The military radar station in Mishelevka is located 96 km northwest of Irkutsk. The Hen House early-warning radar station is designed to monitor missile launches in the vast eastern region covering China and part of the Arctic. It was built as part of the Russian space program and was initially intended for space telecommuncation and control.
In late 1999 the military made one of its radar units available to Irkutsk scientists. Alexander Potekhin, a researcher from the Institute of Solar-Terretrial Physics in Irkutsk, said the radar is used in a joint research project with American scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The unit was modified in order to be included into an international network, whichmonitors the atmosperic conditions at altitudes between 150 to 1000 km.
In October 1999 the Clinton Administration offered financial aid to complete an unfinished Pechora/Daryal LPAR missile radar system at Mishelevka [Mischelevka], in exchange for Moscow's consent to amend the ABM treaty. That revision would allow the U.S. to deploy a national missile defence system covering the entire country. The Russian Foreign Ministry said "there are no grounds" for American newspaper reports about the US offer of assistance.
The River Angara basin has a thick network of rivers. There are towns and settlements on all the major tributaries of River Angara. The city of metallurgy Shelekhov is located not far from the estuary of River Irkut, while Irkutsk is located right at the confluence of the two rivers. Blocks of apartments of the city Angarsk stretch along the dry bed of River Kitoi. There is a chain of municipalities on River Belaya: an old village Bel'sk (XVII century), the settlements Taiturka, Srednii, Novomal'tinsk, and the township Mishelevka with the famous Khaitinskii Porcelain Plant (early XIX century).
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