Get Ready, NATO: Russia's New Air Defense Tech (Think Missiles and Lasers) Looks Dangerous

Russia will start research and development (R&D) work on a new generation of surface-to-air missiles for its army in 2018. The research work will be used to inform a full-scale development effort that will start in 2020.

The new prospective new family of weapons—which the Russians have code-named “Standard”—would replace all of the Russian Ground Forces air defense missiles including the Tor, Buk and some versions of the S-300. However, the prospective new system would not replace the Russian Aerospace Forces’ air defense weapons such as the S-400 and the forthcoming S-500.

Why Aircraft Carriers (At Almost 100 Years Old) Still Dominate the Oceans

Fundamentally, the strength of a carrier depends most on the capabilities of its air wing. In the next decade, the aircraft launched from U.S. carriers will undergo considerable change. Most notably, the arrival of the F-35C (whatever the larger problems with the program) will increase the stealth, sensor capacity, and communications capabilities of the air wing. In combination with the EA-18 Growler, this will increase the lethality of the entire air wing.

The U.S. Army Wants A Super 'Bullet' To Kill Enemy Tanks

The weapon fires High-Explosive air burst rounds, close combat rounds, and then the general support rounds, like the smoke and battlefield elimination, developers said.

Airburst rounds use programmable fuse to explode in the air at a precise location, thereby maximizing the weapon's effect against enemy targets hiding, for example, behind a rock, tree or building.  

Nuclear Weapons: The Most Overrated Weapon of War?

But since World War II, the United States has eschewed the use of nuclear weapons, even against capable non-nuclear opponents.  Because of the deep political complexity associated with their employment, the weapons simply have too little battlefield and strategic impact for the US to seriously entertain their use.