Iran formally inducted the Bavar-373 air defence system into the military on August 22, 2019.
The indigenous long-range air defence missile system, Iran’s answer to the Russian S-300, is reported to have a range of 300 km and can strike targets at an altitude of 65 km.
Iran began to develop the Bavar-373, meaning “believe” and 373 which is the Abjad number of prophet Muhammad’s name, system after Russia suspended delivery in 2010 due to international sanctions that have barred it from importing many weapons – including at least five S-300s.
The Bavar-373 uses a vertical launch system and a long-range, phased array fire-control radar called Meraj-4. It can reportedly detect up to 100 targets, tracking 60 of them, and engage six concurrently.
The system uses up to three different missiles to hit targets at various altitudes.
Bavar’s subsystems include the Fakour commanding and smart control system which has the ability to collect information from all sources relevant to air defence, including passive and active radars (such as the Mersad), signal surveillance, missile systems and commanding and control systems.
Merai (Ascension), a phased array radar is used for tracking targets in medium to long ranges, mounted on the ZAFAR heavy truck. It has a range of 450 km which uses fuzzy logic techniques to spot targets and can track up to 200 targets simultaneously.
The Rasoul advanced communications system is for encoding information, connecting the country’s infrastructure and transferring radar information from the battle scene to commanding centres.
The first images of the system were released in August 2016 and it passed initial tests in January 2018. With the ‘unveiling’ on August 22, it is reported to have attained operational status.