16 Dec 2019 09:31

Russian Strategic Missile Forces commander reports preparations for test-launching Sarmat ICBM

MOSCOW. Dec 16 (Interfax) - Preparations are underway for test-launching the new intercontinental ballistic missile Sarmat, according to Russian Strategic Missile Forces Commander Sergei Karakayev.

"We are preparing for test-launches of a new missile system, Sarmat, which is expected to be put on combat duty by the missile formation stationed in Uzhur, Krasnoyarsk Territory," Karakayev said in an interview with the newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda.

"Enterprises of the industry are getting ready for the state test-launches," he said.

Meanwhile, the first missile regiment is preparing to be armed with this system, Karakayev said.

"The Russian Strategic Missile Forces are fully ready to put the new missile system on combat duty. What is more, features, the design, and performance characteristics of the system have been being studied at our leading military schools for the past three years," he said.

"In addition to the existent types of warheads, the Sarmat complex is able to carry a broad range of prospective warheads, including next-generation hypersonic vehicles," Karakayev said.

"All missile formations will be gradually rearmed with new missile complexes Yars, Avangard, and Sarmat in the near future," he said.

Sarmat will replace the world's most powerful silo-based missile RS-20V Voyevoda (NATO code name SS-18 Satan) in the Uzhurskaya missile division stationed in the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Dombarovskaya missile division stationed in the Orenburg region. The rearming process will begin in the Uzhurskaya missile division in 2021.

Successful drop trials of the Sarmat missile were reported earlier. Russian President Vladimir Putin said on April 11 that Sarmat was undergoing the final stage of trials.