile defense system and reduced its firing time, an Iranian air force general said.

Brig. Gen. Farzad Esmaveeli told the semi-official Fars news agency Tuesday the quicker reaction time from detection to firing has enhanced the country's air defense capabilities, enabling it to defend larger areas from bomb attack.

The system is capable of detecting objects within a 3,000-kilometer (1,864.2-mile) range, has the ability to adjust its altitude and can target aircraft heading to Iran from distances farther than Qatar or Afghanistan, the news agency said.

The missile defense system has medium- to high-altitude surface-to-air missiles. Each missile is powered by four solid-fuel, strap-on rocket boosters and uses radio illumination mid-course correction to fly toward a target with a terminal semi-active radar homing phase, the agency said.

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