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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Russia to resume Bulava missile test this summer

Russia will resume tests of its troubled Bulava submarine-launched intercontinental missile in the summer of 2010, said the Russian Navy on Monday. 

Photo : Ria Novosti

    At least two Bulava missiles will be test-fired on Russia's strategic nuclear-powered submarine Dmitry Donskoi, officials from the Russian Navy were quoted as saying by the Itar-Tass news agency. 

    If the test-launches are successful, more launches, including single and salvo ones, will be conducted on the Yuri Dolgoruky submarine, for which the missile was designed, said the source. 

    By now, seven of the 12 test-launches of the Bulava missile have been reported as unsuccessful. The latest failure was on Dec.9, 2009 in the White Sea off Russia's northwest coast. 

    Further development of the missile has been questioned by some legislators and defense experts, but the military insisted there was no alternative to the Bulava and pledged to continue testing the missile until it is ready to be put into service with the navy. 

    The Bulava, which is capable of carrying up to 10 individually-targeted nuclear warheads and has a maximum range of 8,000 km, is expected to become a key part of the Russian military's future nuclear arsenal. (Original News)