The combat laser system has been named after a great Russian hero Peresvet, both a monk and a warrior who lived in the XIV century and was later canonized as a great saint. The root of the name – svet – means “light”, which all in all makes the name a perfect fit. It accurately denotes both – the characteristics of the weapons system and its application.
Little is known about the combat laser system. Officials don’t go into details and would not be specific either about its characteristics, or plans for its use.
The Peresvet is intended to be a part of air defense system. It can locate and track air targets and attack them with a laser beam. Experts would also point out that a high-power light beam can disrupt operations of the enemy's optical and electronic systems or even destroy them.
It implies that equipped with a source of high-power emission, the Peresvet is capable of damaging not only aircraft's optical systems but also its structural elements and weapons. A beam in fact hits the target destrying equipment inside or causing the explosion of ammunition.
The Peresvet can be used against attack aircraft, unmanned flying objects, air-to-surface weapons, or any target equipped with optical system. The latest and the newest, the Peresvet is the first air defense laser obtained by the military.
At present, defense companies are upgrading the Peresvet system, which may result in boosting its operational characteristics thanks to reducing the number of support vehicles. The task can be solved through creating 'combined' hardware and semi-trailers that can at once carry several systems that so far are based on several vehicles. Russia's RIA Novosti news agency reported in June that the Astais company from Naberezhnyye Chelny specializing in special equipment had created a shelter-carrier for the Peresvet system.
According to official sources, some the Peresvet systems have already been put operational. Simultaneously, the system is being modernized to further improve its core characteristics.
Combat laser technologies hold huge potential in the air and space defense. Missiles are constantly upgraded. They are capable of maneuvering, skidding ballistic trajectory and flying at a rather high speed. It would seem that counter-missiles should be need to be built to destroy them. But that would require additional and large budget spending without a 100% guarantee of success.
Meanwhile, combat lasers are much cheaper both in terms of production and operation. They use cyclic accumulation for firing and their accuracy allows them to hit and destroy missile’s core systems and elements.
Many countries are trying to develop advanced weapons using new physical principles. In particular, the United States has already created similar pilot systems that intended to destroy troops and light-armored vehicles.
However, foreign experts believe that Russia's Peresvet combat laser system enjoys an advantage over U.S. laser weapons. There is every reason to believe that Russia is one step ahead at least where we need it most, says Yury Borisov, Deputy Prime Minister for Defense Industry and former Russian Deputy Defense Minister.
The Russian Armed Forces have already received an absolutely new weapons and will continue to get advanced equipment. But the crucial thing is that the protection of Russia's national interests should not pose a threat to anyone, and the Peresvet system is exactly this kind of military technologies.