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Russia successfully test-launches Sarmat ICBM from Plesetsk spaceport — top brass

The Sarmat is due to replace the Voyevoda ICBM

MOSCOW, April 20. /TASS/. Russia successfully conducted the first launch of a Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) from the Plesetsk cosmodrome in the Arkhangelsk Region, Russia’s Defense Ministry reported on Wednesday.

"Today, at 15:12 Moscow time, a Sarmat silo-based intercontinental ballistic missile was successfully test-launched from a silo launcher at the Plesetsk state testing cosmodrome in the Arkhangelsk Region," the ministry said in a statement.

"The launch’s tasks were achieved in full. The designated characteristics were confirmed at all the stages of its flight. The practice warheads arrived at the designated area at the Kura proving ground on the Kamchatka Peninsula," the ministry added.

During the first flight tests of the cutting-edge heavy missile with the MIRVed (multiple independently targetable vehicle) warheads, the correctness of its design, structural and technical solutions was assessed. The breakthrough Sarmat ICBM will enter service with Russia’s Strategic Missile Force after the program of its tests is over. The Sarmat is due to replace the Voyevoda ICBM.

"Work is underway at the Uzhursky missile formation to prepare a forward missile regiment for its rearmament with the new missile system," the ministry said.

The missile’s energy and mass characteristics helped principally expand the range of its armament, including the number of warheads and their types, including hypersonic boost glide vehicles. The Sarmat is also the most powerful missile with the longest striking range, it said.

"The new missile is capable of striking targets at long ranges, using different flight paths. The Sarmat features unique characteristics that enable it reliably to breach any existing and future anti-ballistic missile defenses," the Russian Defense Ministry stressed.

Sarmat ICBM development

The Sarmat ICBM has been developed at the Makeyev State Rocket Center (part of Roscosmos) and is manufactured at the Krasmash enterprise. In experts’ estimates, the RS-28 Sarmat is capable of delivering a MIRVed warhead weighing up to 10 tonnes to any point of the world both through the North and South Poles.