RS-28 Sarmat

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RS-28 (Sarmat)
Type Superheavy Intercontinental ballistic missile
Place of origin Russia
Service history
Used by Russian Strategic Missile Troops
Production history
Designer Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau
Manufacturer KrasMash, Zlatous MZ, NPO Energomash, NPO Mashinostroyeniya, KBKhA
Weight 220 tonnes[1][2]
Length 36.3 m[3]
Diameter 3.0 m[3]
Warhead 10–24 MIRVs[4] (various type and yield, including HGVs; At the maximum reported throw-weight of up 10,000 kg, the missile could deliver a 50 Mt charge (the maximum theoretical yield-to-weight ratio is about 6 megatons of TNT per metric ton, and the maximum achieved ratio was apparently 5.2 megatons of TNT per metric ton in B/Mk-41).

Engine First stage: PDU-99 (RD-274 derived)
Propellant Liquid
approx. 10,900 kilometres (6,800 mi)[5]
Speed over Mach 20.7; 25,000 km/h (16,000 mph)
Inertial guidance, GLONASS, Astro-inertial
Accuracy 10 m[3]

The RS-28 Sarmat (Russian: РС-28 Сармат,[6] named after the Sarmatians[7] - NATO reporting name SS-X-30) is a Russian liquid-fueled, MIRV-equipped, superheavy thermonuclear armed intercontinental ballistic missile, in development by the Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau[6] since 2009.[8] It is intended to replace the old R-36M missile (SS-18 Satan).[9][2]

The Sarmat ICBM is one of the six new Russian strategic weapons unveiled by President Vladimir Putin on 1 March 2018.[10]


Its large payload of about 10 tonnes would allow for up to 10 heavy MIRV warheads or 15 lighter ones (350 kilotons yield each)[11] or up to 24 Avangard hypersonic glide vehicles,[12][13][14][15] or a combination of warheads and massive amounts of countermeasures designed to defeat anti-missile systems;[16][17] it was heralded by the Russian military as a response to the U.S. Prompt Global Strike.[18]

Sarmat has a short boost phase, which shortens the interval when it can be tracked by satellites with infrared sensors, like Space-Based Infrared System and makes it harder to intercept.[19][20][21][22]

It is speculated that RS-28 could fly a trajectory over the South Pole, completely immune to any current U.S. missile defense system.[20] It is suspected to have a Fractional Orbital Bombardment (FOBS) capability.[9]


In February 2014, a Russian military official announced the Sarmat is expected to be ready for deployment around 2020.[23] In May that year another official source suggested that the program was being accelerated and that it would, in his opinion, constitute up to 100 percent of Russia's fixed land-based nuclear arsenal by 2021.[18][24] At the end of June 2015, it was reported that the production schedule for the first prototype of the Sarmat was slipping.[25][26] The RS-28 Sarmat was expected to become operational in 2016.[27] On 10 August 2016, Russia successfully tested the RS-28's first-stage engine named PDU-99 "ПДУ-99".[28] The first image of this new missile was declassified and unveiled in October 2016.[29] In early 2017, prototype missiles had been reportedly built and delivered to Plesetsk for trials but the test program was being delayed to re-check key hardware components before initial launch.[30]

According to the commander of the Russian Strategic Forces, Col. Gen. Sergei Karakayev, the RS-28 Sarmat will be deployed with the 13th Red Banner Rocket Division, 31st Missile Army at Dombarovsky (Orenburg Oblast) and the 62nd Red Banner Rocket Division, 33rd Guards Missile Army at Uzhur (Krasnoyarsk Krai), replacing the previous R-36Ms (SS-18 Satan) currently located there.[9]

The first successful ejection test of the missile was reportedly carried out in late December 2017 at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. According to the report, the missile flew several dozen kilometers and fell within the test range.[31][32]

On 1 March 2018, Russian president Vladimir Putin, in his annual address to the Federal Assembly, said that "the active phase of tests" of the missile had begun.[33] Shortly after, an anonymous military source was cited as saying that the information about the Sarmat missile had in 2007 been leaked to the West deliberately.[34]

On 30 March 2018, the Russian Ministry of Defence has published a video showing the Sarmat ICBM performing its second successful test-launch at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.[35]

Future operators

See also


  1. ^ "Putin: Russia has nuclear weapons impossible to intercept - The China Post". 1 March 2018.
  2. ^ a b В обойме – «Сармат», «Кинжал», «Авангард»...: interview by deputy defence minister Yuriy Borisov,, 12 March 2018.
  3. ^ a b c "SS-X-30 "Satan II" (RS-28 Sarmat) - Missile Threat".
  4. ^ "Global Security Newswire – Russia Reportedly Approves Production of New Liquid-Fueled ICBM". 1 June 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  5. ^ Roth, Andrew (1 March 2018). "Putin threatens US arms race with new missiles declaration". the Guardian.
  6. ^ a b Новую тяжелую ракету "Сармат" будут делать в Красноярске Rossiyskaya Gazeta, 2 Feb 2015.
  7. ^ "Key facts about Russia's advanced Sarmat ICBM system". TASS (in Russian). Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  8. ^ "Перспективная тяжелая МБР РС-28 / ОКР Сармат, ракета 15А28 - SS-X-30 (проект) - MilitaryRussia.Ru — отечественная военная техника (после 1945г.)".
  9. ^ a b c "Sarmatian ICBM & FOBS Reintroduction". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  10. ^ "Putin: Russia Creates Advanced Weapons Responding to US Scrapping Missile Treaty". Sputnik (news agency). 1 March 2018. Retrieved 31 March 2018.
  11. ^ Litovkin, Nikolai (2 March 2018). "Which new weapons has Putin given Russia?".
  12. ^ "Objekt 4202 / Yu-71 / Yu-74". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  13. ^ Batchelor, Tom (15 June 2016). "Russia testing hypersonic nuclear glider that holds 24 warheads and travels at 7,000mph".
  14. ^ Sputnik. "Russian Top Secret Hypersonic Glider Can Penetrate Any Missile Defense".
  15. ^ "Russia upgrades its missile defense" (PDF).
  16. ^ "SS-30 ?? / R-X-? Sarmat New Heavy ICBM". Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  17. ^ "Russia plans new ICBM to replace Cold War 'Satan' missile". Reuters. 17 Dec 2013. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  18. ^ a b "Минобороны рассказало о тяжелой баллистической ракете - неуязвимом для ПРО ответе США".
  19. ^ Majumdar, Dave (12 March 2018). "Russia's Most Lethal Nuclear Missile Ever Will "Enter Duty in the Near Future"".
  20. ^ a b Majumdar, Dave (1 March 2018). "Russia's Nuclear Weapons Buildup Is Aimed at Beating U.S. Missile Defenses".
  21. ^ "Russia's Most Lethal Nuclear Missile Ever Will "Enter Duty in the Near Future"".
  22. ^ Trevithick, Joseph. "Russia Fires Topol Ballistic Missile to Test New Tech to Defeat Missile Defense Systems".
  23. ^ "Sarmat ICBM to be ready by 2020". 25 Feb 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  24. ^ "Russia Fast Tracking "Unique" Missile". The Moscow Times. 1 Jun 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  25. ^ "Russian Program to Build World's Biggest Intercontinental Missile Delayed". The Moscow Times. 26 June 2015. Retrieved 27 June 2015.
  26. ^ Начало испытаний новой ракеты «Сармат» отложено, 26 June 2015.
  27. ^ Ракета "Сармат" взлетит в 2016 году, 16 September 2015.
  28. ^ "Испытания тяжелой стратегической ракеты "Сармат" начнутся в ближайшее время". Interfax. 2016-08-10.
  29. ^ "Russia unveils first image of prospective ICBM". RT. 2016-10-25.
  30. ^ "Russia's Deadliest Nuke Program Faces Delays". The Diplomat. 28 March 2017. Retrieved 5 April 2017.
  31. ^ "В России успешно прошло первое бросковое испытание прототипа ракеты «Сармат»". Moskovskij Komsomolets. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  32. ^ "Sarmat ejection test, at last". Retrieved 29 December 2017.
  33. ^ Russia begins tests of promising Sarmat missile complex TASS, 2 March 2018.
  34. ^ Источник сообщил об утечке по ракетам "Сармат" специально для США‍ RIA Novosti, 3 March 2018.
  35. ^ "WATCH Test-Launch of Russia's Newest Sarmat ICBM". Sputnik (news agency). 30 March 2018. Retrieved 31 March 2018.

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