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Russia testfired "Bulava" missile
The Russian Northern Fleet submarine "Dmitrii Donskoy" today successfully testfired a "Bulava" missile in the Barents Sea. The Bulava will be the Russian state-of-the-art weapon to be applied by the country's new generation of submarines.
Navy spokesman Igor Dygalo says to the press that the missile hit its target in the Kamchatka islands in accordance with plans. The "Dmitrii Donskoy" conducted the lauch from submerged position in the Barents Sea.
Sources in the Russian Defence Ministry said to RIA Novosti that the launch is the most successful of all previous Bulava tests. For the first time, the whole missile programme, from the launch to the landing, was conducted successfully, they confirmed.
The Russian Navy has previously lauched eight Bulava missiles. Four of those ended with failure.
The Bulava carries the NATO reporting name SS-NX-30. It is based on the SS-27 (Topol M), but is both lighter and more sophisticated. The first subs to carry the Bulava will be the forthcoming Borei-class submarines, which will be outfitted with sixteen missiles each, Wikipedia writes. The first Borey-class sub -- the Yuri Dolgorukii -- is under construction in the Sevmash plant in Severodvinsk, Arkhangelsk Oblast.
It is expected that the Yuri Dolgorukii will be ready for operations in the course of 2009.