Russia continues to develop its strategic missile forces
Russia`s Strategic Missile Forces (Raketniye Voyska Strategisheskogo Naznacheniya, RVSN) will receive some 100 new weapon systems, including the RS-24 Yars (NATO reporting name: SS-27 mod 2 or SS-29 ) intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in mobile and silo-based configurations, by the end of 2018, Commander of the service Colonel General Sergey Karakayev said on December 17.
Russian RS-24 Yars mobile ICBM InterContinental Ballistic Missile. (Picture source Global Look Press)
The deliveries will allow the RVSN to rearm a missile regiment of the Yoshkar-Ola Missile Division with mobile launchers of the RS-24 Yars ICBM and continue the refitting of the Kozelsk Missile Division, the general said. According to him, a missile range of the Dombarovo formation will get the first Avangard gliding reentry vehicles mounted on the UR-100N UTTKh ICBMs in 2019. The NPO Mashinostroyenia Corporation has already launched the manufacturing of the Avangard. "We are to make a missile regiment comprising a modified command and control post and two silo-based launchers operational in the Dombarovo Missile Division next year," said Karakayev. According to him, the Avangard will shore up the capabilities of the RVSN in terms of missile defense penetration and point strikes.
The service`s ICBMs feature a relatively short active flight trajectory and are equipped with the newest countermeasure systems that suppress any missile defense. "We have hammered out some technical solutions that counterbalance the advanced U.S. missile defence system that has been deployed to Europe. The maneuver performance of the missiles will also be enhanced," said Karakayev.
Russian industry is developing a new silo-based strategic missile system armed with the Sarmat liquid-fuel ICBM. The Uzhurskaya Missile Division is planned to be the first RVSN`s formation that will receive the weapon in 2021. The ICBM has already passed through its drop tests and confirmed the capabilities of its launch systems, silo-based launcher and engine. The flights tests of the Sarmat will be conducted at the Plesetsk space range and then in the Uzhurskaya Missile Division.
At an extended meeting of the Ministry of Defence`s panel held on December 18, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the erection of infrastructure for the Yars ICBMs was being continued. "Six missile regiments have already received fully equipped launch pads for the weapons and seven more regiments feature pieces of infrastructure required for operating the weapons," Shoigu said.
In 2019, the RVSN will make 31 launchers of the Yars ICBMs and the Avangard vehicles operational.
The proportion of modern hardware in service with the RVSN has reached 70%. This figure will increase to 76% by the end of 2019.