Russia successfully tests long-range missile




 
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October 7th, 2010  
Shmack
 
 

Topic: Russia successfully tests long-range missile




MOSCOW The Russian navy on Thursday successfully test-fired an advanced ballistic missile from a nuclear submarine, giving a boost to the nation's top weapons program that has been haunted by a string of failures.

The successful launch of the Bulava intercontinental ballistic missile follows 12 previous tests over the past few years, most of which were failures. The failed launches have raised doubts about the military's most expensive weapons program and left a newly commissioned nuclear submarine weaponless.

Defense Ministry spokesman Alexei Kuznetsov told The Associated Press that the Bulava was launched Thursday from the Dmitry Donskoi nuclear submarine under the water in the White Sea. The missile's warheads successfully hit a designated area on the Kura testing range on the far-eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, he said.

The Bulava has been described by authorities as a future cornerstone of Russia's nuclear arsenal as older Soviet-built nuclear missiles are gradually retired.

Russian officials billed Bulava as a new-generation weapon, capable of dodging any potential missile defenses thanks to its quick start and an ability to perform unusual maneuvers in flight.

But the Bulava program has consumed a large chunk of the Russian military budget without producing any visible result. Only five of the previous 12 launches of the missile were officially pronounced successful, and some military analysts said that even some of those were actually flawed in one way or another.

Officials have insisted the Bulava's concept is fine and have blamed the failed launches on manufacturing flaws resulting from post-Soviet industrial degradation. They have said it is difficult to control the quality of all the parts supplied by hundreds of subcontractors involved in the program.

As the tests dragged on, the Russian navy has already commissioned the first of a new series of nuclear-powered submarines to be armed with the new missile, the Yuri Dolgoruky. Several other such submarines are under construction, and officials have said they could not be adapted to carry another type of missile if the Bulava program fails.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/...ocId=D9IMPIRG0

I must say these 2 years since the latest successful launch of this missile in 2008, and especially last several months were totally hemorrhoidal for Russia's ministry of defense including your humble servant. Hundreds of militarymen and scientists felt and looked like there was a quart of turpentine in their asses. All in all it's the 4th (3d from underwater, out of 12 including today's launch) fully successful launch which was essential for the entire nuclear program with 2 more left. Very likely in summer 2011 it will be put into service with the Northern fleet first Borei class sub.
October 7th, 2010  
Amanda
 
Did the United States make significant advances during this period of
Russian failures?
October 7th, 2010  
Shmack
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amanda
Did the United States make significant advances during this period of
Russian failures?
Actually they don't need to, because the United States made all the requiered significant advance in the past. US Trident D5 missile is from the certain point of view outdated but first, it has a serious potential for modernization, and second, it's the most accurate, reliable and in many other ways advanced weapon of this type ever created. The US Navy will need the next-generation missile to replace it only by 2030.
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October 7th, 2010  
Amanda
 
Does that mean the U.S. missle is far better than the one Russia is just now
succeeding with?
October 7th, 2010  
Shmack
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amanda
Does that mean the U.S. missle is far better than the one Russia is just now
succeeding with?
Well, it's not all that simple of course.
Trident missile is superior to Bulava in terms of accuracy, throw-weight and, thus shooting range. On the other hand, Bulava is superior to Trident concerning missile's endurance. Bulava is smaller and much lighter, it is faster during boost phase, it runs along low-angle trajectory. Roughly speaking, everything was made to prevent a missile from being hit.
There's also a fog of war with accuracy since the missile is equipped with radiocorrector which corrects trajectory with the help of GLONASS ('Russian NAVSTAR'), which is currently not fully operational.
So, it depends. But still, there is one certain fact: there's no such dramatic difference between these missile that could force any of the countries start developing a new one at once and provoke an arms race. It's just we have a littile different nuclear warfare planning concepts.
October 7th, 2010  
Prapor
 
 
They finally got it flying

How long has it been, ten years... God... Shows how far our weapons research and design ability has fallen. Back in CCCP, I think they made a new class of missiles every two years or something.

I mean, that was a bit much, true. Nobody needs 20,000 nuclear warheads. But with Bulava, it was just disgraceful.

Oh, well, at least it works now.Are they going to be putting them on Borei subs soon? That is what Bulava was designed for, after all.
October 8th, 2010  
Amanda
 
I would have thought a technology that needed ten years just to successfully launch
would have been made obsolete in that time or at least be far less superior than its competitor who had a working missile in that ten years, especially if the U.S. had been improving theirs over that same ten year period. Did we miss an opportunity?
(Not in terms of "provoking an arms race" just for the sake of the "chess match".)
October 8th, 2010  
Shmack
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amanda
I would have thought a technology that needed ten years just to successfully launch
would have been made obsolete in that time or at least be far less superior than its competitor who had a working missile in that ten years, especially if the U.S. had been improving theirs over that same ten year period. Did we miss an opportunity?
(Not in terms of "provoking an arms race" just for the sake of the "chess match".)
That's a good point, and it in no way contradicts what i've already said. Since Trident D5 was first launched in 1987 there was some serious work on its modernization of course, while at the same time Russia a) already by that time had less advanced technologies in the field of submarine-launched missiles, b) had less money. Fortunately or unfortunately, that was the exact time the cold war came to an end, and nobody saw any sense in trying to catch up with the US.

Nowadays Russia is spending ocean-wide sums of money on sbumarine-launched missiles, but that is being made in order to prevent a huge scientific branch from collapse. In order to compete with the US, Russia has to invest such money it simply doesn't have.

The thing is that we are talking about quite a special weapon, which despite all the above listed nuances will most probably kill people with equal effectiveness, especially when there are thousands of missiles.
October 8th, 2010  
Amanda
 
Ya panemaya, spaceebo.
October 9th, 2010  
Shmack
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amanda
Ya panemaya, spaceebo.

Na zdorovye
 


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