Russia’s Space Forces commander said on Saturday that a new radar being built near the Baltic port of Kaliningrad would be tested by the end of the year.

“The westernmost radar Voronezh DM in the Kaliningrad Region may be tested by the end of this year,” Gen. Oleg Ostapenko told a military council of the Space Forces in Krasnoznamensk outside Moscow.

Ostapenko said three more radars would also soon be completed near the cities of Irkutsk in Siberia, St. Petersburg and Krasnodar in the south.

He said the first two Voronezh class radars were already being tested near St. Petersburg and near Krasnodar.

“The radar in Lekhtusi [outside St. Petersburg] is ready to be put on combat duty, which will happen by the end of 2011,” he said, adding that the Space Forces were working on further development of the early warning systems in Russia.

The Armavir radar near Krasnodar will be the second facility after the Lekhtusi complex to close a gap in radar coverage on Russia’s western borders after radar sites were closed in Skrunda (Latvia) in late 1998 and recently in Mukachevo and Sevastopol (Ukraine).

With an effective range of 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) the Voronezh class radar has capabilities similar to its predecessors, the Dnepr and Daryal, but uses less energy and is more environmentally friendly.