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The test-launch of a new strategic missile was abortive

September 29, 2011, 12:19 UTC+3

The missile debris fell down eight kilometers away from the launching pad

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MOSCOW, September 29 (Itar-Tass) — The test-launch of a new intercontinental ballistic missile of the fifth generation from the Plesetsk spaceport was abortive on Tuesday. The missile debris fell down eight kilometers away from the launching pad. The Defense Ministry has made no official report about an abortive missile test-launch. According to preliminary reports, the intercontinental ballistic missile dropped due to a malfunction in the engine of the first stage.

The prototype of a new model of a solid-fuel missile Yars with a separately targeted multiple warhead was test-launched for the first time, the Kommersant reports. This warhead enables to increase manifold the combat capacity of the missile; after the launch the missile can hit several targets simultaneously. The newspaper reports that the fallen missile had not less than six warheads, and not four warheads, as the conventional missile system Yars is armed with. The Yars missile costs about 900 million rubles, the newspaper reported. However, sources in the Defence Ministry failed to say, how much the creation of a missile with an upgraded warhead will cost. “This is just a blue-print, an exact cost can be announced later,” the source stated, acknowledging that this missile model will not be cheaper than the previous ones for sure. Later after several trials and test-launches this missile system will replace strategic missile systems Topol-M and Yars, which the Russian Armed Forces are armed with.

A military journalist Viktor Baranets cited by the Novye Izvestia states that he cannot speak about a systemic crisis in this case. According to him, a systemic crisis in the ICBM Bulava situation was linked with several similar breakdowns. In this case the incident occurred with an absolutely another system. The test-launch was made, but the tested missile sustained a failure in the engine of the first stage. The first stage is the most powerful and the designers should make the boost trajectory the quickest one, Baranets said. Russia tests an absolutely new first stage of the missile. However, the missile cannot be called new, as it is just modernized.

According to the director of the Center of Public and Political Studies Vladimir Yevseyev cited by the Nezavisimaya Gazeta, the development of the missile with higher capacities to break through the anti-missile defense system can be taken as one more argument in case of a probable new anti-missile defense crisis in the relations between Russia and the United States over the active fulfillment of the US plans to develop a country’s ABM system in Europe. Since Russian concerns over the US statement to deploy elements of the US anti-missile defense in Turkey, Romania, Poland and other countries, which does not find understanding among US counter partners. “Broader capacities of Russian missiles to overcome the anti-missile defense are an expected step,” Yevseyev said.

Russia pins high hopes on a new missile, the Rossiiskaya Gazeta notes. According to its combat capabilities the missile should exceed substantially all types of solid-fuel missiles, which the Russian Strategic Missile Troops are armed with, and should build up the nuclear missile strength of the country that is very important, because the service life of the most powerful missiles Voevoda, also known as Satana, expires and the foresaid missiles are being removed from combat duty.

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