The Russian state media has surprisingly released footage of the payload module of Russia’s R-36M2 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) for the first time. Russian military Blogger Dmitry Kornev also shared stills of the missile on Twitter On 20th November 2022.
SS-18 Mod 5 “Satan” Boasts the largest payload of any ICBM ever made. It also has multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles or MIRVs.
The first broadcast of the video was done on Russia 24 and TV Zvezda. Both of which are state-run television networks. The R-36M2 is now poised to replace the RS-28 In the Russian military service.
The Soviet Union started producing the R-36M2, a two-stage (not counting the payload bus) liquid-fueled silo-launched ICBM launched from a silo Back in the 1980s. It was said to be an upgrade to the R-36M.
One of the most important differences between the R-36M and the R-36 is that the newer version is supported by a gas generator which releases it from the silo before its main rockets ignite. This launch system is also dubbed the “cold launch system.”
Frequently referred to as the heavyweight, R-36M2 is an enormous missile. Almost 10 feet in diameter (3 meters) and weighing just over 211 tonnes when fully fueled, according to the Federation of American Scientists (FAS).
Its nosecone tip stands out in the photos of the missile’s payload buses. It resembles the Trident family of ballistic missiles launched by submarines of the US Navy in broad strokes. It might also be an aerospike that reduces friction.
The aerospikes play a pivotal role in lowering the friction during the launch Of weapon systems with comparatively blunt nose cones that allow for a larger capacity without increasing the length. The protrusion seen on the missile, according to Kornev, Is part of the system for releasing the nose cone from the rest of the payload bus, which as a result, aids in the penetration of the warheads.
What is puzzling is why the Russians chose to bring the specifications of these missile systems out in the open. Although these weapons are said to be replaced, the timeline is unclear when the RS-28 Sarmat, also known as the SS-X-30 “Satan 2,” will Be brought into military service. The newer missiles were supposed to be brought into service last year, but it is yet to happen.
The reason for this delay can be directly linked to the ongoing War between Russia and Ukraine. It is now allegedly being said the Kremlin has also stalled its long-term defence plan until the situation normalizes.