Russia to Test Bulava Missile

21 March 2011 (Last Updated March 21st, 2011 18:30)

Russia will continue to carry out the test firing of the sea-launched intercontinental Bulava nuclear ballistic missile in June this year, missile designer Yury Solomonov has said. "The launch will be carried out as soon as the ice melts... sometime in June," he added. The test fi

Russia will continue to carry out the test firing of the sea-launched intercontinental Bulava nuclear ballistic missile in June this year, missile designer Yury Solomonov has said.

"The launch will be carried out as soon as the ice melts... sometime in June," he added.

The test firing of the missile could be carried out either by the Dmitry Donskoi or Yury Dolgoruky nuclear-powered submarines in the White Sea.

The 12m-long, 37t Bulava missile, which could be made the cornerstone of Russia's nuclear arsenal over the next decade, will not enter service until tests prove it to be 98%-99% reliable.

The missile, with a range of over 8,000km, can carry up to ten nuclear warheads and could be deployed on the new Borey Class strategic submarines.

Russia is planning to conduct at least four test launches of the missile this year, according to RIA Novosti.