The BUK missile system is a set of medium range surface-to-air missile systems which were first developed in the Soviet Union and continue to be produced by Russia.
Designed to take out cruise missiles, aircraft, helicopters and short range ballistic missiles, they can reach altitudes of up to 25km (15.5 miles or 82,000ft), according to the manufacturer’s website.
Developed by Moscow firm Almaz-Antey, they are thought to have been used during the Russian war with Georgia in the territory of South Ossetia in 2008.
The manufacturer’s website, which also lists military equipment including radar and naval missile systems, displays two models of Buk launchers — the Buk-M1-2 and the Buk-M2E.
A description of the Buk-M1-2, which has an altitude target range of up to 25km (15.5 miles or 82,000ft), reads: “The ”Buk-M1-2” ADMC is designed to provide air defence for troops and facilities against attacks from current and future high-speed manoeuvring tactical and strategic aircraft, attack helicopters including hovering helicopters, and tactical ballistic, cruise, and air-to-air missiles, in conditions of heavy radio jamming and counter fire; as well as to destroy water and ground surface targets.”
Meanwhile, the Buk-M2E “is designed to destroy tactical and strategic aircraft, helicopters, cruise missiles, and other aerodynamic aircraft at any point in their range of operation, along with tactical ballistic and aircraft missiles, and smart air bombs in conditions of heavy enemy counter fire and radio jamming; as well as to attack water and ground surface contrast targets.”
The ground-to-air explosive can also take out multiple targets in one launch.
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