The Project 955 Borei K-551 Vladimir Monomakh strategic missile submarine successfully accomplished its first launch of a Bulava intercontinental ballistic missile from the White Sea towards the Kamchatka Kura range on Wednesday, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said.
"The [missile] was fired from a submerged position as part of state trials of armament and life-support systems of the Vladimir Monomakh nuclear-powered missile submarine. The missile flew along a normal trajectory and its warheads successfully reached the Kura range in Kamchatka," Konashenkov said.
Members of the submarine state trial commission witnessed the launch, he said.
"The actions of the commander and the crew of the Alexander Nevsky submarine in the missile shooting were assessed as professional and correct," the general said.
The Vladimir Monomakh is the third Project 955 Borei missile submarine. The project is being developed by the Rubin Central Maritime Design Bureau. The Sevmash shipyard began to build the submarine in December 2009. It was launched on December 30, 2012, and began factory trials in September 2013. The submarine will be carrying a brand new Bulava ICBM system.
In all, 19 Bulava test launches have been carried out and eight of them have failed. A test launch from the Alexander Nevsky submarine on September 6, 2013, was not successful. The Vladimir Monomakh has just accomplished its first Bulava launch.
R30 3M30 Bulava (designation RSM-56, NATO reporting name SS-NX-30) is Russia's newest three-stage solid-fuel missile to arm prospective Project Borei nuclear-powered strategic missile submarines.
The missile is capable of carrying up to ten hypersonic maneuvering and individually targeting nuclear warheads with variable altitude and course trajectories and destroying targets at a range of 8,000 kilometers. Bulava will be a core weapon in Russia's future strategic nuclear forces in the period until 2040-2045.
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