"Latvia" Former Soviet Union Military Bases
Lībciems Soviet Union S-200 SA-5 Gammon Medium to High Altitude Missiles –
Missiles that could have been found at Libciems Soviet Union S-200 SA-5 Gammon Medium to High Altitude Missile
Lat: N57.27490, Lon: E021.46640 
Notice: This site is now located on private properly is posted and is now blocked off with a locked barrier.
Located north of Užava, Latvia,
Mitti, Lībciems, Latvia
Soviet Union S-200 SA-5 Gammon Medium to High Altitude Missiles  
S-200 “NATO: SA-5 Gammon”
S-300P “NATO: SA-10 Grumble”
S-300V “NATO: SA-12A Gladiator, SA-12B Giant”.
La-17 Unmanned Aerial Target
Country: Russia
Warhead: 215kg High Explosive
Basing: Land  
S-200 “NATO: SA-5 Gammon” 
Model of the S-200 missile "Vega" on its launcher S-200 Vega "SA-5b", with the V-870 missile, range increased to 300km "186 miles" and ceiling to 40km "125,000 feet" with the new, shorter missile and solid fuel motor.
S-300P “NATO: SA-10 Grumble” 
The S-300P (transliterated from Russian С-300П, [NATO] reporting name SA-10 Grumble) is the original version of the S-300 system which became operational in 1978. In 1987 over 80 of these sites were active, mainly in the area around Moscow. The P suffix stands for PVO-Strany "Country Air Defense System". An S-300PT unit consists of a 36D6 [NATO] reporting name "TIN SHIELD" surveillance radar, a 30N6 "FLAP LID" fire control system and 5P85-1
launch vehicles. The 5P85-1 vehicle is a semi-trailer truck. Usually a 76N6 "CLAM SHELL" low altitude detection radar is also a part of the unit.
This system broke substantial new ground, including the use of a phased array radar and multiple engagements on the same Fire-Control System (FCS). Nevertheless, it had some limitations. It took over one hour to set up this semi-mobile system for firing and the hot vertical launch method employed scorched the TEL.
It was originally intended to fit the Track via Missile "TVM" Guidance System onto this model. However, the TVM system had problems tracking targets below 500 m. Rather than accept the limitation, the Soviets decided that the tracking of low altitude targets was a must and decided to use a pure command-guidance system until the TVM head was ready. This allowed the minimum engagement altitude to be set at 25 meters.
Improvements to the S-300P have resulted in several major subversions for both the internal and the export market. The S-300PT-1 and S-300PT-1A "SA-10b/c" are incremental upgrades of the original S300PT system. They introduce the 5V55KD missile and the cold launch method thereafter employed. Time to readiness was reduced to 30 minutes "broadly comparable to Patriot" and trajectory optimizations allowed the 5V55KD to reach a range of 75km.
The S-300PS/S-300PM – Russian "С-300ПC/С-300ПМ", [NATO] reporting name "SA-10d/e" was introduced in 1985 and is the only version thought to have been fitted with a nuclear warhead. This model saw the introduction of the modern TEL and mobile radar and command-post vehicles that were all based on the MAZ-7910 8 × 8 truck. This model also featured the new 5V55R missiles which increased maximum engagement range to 90km ?56 miles" and introduced terminal semi-active radar homing "SARH" guidance mode. The surveillance radar of these systems was designated 30N6. Also introduced with this version was the distinction between self-propelled and towed TELs. The towed TEL is designated 5P85T. Mobile TELs were the 5P85S and 5P85D. The 5P85D was a "slave" TEL, being controlled by a 5P85S "master" TEL. The "master" TEL is identifiable thanks to the large equipment container behind the cabin; in the "slave" TEL this area is not enclosed and is used for cable or spare tyre storage.
The next modernization, called the S-300PMU – Russian "С-300ПМУ", US DoD designation "A-10f" was introduced in 1992 for the export market and featured the upgraded 5V55U missile which still utilized the intermediate SARH terminal guidance method and smaller warhead of the 5V55R but increased the engagement envelope to give this missile roughly the same range and altitude capabilities as the newer 48N6 missile "max. range 150km/93 miles". The radars were also upgraded, with the surveillance radar for the S-300PMU being designated 64N6 "BIG BIRD" and the illumination and guidance radar being designated "30N6-1" in the GRAU index.
S-300P Total produced: 3000 launchers, 28,000 missiles for the S-300P.
(TEL)A Transporter Erector Launcher
A transporter erector launcher "TEL" is a vehicle with an integrated prime mover that can carry, elevate to firing position and launch one or more missiles. Such vehicles exist for both surface-to-air missiles and surface-to-surface missiles. Early such missiles were launched from fixed sites and had to be loaded onto trucks for transport, making them more vulnerable to attack since once they were spotted by the enemy they couldn't easily be relocated, and if they were it often took hours or even days to prepare them for launch once they reached their new site.
A transporter erector launcher and radar "TELAR" is the same as a TEL but also incorporates part or all of the radar system necessary for firing the missile(s). Such vehicles have the capability of being autonomous, greatly enhancing their effectiveness. With this type of system each vehicle can fight regardless of the state or presence of support vehicles. The TEL or TELAR may have a rotating turntable that it can use to aim the missiles. The vehicle may have to turn to aim the missiles or they may fire straight up.
Conversely, a transporter launcher and radar "TLAR" is the same as a TELAR without the erector capability "presumably because the missile does not need to be erected for launch".
Usually a number of TELs and TELARs are linked to one Command post vehicle "CP" or "CPV". They may utilize target information from Target acquisition, designation and guidance radar "TADAGR" or, simply, TAR.
The Patriot missile system uses the abbreviation MEL "Mobile Erector Launchers" as a towed launch vehicle.
S-300V [NATO]: "SA-12A Gladiator", "SA-12B Giant”. 
The 9K81 S-300V Antey-300 – Russian "9К81 С-300В Антей-300" – named after Antaeus, [NATO] reporting name "SA-12 Gladiator/Giant" varies from the other designs in the series. It was built by Antey as opposed to Almaz. The V suffix stands for Voyska "ground forces". It was designed to act as the top tier army air defense system, providing a defence against ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft, replacing the SA-4 "Ganef". The "GLADIATOR" missiles have a maximum engagement range of around 75 km (47 mi) while the "GIANT" missiles can engage targets out to 100 km (62 mi) and up to altitudes of around 32km "100,000 feet". In both cases the warhead is around 150kg "331 pounds".
While it was created from the same project hence the common "S-300 designation" different priorities resulted in a design quite different from the other versions. The S-300V system is carried on tracked MT-T transporters, which gives it better cross-country mobility than even the S-300Ps on 8 × 8 wheeled transporters. It is also somewhat more distributed than the S-300P's. For example, while both have mechanically-scanning radar for target acquisition "9S15 BILL BOARD A", the battery level 9S32 GRILL PAN has an autonomous search ability and SARH delegated to illumination radar on TELARs. The early 30N6 FLAP LID on the S-300P handles tracking and illumination, but is not equipped with an autonomous search capability "later upgraded".
The S-300V places a greater emphasis on the ABM, with the dedicated 9M82 "SA-12B Giant" Anti-Ballistic missile. This missile is larger and only two can be held on each TELAR. It also has a dedicated ABM radar – the 9S19 HIGH SCREEN phased array radar at battalion level. A typical S-300V battalion is made up out of a target detection and designation unit, guidance radar and up to 6 TELARs. The detection and designation unit consists of the 9S457-1 command post, a 9S15MV or 9S15MT BILL BOARD all-round surveillance radar and 9S19M2 HIGH SCREEN sector surveillance radar. The S-300V uses the 9S32-1 GRILL PAN multi-channel guidance radar. Four types of missile-launcher vehicles can be used with the system: 
  • Transporter erector and radar "TELAR" vehicles, which not only transport the missiles, but also fire and guide them. There are two models: the 9A83-1 TELAR holding four 9M83 GLADIATOR missiles and the 9A82 TELAR holding two 9M82 GIANT missiles.
  • Launcher/loader vehicles "LLV", which transport the missiles and can reload the TELARs, and also fire missiles under the control of a TELAR. There are two models: the 9A84 LLV holding two 9M83 GLADIATOR missiles and the 9A85 LLV holding two 9M82 GIANT missiles. 
S-300V system may be controlled by an upper level command post system 9S52 Polyana-D4 integrating it with Buk missile system into a brigade.
Tu-154 Russian Commercial Airlines
Siberia Airlines Flight 1812
Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 crashed over the Black Sea on 4 October 2001, en route from Tel Aviv, Israel to Novosibirsk, Russia. The plane, a Soviet-made Tupolev Tu-154, carried an estimated 66 passengers and 12 crew members. No one on board survived. The crash site is some 190 km west-southwest of the Black Sea resort of Sochi and 140 km north of the Turkish coastal town of Fatsa and 350 km east-southeast of Feodosiya, Ukraine.
Initial Information 
The Russian ground control center in Sochi suddenly lost contact with the airliner. Soon, the pilot of an Armenian plane crossing the sea nearby reported seeing the Russian plane explode before it crashed into the sea about 13:45hrs
Moscow time "09:45hrs GMT".
Initial Reaction
Occurring less than a month after the 11 September 2001 attacks, the crash was initially thought to be an act of terrorism. Nicholas Esterhazy, in an editorial in the Johns Hopkins Newsletter, speculated that, while Israeli and Russian intelligence immediately suspected a terrorist attack, US intelligence reported that the crash was due to an errant S-200 "also known in the West as an SA-5 Gammon" surface to air missile fired as part of a Ukrainian Air Defense Forces exercise staged off Cape Onuk or "Chuluk" in Crimea. Esterhazy considered this hypothesis unlikely due to the missile's range and safety-features. He noted that the missile, with a range of 240km "150 miles" could not have struck the plane which was more than 320 km away from the missile launch site. 
Russian officials initially dismissed the American claim as "unworthy of attention, "and Russian President Vladimir Putin told the press the next day that "the weapons used in those exercises had such characteristics that make it impossible for them to reach the air corridor through which the plane was moving. "Ukrainian military officials initially denied that their missile had brought down the plane; they reported that the S-200 had been launched seawards and had successfully self-destructed. Indeed, Defense Ministry spokesman Konstantin Khivrenko noted that "neither the direction nor the range (of the missiles) correspond to the practical or theoretical point at which the plane exploded."
Subsequent Investigation
The following investigation conducted by Russian Air Safety officials discovered that the wreckage bore damage similar to that caused by the distinctive spherical shrapnel produced by the S-200. The timing of both the launch and the crash were also reported to match.
Nonetheless, the Ukrainian military at first insisted that the launch was completed according to the exercise plan, supported by video shot from the command post. However, the government of Ukraine officially recognized its military's fault in the accident later and started negotiating compensation payments for victims' relatives.
On 20 November 2003, the compensation agreement was signed between the governments of Ukraine and Israel. It was later ratified by the relatives of the victims who agreed to the conditions. In addition to compensation issues, the agreement has stated that "Ukraine is not legally responsible for the accident that occurred to the plane and free of any obligations regarding it”. Commenting on the agreement, Gen. Oleksandr Kuz'muk, the ex-Minister of Defense sacked after the accident, told media that "the payments were a humane action, not the admittance of guilt".
Some Russian relatives of the crash victims refused to accept the compensation conditions offered by Ukraine. They brought a civil suit against the Ukrainian government to Pechers'ky local court in Kiev. During the court hearings, the
government representatives stated that the airplane "could not be brought down by a Ukrainian missile" according to the radar data. They also questioned the conclusions of the Russian-conducted investigation, calling them "mathematically modeled, but not proven by evidence". They argued that the Soviet-made Identification friend or foe system of the missile in question would have prevented it from striking the Soviet-made airliner. The lawyer representing the plaintiffs argued in media that the fault of the Ukrainian government was effectively proven by the fact that it negotiated the compensations for Israeli relatives of the victims.
On 21 June 2004, the spokesperson of Ukraine's General Prosecution Office stated that none of the 11 forensic examinations carried out so far have proven the fact of hitting the Tupolev-154 by a Ukrainian missile so the criminal investigation continued. 
                         Aeroflot Tupolev Tu-154M
The Tupolev Tu-154 – Russian: "Ту-154"; [NATO] reporting name: "Careless" is a three-engine medium-range narrow-body airliner designed in the mid 1960s and manufactured by Tupolev. As the workhorse of Soviet and "subsequently" Russian airlines for several decades, it serviced over a sixth of the world's landmass and carried half of all passengers flown by Aeroflot and its subsidiaries "137.5 million/year or 243.8 billion passenger kilometers in 1990". Having been exported and operated by 17 non-Russian airlines and a number of air forces, it remained the standard domestic route airliner of Russia and former Soviet states until the mid 2000s.
With a cruising speed of 975 kilometers per hour "606 mph", the Tu-154 is one of the fastest civilian aircraft in operation and has a range of 5,280 kilometers "3,280 miles". Capable of operating from unpaved and gravel airfields, it was widely used in extreme Arctic conditions of Russia's northern and eastern regions where other airliners were unable to operate and where service facilities were very basic. With a service life of 45,000 hours "18,000 cycles" but capable of 80,000 hours with upgrades, it is expected to continue operations until 2016, although noise regulations have seen services to western Europe and other areas restricted. In January 2010, Russian flag carrier Aeroflot announced the retirement of its Tu-154 fleet after 40 years of service with the last scheduled flight being Aeroflot Flight 736 from Ekaterinburg to Moscow on 31 December 2009. 
Since 1968 there have been 39 fatal incidents involving the Tu-154, most of which were caused either by factors unrelated to the aircraft or by its extensive use in demanding conditions. 
The Tu-154 was developed to meet Aeroflot's requirement to replace the jet-powered Tu-104, the Antonov An-10 'Ukraine' and the Ilyushin Il-18 turboprops. The requirements called for either a payload capacity of 16–18 tons "35,000–40,000 pounds" with a range of 2,850–4,000 kilometers "1,770–2,500 miles" while cruising at a speed of 900km/h "560 mph", or a payload of 5.8 tons "13,000 pounds" with a range of 5,800–7,000 kilometers "3,600–4,300 miles" while cruising at 850km/h "530 mph". A take-off distance of 2,600 meters "8,500 feet" at maximum take-off weight was also stipulated as a requirement. Conceptually similar to the British Hawker Siddeley Trident, which first flew in 1962, and the American Boeing 727, which first flew in 1963, the medium-range Tu-154 would be marketed by Tupolev at the same time as Ilyushin was marketing the long-range Ilyushin Il-62. The Soviet Ministry of Aircraft Industry chose the Tu-154 as it incorporated the latest in Soviet aircraft design and best met Aeroflot's anticipated requirements for the 1970s and 1980s. 
The first project chief was Sergey Yeger but in 1964, Dmitryi S. Markov assumed that position. In 1975 he turned it over to Aleksandr S. Shengardt. 
The Tu-154 first flew on 4 October 1968. The first deliveries to Aeroflot were in 1970 with freight "mail" services beginning in May 1971 and passenger services in February 1972. There was still limited production of the 154M model as of January 2009, despite previous announcements of the end of production in 2006. 1025 Tu-154s have been built, 214 of which are still in service as of 14 December 2009.
La-17 Unmanned Aerial Target 
                                                                                       Lavochkin La-17
The Lavochkin La-17 was the first Soviet unmanned aerial vehicle "UAV" to reach operational service. The first versions were developed in the early 1950s, and remained in service into the 1980s.
NPO Lavochkin "OKB-301", also called "Lavochkin Research and Production Association" or shortly "Lavochkin Association, LA" is a Russian aerospace company. It is a major player in the Russian space program, being the developer and manufacturer of the Fregat upper stage, as well as interplanetary probes such as Fobos-Grunt. Currently it is headed by Victor Khartov. Lavochkin is a state owned Aerospace and Defense Company. Semyon Lavochkin, Designer. Website http://www.laspace.ru - Russian Only
Early Development
The La-17 was designed by the Lavochkin design bureau, with work beginning in 1950. Flight tests began in 1953, with prototype drones carried on a Tupolev Tu-4 four-engine bomber. La-17 production began in 1956.
The La-17 was a jet drone of all-metal construction, with straight flight surfaces, and a jet engine carried in a nacelle under the fuselage. The initial variant, which was just known as the "La-17", was air-launched. and powered by a Bondaryuk RD-900 ramjet with 800 kgf "1,760 lbf" thrust. There was a "windmill" type electric generator in the nose to provide electric power. The La-17 was directed by radio control and simply "bellied in" to land, with the engine taking the abuse of the touchdown. The ramjet was strictly expendable and easily replaced. The drone could carry Luneburg lenses to give an enhanced radar signature.
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Revised: 01/26/2013 – 07:55:10