MOSCOW, July 19. /TASS/. Russia is getting ready for flight tests of the Burevestnik nuclear powered cruise missile, an official at the Defense Ministry told reporters on Thursday.
"The missile’s component makeup is being improved based on clarified requirements, while ground tests continue and preparations are being made for experimental flight tests of the improved missile," the official said.
According to the Defense Ministry, "work on an unlimited-range missile is going according to plan."
"In the meantime, launching systems are also being designed, while technological processes to manufacture, assemble and test the missile are being improved. This range of work will make it possible to start designing a totally new sort of weapon - a strategic nuclear complex armed with a nuclear powered missile," the ministry official noted.
Head of the 12th Central Research Institute at Russia’s Defense Ministry Sergey Pertsev, in turn, said that the tests of the new cruise missile equipped with a small nuclear power unit had confirmed the accuracy of the technical decisions that Russian researchers, engineers and designers had made. In addition, the tests enabled the researchers "to receive valuable experimental data necessary for specifying a number of requirements."
"A low-flying and low observable cruise missile carrying a nuclear warhead, with an almost unlimited range, an unpredictable trajectory and capability to bypass interception lines is invincible to all the existing and advanced air and missile defense systems," the Russian Defense Ministry stressed.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his State of the Nation Address to the Federal Assembly that an unlimited-range missile had been tested in late 2017, adding that work on the missile had begun after the US announced its withdrawal from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in December 2001 as a response to Washington’s establishment of global missile defenses.
The creation of new strategic weapons is aimed at beefing up Russia’s defense capabilities and forestalling any kind of aggression against the country and its allies, the Defense Ministry pointed out.