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Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: BZhRK, Molodets, RS-22 and SS-24 Scalpel
Parent System: RT-23
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 1987
Total Production: 90
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Description: The Soviet Union's RT-23 Molodets, SS-24 Scalpel NATO-codename, is a silo- and train-based intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) designed to carry 10 multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle (MIRV) nuclear warheads. Each nuke yields about 200 kilotons but some sources suggests that could yield up to 550 kilotons. The RT-23 missile features three stages with solid fuel and inertial navigation system using a built-in computer. It is very similar to the US Peacekeeper ICBM but utilizing a railway-based missile system is much more survivable than silo-based Peackeeper. The RT-23 missile system was deployed in 1987 with 12 missile trains, also called BZhRK, produced and each carrying up to three Molodets ICBMs. The missiles were so heavy (100+ tons) that required of steel hardened train cars/rolling gear. The overweight trains also damaged the Soviet Union's conventional railroads.
The RT-23 missile was intended to replace the SS-19 Stiletto ICBM in the Soviet inventory. Due to strategic arms reduction treaties (START-2) between the United States of America and Russia, signed in 1993, the SS-24 as well as other MIRVed missiles were dismantled. In August 2002, the Russian strategic forces claimed that at least one division of rail-based SS-24s would be retained in active service but eventually was dismantled. In 2004, the number of SS-24s assigned to the Russian strategic forces active duty was 15 of rail-based models. By 2007, this ICBM type was completely retired from the active duty within the Russian Strategic Forces. Each operational SS-24 missile was equipped with 10 warheads yielding 550 kilotons each.
Number of Stages: 3
Number of Warheads: 10
Diameter: 2.40 meter (94 inch)
Length: 23.5 meter (925 inch)
CEP: 300 meter
Max Range: 10,500 kilometer (5,670 nautical mile)
Weight: 105 ton (231,481 pound)
Yield: 5,500 kiloton
CEP: Circular Error Probable
Meters (m) Kilometers (km) Nautic Miles (nm) Inch (in) Yard (yd) Foot (ft) Millimeter (mm)
Pound (lb) Kilogram (kg) kN (KiloNewton) Ton (t)
Meters per Second (mps) Kilometers per Hour (kph) Knot (kt) Miles per Hour (mph)
Liter (l) Galon (gl)
Year (yr) Minutes (min) Second (sec)
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26 Dec 2014 and 30 Nov 2019
Operators & Related Equipment
Grand Total 901
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