The much-talked about Sarmat missile with a range of up to 18,000 km has a short active flight segment that complicates the process of its interception. Putin presented реу Sarmat strategic complex for the first time in 2018.
The Sarmat strategic missile system was put on combat duty, the head of Roskosmos, Yuri Borisov said, RIA Novosti reports.
The deployment of the Sarmat complex started in December, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said. In 2018, the president said that the complex should enter service in 2020. The missile forces later announced the deployment of Sarmats in 2021, and in December of that year — in 2022.
The Sarmat is a heavy intercontinental ballistic missile complex. The launch weight of the missile exceeds 200 tons. The firing range amounts to 18,000 km.
Putin first spoke about the Sarmat strategic complex during his address to the Federal Assembly in March 2018. A significant part of that speech was devoted to Russia's state-of-the-art weapons and military technology. According to Putin, the Sarmat was supposed to replace the Voevoda (NATO reporting name Satan).
Voevoda has a range of 11,000 km, whereas the Sarmat has practically no range restrictions, Putin then said.
The R-28 Sarmat silo-based liquid-propellant intercontinental ballistic missile is outfitted with a 10-ton payload and is capable of covering distances of up to 16,000 kilometres. The ICBM is 36 meters long and three meters in diameter.
The head part of the missile may contain several separable nuclear warheads with a total yield of several megatons of TNT.
Development works on RS-28 Sarmat project began in 2011. The weapon was developed by the Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau with the participation of the Scientific and Production Association of Mechanical Engineering. The first launch of the ICBMs under the state test program took place in April 2022.
According to Sergei Karakaev, the commander of the Strategic Missile Forces, it will take enemy decades to develop a system that would be capable of intercepting the Sarmat missile defence system.
"From our notorious trajectory through the North Pole (as shown in the animation video aired during Putin's 2018 speech — ed.), it is possible to build a trajectory through the South Pole that is not protected at all today," Karakaev said.
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