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Sound and fury from Russia as super-heavy Sarmat far from ready

16th May 2022 - 13:15 GMT | by Ian Parker in Portsmouth


The RS-28 Sarmat launch on 20 April 2022. (Photo: Russian MoD)

For all the bombastic talk from Russian President about the hitting power of the new RS-28 Sarmat 'super heavy' ICBM, observers are highly sceptical that it will enter service in 2023 as claimed.

Russia publicised a test of its RS-28 Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on 20 April amid its invasion of Ukraine, but industry observers think that accompanying statements of its readiness are optimistic to say the least.

The 208t RS-28 has been under development by the Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau since 2009 as a replacement for the R-36M ICBM (SS-18 ‘Satan').

In the 20 April test, according to the Russian MoD, the ICBM blasted off from the Pesetsk Cosmodrome in northern Russia, and a dummy warhead aboard Sarmat hit its intended target.

The new ICBM is designed to carry a

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Ian Parker


Ian Parker

Ian Parker became an aerospace and defence journalist in 1980 on Flight International and started …

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