Chief of Russian General Staff Explains Bulava Faults
Unsuccessful test launches of Bulava ballistic missile are associated with human factor, said Chief of Russian General Staff Gen. Nikolai Makarov on Feb 18.
“You must be aware of a number of Bulava’s faulty test launches. We stopped test program trying to puzzle out the problem. Generally, the reason was human factor, I mean it is when a man did his job amateurishly. You know, since there is no strict control, he did it ‘quick-and-dirty’, and that was the main reason”, Makarov said in the interview to the Echo Moskvy radio.
He specified that the military could not understand what the problem was, because four launches failed due to four different unrelated defects.
“It was clear to us that technical solution was correct, so we put an acceptance officer at every key point of production chain, and after that all launches were successful”, reports RIA Novosti citing the general.
By now, 18 test launches of SLBM Bulava were held; ten of them were found effective, other two – seventh and eighth – partially effective. The latest test launch was carried out on Dec 23, 2011.
SLBM R30 Bulava (in international agreements – RSM-56, on NATO classification – SS-NX-30) is the newest Russian three-stage solid-propellant missile designed as basic weapon for Borei-class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines.
The missile is capable to carry up to 10 hypersonic maneuvering independently-targetable nuclear re-entry vehicles to the range of about 8,000 km. SLBM Bulava will make the core of Russia’s maritime strategic nuclear force till 2040–2045.
Naval Today Staff , February 21, 2012; Image: taringa