S-75M Volkhov (NATO: SA-2C Guideline)
anti-aircraft rocket system
In 1956 it was decided that the SA-75 Dvina should be improved. It was a beginning of works on the next system named the Desna. Its mobility was increased by using the trucks tugged trailers. Some changes were also introduced into a radar system. The Desna was introduced into service in 1959, but already in 1958, the works on its follower, the new S-75 Volhov started. It featured more precise homing system. After carrying out the range tests, it entered serial production and was introduced into service with the rocket units in 1962.
There is an unconfirmed assumption that the Volkhov was a destination system the Soviets developed through all the fifties, but faced a serious problem in designing a precise rockets homing methods. It resulted with introducing the less effective systems (the Dvina and Desna). Just at the beginnings of the 1960s they designed the homing system fulfilling their expectations.
The introduced improvements of the next, S-75 versions, allowed for fighting the high velocity air targets. The new solutions of the electronic system allowed for the rocket launching in circumstances of the opponent's active and passive clutters. A new automatic commanding system cabin, the Vector, was introduced. Several improvements aiming at increased range and the kind and number of the war heads, including the 15 kt TNT nuclear one was also introduced into the rocket.
The S-75 system based on the two stage rocket. The first, take-off stage (of 4,5 s. working time) was powered with the solid fuel engine, the second stage (of 50 s. working time) was powered with the liquid fuel sustainer engine. The horizontal range was 43 km, the vertical 30 km. The maximum velocity was 3,5 M. The S-75 guiding system based on the radio commands, sent by a homing station, tracing the target and the approaching rocket. The 190-197kg war head blast was initiated by a radio proximity fuse or by signal from the commanding post. A self destroying took place after passing a set flight time. The little known is the fact of capability of fighting the water or surface targets. The complex co-operated with the P-12 warning radar. The system was utilised for use in a different climate zones. The continuous improvements in seeking and homing systems allowed for fighting the low flying targets, by decreasing the strike altitude from 500 until 100 metres. To make the system active and passive clutter-proof, and the anti-radar rocket strikes proof a few countermeasures (first the observers cabin, later a TV camera) were introduced.
The S-75 Dvina system was introduced into the Polish aerospace defence system in 1963. Later it was complemented with the S-75 M Volkhov. The both systems were written off the service in the nineties. In 1995 Russians issued a proposal to the S-75 operators, of utilising the system to the modern war requirements.