Egyptian Air Defense Forces

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Egyptian Air Defense Command
قوات الدفاع الجوي
Active 1968 - Present
Country  Egypt
Branch Air Defense
Type Land Based Aerial Defense Network
Part of Egyptian Armed Forces
Garrison/HQ Alexandria, Egypt
Motto إيمان, عزم, مجد
Faith, Will, Glory
Anniversaries June, 30
Commander Of The Egyptian Air Defense Lt. Gen. Abd Al-Moniem Al-Terras
Chief of Air Defense Staff Maj. Gen. Abou-elmagd Ahmed Haroun
Flag Egypt Air Defense Flag.png
Insignia Egyptian Army ranks

The Egyptian Air Defense Command or EADC (Arabic: قوات الدفاع الجوي‎, Quwwat El-Difa' El-Gawwi), is Egypt's military command responsible for air defense, part of the Military of Egypt. Egypt patterned its Air Defense Force (ADF) after the Soviet Air Defence Forces, which integrated all its air defense capabilities – antiaircraft guns, rocket and missile units, interceptor planes, and radar and warning installations.

The Commander in Chief is Lieutenant General Abd Al-Moniem Al-Terras[1] and the Chief of Air Defense Staff is major general abou-elmagd ahmed haroun. The Egyptian air defense forces consists of 30,000 officers & soldiers plus 40,000 conscripts.


After most of the country's aircraft was destroyed on ground by Israel during the Six-Day War in 1967, the military placed responsibility for air defense under one commander, the results of which proved positive by the air defense's performance in the 1973 Yom Kippur War.


It is undergoing extensive modernization with bugdetary constraints being the only hindrance to what was once dubbed by Israeli air force generals during the 1973 Ramadan (Yom Kippur) war as "the most extensive and sophisticated air-defense system in the world after the one defending the U.S.S.R...". Currently, it is believed to possess the following weaponry:

Modern low, medium and high altitude SAMs of American, French, Russian design or local license built, including:

Regional Air Defense Missile Systems[edit]

Regional/Strategic Perimeter level SAM[edit]

  • MIM-104(PAC-3) missile: 4 Batteries (8 Stationary (towed) units per Battery, 16 missiles per unit plus 2 reloads each)
  • Modernized MIM-23 HAWK "Improved HAWK" missile: 18 Batteries (6 SP units per Battery, 3 missiles per unit plus 2 reloads each) (Medium/High Altitude, Medium Range SAM)
  • 9M317 Buk-M2 missile: Purchased in 2013. [in service with unspecified number]
  • S-300VM transportable SAM system [first components delivered in March 2015][2]
  • Modernized SA-3 2M Pechora missile: 43 Batteries (each with 2 Stationary units, 4 missiles per Stationary unit plus 1 reload each) (Low/Medium Altitude, Medium Range SAM)
  • Indigenous Tayer el-sabah (Morning Bird) (reverse-engineered and modernized SA-2 Guideline S-75 Dvina missile: 40 Batteries (6 single units per Battery, 2 reloads each)(Medium/High Altitude, Long Range SAM)

Army Corps and Division level SAM[edit]

  • SLAMRAAM (pending US Federal Government Approval\congressional oversight)'
  • 9K332 Tor-M2 :Purchased in 2013 [in service with unspecified numbers]
  • Modernized SA-3 2M Pechora missile: 10 Batteries (6 SP units per Battery, 2 missiles per S/P unit plus 1 reload per unit) (Low/Medium Altitude, Medium Range SAM)
  • Modernized SA-6 Gainful missile: 14 Batteries (6 SP units per Battery, 3 missiles per unit plus 1 reload each)(Low/Medium Altitude, Medium Range SAM)

Field Point Defense Surface to Air Systems[edit]

Brigade and Battalion level SAM[edit]

  • Skyguard "Amoun" anti-aircraft system Aspide 2000 missile: 40 Batteries " 18 battalion + 4 batteries for training " (2 4-cell Aspide missile launchers and 2 Oerlikon GDF-005 twin 35mm guns with one Skyguard Fire Control System per battery).
  • Modernized Crotale NG missile: 16 Batteries (9 units per Battery, 4 Missiles per unit plus 2 reloads each)(SP Low/Medium Altitude, Short Range SAM)
  • MIM-72/M48 Chaparral low-altitude SAM AIM-9 "Sidewinder": 86 SP units (4 Missiles per unit plus 2 reloads each)(SP Low Altitude, Short Range SAM)
  • AN/TWQ-1 Avenger : 75 Batteries ( 4/8 ready-to-fire FIM-92 Stinger missiles + .50 caliber machine gun with an electronic trigger that can be fired from both the Remote Control Unit (RCU) located in the drivers cab, and from the handstation located in the Avenger turret )( provides mobile, short-range air defense protection for ground units against cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, low-flying fixed-wing aircraft, and helicopters )

By the end of 2008, With the Support of The United-States (through FMF and private contractors\firms) all missile, radar, observation posts, command and control systems are to be linked into a complex multi-level, national computerized early-warning air defense command (C3I4) via modified EC-130H Hercules (modified to AWACS-like specifications) transport aircraft, EW AWACS "Grumman" E-2C Hawkeye 2000, EW ECM Beechcraft 1900 ELINT, underground sheltered-reinforced fiber-optic network.

Commanders of the Egyptian Air Defense Command[edit]

Operational Structure[edit]

In 1970 Egyptian Air Defense consisted of 4 divisions:

  • 5th Air Defense division placed in Cairo
  • 8th Air Defense division placed in Abu Suwayr
  • 10th Air Defense division placed in Alexandria
  • 12th Air Defense division placed in Aswan [4]

Egyptian Air Defense Equipment[edit]

Model Image Type Variant Number Number Details
S-300 9A83ME TEL - Antey-2500 SAM 02.jpg  Russia Long Range Air Defense S-300VM (SA-23) 0 (+12)[5] In December 2014 production of 12 units was completed for a foreign customer. With Egypt the only country which showed interest in procurement of this type of AA it is save to assume that it was built for them, though the Russian official quickly denied it saying that there is no formal contract between the two counties. 12 units would create 3 air defense batteries.
AA Range = 200 km, AA Ceiling = 30 km, Speed = Mach 5, ABM Range = 40 km.[6]
MIM-104 Patriot Patriot System 2.jpg  United States Long Range Air Defense MIM-104-F/PAC-3 32 In 1999, Egypt acquired 32 missile systems from the United States for $1.3 billion. [7]
Skyguard AMOUN Skyguard-Sparrow Misslie Launcher Display at Chih Hang Air Force Base Apron 20130601a.jpg  Egypt Short/Medium Range Air Defense Unknown A Skyguard battery consists of two launchers, each with four missiles, two 35 mm guns, and a fire control radar. "AMOUN" is the Egyptian name for the point- defense system designed to protect high value assets, such as airports and cities.[8]
Dvina Sa-2camo.jpg  Egypt Medium Range Air Defense Tayer el-Sabah
100[9] 100 units were delivered by USSR from 1970 to 1972 for use in the Yom Kippur War. The Egyptian like the performance and purchased the production rights from USSR
AA Range = 45 km, AA Ceiling = 25 km, Speed = Mach 3.5, ABM = none
SLAMRAAM AIM-120 AMRAAM P6230147.JPG  United States
Medium Range Air Defense x
AA Range = 50 km, AA Ceiling = ?km, Speed = Mach 4
Buk Alabino220415part1-47.jpg  Russia Medium Range Air Defense M1-2
M2 (SA-17)
The Buk-M2 was not previously known to be in Egyptian service until it was revealed in a video of an air defence exercise released on 2 November 2014 by the MoD.[10]
AA Range = 30 km, AA Ceiling = 14 km, Speed = Mach 3.0
MIM-23 Hawk Hawk mobile.jpg  United States Medium Range Air Defense Phase III 62 On 25 February 2014, Egypt ordered new 186 rocket motors to extend the live of their Hawk batteries.[11] Since there are 3 missiles per launch unit then one can deduce that Egypt plans to maintain 62 launcher systems.
AA Range = 50 km, AA Ceiling = 14 km, Speed = Mach 2.4
Pechora Independence Day Parade - Flickr - Kerri-Jo (87).jpg  Soviet Union
Medium Range Air Defense 2M (SA-3) 70 Originally Egypt received 200 units from USSR between 1970 and 1972[9]and they were used greatly during the Yom Kippur War. These units aged and some of them were upgraded to Pechora-2M version. As of December 2008, 70 Pechora-2M upgraded ramp-launched missiles had been ordered by Egypt. [12]
AA Range = 35 km, AA Ceiling = 18 km, Speed = Mach 3.1
Kub Sa6 1.jpg  Soviet Union Medium Range Air Defense SA-6 56[13] Purchased from the Soviet Union after the disastrous 6 Day War and was used to great effect in the Yom Kippur War virtually denying the entire air space of Egypt to Israel. The system was modernized and is still in service.
AA Range = 24 km, AA Ceiling = 14 km, Speed = Mach 2.8
Tor Tor-M1 SAM (2).jpg  Russia Short Range Air Defense M1
M2 (SA-15)
16 16 units were purchased from Russia. [14] The Tor-M2 was not previously known to be in Egyptian service until it was revealed in a video of an air defence exercise released on 2 November 2014 by the MoD.[15]
AA Range = 12 km, AA Ceiling = 6 km, Speed = Mach 2.5
AN/TWQ-1 Avenger Avenger missile.jpg  United States Short Range Air Defense 75 Egypt originally ordered 50 units, but in 2006 it chose to order a further 25 units which all were delivered by September 2008.[16]
AA Range = 8 km, AA Ceiling = 8 km, Speed = Mach 2.2
Crotale Crotale missile launchers DSC00866.jpg  France Short Range Air Defense VT-1 36[17] Purchased from France in 1980.[18]
AA Range = 11 km, AA Ceiling = 6 km, Speed = 3.53
MIM-72 Chaparral MIM-72 Chaparral 07.jpg  United States Short Range Air Defense MIM-72C[19] 80[20] Purchased from U.S. stock in 1987[18]
AA Range = 9 km, AA Ceiling = 4 km, Speed = Mach 1.5
Strela-1 Soviet SA-9 Gaskin.jpg  Soviet Union Short Range Air Defense SA-9 20[17] x
AA Range = 4.2 km, AA Ceiling = 3.5 km, Speed = Mach 1.8
M113 AA M163 VADS.JPEG  United States
SPAAG Nile 23
Sinai 23
Upgraded version of the ZU-23-2 twin 23 mm self-propelled anti-aircraft guns radar guided (148) with Sakr Eye SAM 2X2 on M113, Upgraded version of the ZU-23-2 twin 23 mm self-propelled anti-aircraft guns radar guided with Stinger SAM (3X2) (72) on M113, 108
Shilka ZSU-23-4 Shilka 01.jpg  Soviet Union SPAAG
ZSU-57-2 ZSU-57-2 Hun 2010 02.jpg  Soviet Union SPAAG 40 100 ordered in 1960 from Soviet Union and delivered between 1961 and 1962,[21] with 40 remaining in storage today.[22]
M53/59 Praga PLdvK 53 59 TMB.jpg  Czechoslovakia SPAAG
Oerlikon GDF 35 mm Oerlikon.jpg   Switzerland Towed AA (35 mm) Amoun 72
M167 VADS M167-Vulcan.jpg  United States Towed AA (20 mm) 72
ZPU ZPU morrocan.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (12.7 mm) 200
ZU-23-2 Zu-23-2-belarus.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (23 mm) 280
61-K M1939-37mm-hatzerim-1.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (37 mm) 200 700
S-60 S-60-57mm-hatzerim-1.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (57 mm) 200 600
52-K 52k nn.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (85 mm) 400
KS-19 KS-19-100-mm-anti-aircraft-gun-batey-haosef-3.jpg  Soviet Union Towed AA (100 mm) 200
KS-30 File-KS 30 Letecky Muzeum.JPG  Soviet Union Towed AA (130 mm) 120 [23]

future of air defense[edit]

System Image Origin Number Comment
Air defence
S-400 Triumf S-400 Triumf-34.jpg  Russia N/A Egypt has expressed its interest in buying S-400 systems.[24]
Pantsir-S1 Bronnitsy - 01 - Pantsir-S1 SAM.jpg  Russia N/A There is a definite possibility to contract Pantsir-S1 to protect S-300VM platforms.


Officer Brigadier General General
Airdefese Beret - Egyptian Army.png
Air defense brigadier Beret - Egyptian Army.png
Airdefense general Beret - Egyptian Army.png


  1. ^,-air-force-and-air-.aspx
  2. ^ "According sources, Russia would start deliveries of Antey-2500 missile systems to Egypt". 6 March 2015. 
  3. ^ "Commanders of the Egyptian Air Defense Command". Retrieved 15 July 2013.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  4. ^ "K.M. Molodtsov, 'Experience of Egyptian air defense use in combat during 1968 - 1972' (in Russian)". 
  5. ^ . Institute for National Security Studies Retrieved 2015-04-03.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^ "S-300 & Variants". Air Power Australia. Retrieved 17 April 2015. 
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ a b "Arms and Warfare". Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  10. ^ "Egypt reveals air defence upgrades". (in Eng). 
  11. ^ Binnie, Jeremy (26 February 2014). "Egypt, Jordan to extend the life of HAWK missiles". IHS Jane's 360. Retrieved 3 September 2014. 
  12. ^ "S-125". (in Eng). 
  13. ^ IISS 2012 Military Balance, pp. 322
  14. ^ "Tor (SA-15 Gauntlet)". Military Retrieved 2015-04-12. 
  15. ^ "Egypt reveals air defence upgrades". (in Eng). 
  16. ^ "Avenger Low Level Air Defense System, United States of America". Army Retrieved 2015-04-10. 
  17. ^ a b "The Middle East Military Balance, 2004". Retrieved 2015-04-13. 
  18. ^ a b "Arms Diffusion: The Spread of Military Innovations in the Middle East". Retrieved 2015-04-23. 
  19. ^ "Egypt buys improved Chaparral" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-04-23. 
  20. ^ "The Middle East Military Balance, 2001-2002". Retrieved 2015-04-10. 
  21. ^ "SIPRI Arms Transfers Database". Retrieved 2011-09-14. 
  22. ^ "Силы и средства ПВО вооруженных сил арабских государств" [Air Defense Forces of Arab States] (in Russian). Retrieved 2015-04-06. 
  23. ^ "Chief Designer Ardalion Rastov". Military Parade. 31 August 1998. Retrieved 23 August 2008. 
  24. ^ "Egypt wants S-400 to counter Iran". 2009-07-02. Retrieved 2013-10-29. 

External links[edit]