MOSCOW, September 12. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia will test-fire a Bulava submarine-launched ballistic missile from the Yuri Dolgorukiy strategic nuclear-powered submarine (SLBM) in October, a source at the General Staff of the Russian Armed forces said on Friday.
The source said that one more Bulava launch could be conducted in November from another Borey-class strategic nuclear-powered submarine, the Alexander Nevsky.The launch from the Alexander Nevsky was scheduled for September but was successfully conducted on Wednesday from the Vladimir Monomakh submarine that is currently undergoing sea trials, the source added.
The missile was launched from an underwater position off north-west Russia’s White Sea and hit a designated target at the Kura test range on the Kamchatka peninsula in the Far East. The source said that the launch from the Alexander Nevsky "could be rescheduled from September to November, but plans could change again."
Russian Navy commander Adm. Viktor Chirkov said on Wednesday that two more Bulava launches from the Borey-class submarines will take place in autumn.
Bulava R-30 is a Russian submarine-launched intercontinental ballistic missile designed for the new Borey-class submarines, eight of which are expected to enter service by 2020.
The three-stage solid-fuel missile is capable of carrying from six to ten nuclear warheads. The missile's maximum range is up to 9,000km.
The Bulava development began in 1998. Eight of 19 test launches carried out since 2005 were successful. Others failed due to malfunctions of the control system, engines of second and third stages and warhead separation. The missile's commissioning was delayed because of the failures.
After six consecutive successful launches in 2010-2011, Bulava was expected to be commissioned. However, the previous launch from the Alexander Nevsky submarine on September 9, 2013 was unsuccessful. The missile fell in the Arctic Ocean because of failure of the engine control system of the second stage.